With tourists looking for other destinations outside of Baguio City, Tublay, Benguet has seen a steady increase in tourist arrivals this year.
Mayor Armando Lauro said Tublay is fast becoming a day tour destination especially with its tourism attractions that are accessible while navigating the Halsema Highway.
From January to March this year, Tublay has already recorded 16,305 tourist arrivals. Last year, it received 18,373 tourists.
Based on the tourism office records, the sites frequented along the Halsema Highway are privately-owned sites such as the Polig’s Farm, D’Ridge Recreational Hub, Beacon Hill Eco-Park, and the Winaca Eco-cultural Village and Forest Homes.
Lauro said many of these sites have their own social media accounts where they promote their attractions and tourists could directly contact them for reservations.
He said the tourist arrivals peaked at these sights especially when the Igorot Stone Kingdom in Pinsao, Baguio City was temporarily closed, as tourists looked for other alternative attractions to visit in Benguet.
Tublay is also adjacent to La Trinidad, which is frequented due to the strawberry farms; and to Atok, which is known for its elevated flower farms such as in Northern Blossom and Haight’s Place.
The other tourism sites in Tublay that are open to the public are the Ahonda Park, Saguibalete Park, Alokip-Pinan Eco Trail, Nature Lover’s Garden, Kaalnusan Camping Ground, Payay Rock Climbing, and Amando’s Lemon Picking Farm.
Tublay’s other natural wonders are Bengaongao and Paterno Caves which are near each other, Mount Pokkong, Ketong Falls or the Blue Lagoon, Bayokbok Falls, Siam-Siam Falls, and the Asin Hot Spring.
The municipality is also re-training the tour guides and tourism personnel to be able to receive tourists and guide them.
Tublay is also encouraging the community to conduct homestays as added income for their households. Proper training will also be conducted for interested residents to open their homes to tourists as guided by the Department of Tourism. – Ofelia C. Empian