Lang-ay is a generic term in the Mountain Province which means to partake food and drink native wine in fellowship with family, relatives, friends, and community folks. It is from this cultural concept that the Lang-ay Festival came into being in 2005 with the leadership of Mountain Province Governor Maximo Dalog and Association of Provincial Executives (APEX) President Paulo Pagteilan. The 2005 Lang-ay Festival was the first Lang-ay event in conjunction with the Foundation Day of Mountain Province in April 7.
By virtue of House Bill No.1526, Mountain Province was separated from the old Mountain Province composed of Bontoc, Ifugao, Benguet, Apayao and Kalinga (BIBAK). The new Provincial Legislative passed the first resolution declaring the birth of a new district and separate Mountain Province in April 7, 1967. Eventually Proclamation No. 144 was signed by then President Fidel Ramos declaring April 7 as Mountain Province Day.
Landlocked Mountain Province is found in the central part of the Cordillera mountain ranges in northern Luzon of the Philippines. It is bounded on the north by the province of Kalinga, Apayao and Abra; on the south by Benguet; on the east by Ifugao and Isabela; and on the west by the province of Ilocos Sur.
Eighty three percent (83%) of the 229,231 hectares is mountainous with 10% of the area devoted to agriculture.
Towering mountain heights and sharp ridges characterize the central and western landscape of the province while gradually sloping and rolling foothills mark the eastern towns.
Land elevation reaches up as high as 2,582 masl in Mt Amuyao in Barlig. Climate is generally cool in the higher elevations of the municipalities of Sagada, Besao, Bauko, Natonin and Sadanga to prevalently warm in the low elevations of Bontoc, Paracelis and Sabangan owing to warm winds from Ilocos region from the west, and Isabela from the east.
Major headwaters include the mighty Chico River which irrigates agricultural lands of Bontoc, Sadanga, and Sabangan, aside from posing potential for white water rafting. Equally, mighty Siffu River irrigates the rice producing towns of Barlig, Natonin, and Paracelis in the eastern front.
Mountain Province with its virginal forests and mysterious lakes locates cool and soothing atmosphere for retreat and meditation. Up north in Sadanga where the mighty Chico River runs through, one finds Sadanga Hot Springs, 29 kilometers from Poblacion, Bontoc. The sulfuric water from the springs is medicinal in nature. Bathing ponds are constructed to trap the warm water for a comfortable dip.
Abysmal and enigmatic caves are a sight in western Mountain Province. The famous Sumaguing Cave among other small caves, are natural underground caves where many a tourist delights spelunking in. Waterfalls in this western side of the province locate the equally powerful and soothing Bomod-ok falls in Fidelisan, Sagada.
Take a 3o minute ride further up in Besao from Sagada for that spectacular view of the Besao sunset. Meditate on those glowing rays of the sun as dusk sets in to welcome the night.
The bustling capital town of Bontoc offers a wide array of natural spots- from woodland lanes along the Bontoc-Can-eo and Mainit- Maligcong routes to expansive viewpoints at Pagturaw- Maligcong, Mount Polis and Bagabag.
Adventurers would love white water rafting along the mighty Chico River which flows through Kalinga, Sadanga, Bontoc, and Sabangan. White water rafting is best in June to August when the rains come soft to forceful. Mountain climbing is best in Mt Amuyao in Barlig, Mt Kalawitan in Sabangan, Mt Ampakaw in Sagada, Mt Mogaw in Tadian and Mt Polis in Bontoc.
One also can’t miss buying delicately woven tapestries in this much visited province up north in the Cordillera. Tapestry weaving is popular as side occupation and source of income in almost all areas of the province where hand woven bags, knapsacks, purses are sold at reasonable prices.
Ceramics in southern vegetable producing municipalities of Bauko locate locally-made jars from Bila barangay where clay molds into naturally charred and glazed products. Pottery as an art and craft is becoming a favorite as it is popularized by resident ceramic artists in Sagada.
Mountain Province is predominantly inhabited by hard working indigenous peoples numbering around 150,000 including migrants from the provinces of Ilocos and Pangasinan.
A major bulk of the populace compose at least 80% of the farming occupation with the
Source: Up North in Mountain Province 2005