Information about Sugong Hanging Coffins
Sugong Hanging Coffins
Sugong Hanging Coffins, locally known as Sugong Cave, is the location of the hanging coffins in Sagada, observes a unique tradition. The elderly make their own coffins from hollowed-out trees which means if they are too sick or sick, their relatives will prepare their coffins in their place. The deceased are put inside coffins and are then transported to a cave for burial.
Instead of being buried, the coffins are hanged inside caves or on the face of cliffs, alongside the hanging coffins of their forefathers. Such burials have been practiced by the Sagada people for over 2,000 years, and some of the coffins are well over a century old. The coffins eventually deteriorate and collapse from their precarious places.
The coffins were hanged because it was believed that the higher the deceased were raised, the more likely their souls would achieve a higher nature in the afterlife. Many of the coffin sites are impossible to access and should be left alone out of respect, but can be observed from a distance.
How to get there
Aside from joining a guided tour, you can travel to Mountain Province by bus or private car from Manila. For commuters, there are buses in Cubao that go straight to Sagada. The other choice is to take a bus to Banaue or Baguio and then ride a bus or van bound for Sagada.
Best time to visit
It is best to visit the hanging coffins during the warm season, from November to April. Take note the roads are often blocked due to landslides during the rainy season.