Go on an Enchanting Boat Ride at Apayao’s Lussok Cave and Underground River

It looks magical.

Nestled in the Cordillera Administrative Region, Apayao is surrounded by lush terrains, diverse ecosystems, rivers, hills, and attractions that boast of nature’s raw beauty. Among its many destinations in the municipality of Luna, which is becoming an eco-tourism hotspot for its Lussok Cave and Underground River. If you’re in for an adventure, this hidden gem in the northern region is worth the long drive.

 

Lussok Crystal Cave  and Underground River

The seven-chamber Lussok Crystal Cave is located in Barangay Dagupan in Apayao’s capital, Luna. But before becoming a tourist destination, the cave used to be a hideout for local rebels and Japanese soldiers during the war. The Lussok Crystal Cave and Underground River is a 200-meter boat ride experience.

 

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Before entering the cave, tourists get to go on an enchanting boat ride in the idyllic river. It boasts of green and azure waters that are just magical, giving you the feeling that you’re about to enter a place that’s out of this world.

Inside the cave, you’ll be greeted by gigantic limestone formations: stalactites and stalagmites in different shapes formed over the years. Tourists are advised to refrain from touching these stones to protect their natural state. Streaks of sunlight glisten inside the pitch-black cave through the hole created from war explosions. In Ilocano, holes are called “lussok”, giving the cave its name.

 

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Although only 200 meters of the underground river is accessible during the boat ride, the experience still has its own charms. You can hear fruit bats flutter around the caves

The tour experience costs Php 120.00 per head.

 

Spelunking

After seeing the wonders of the underground river, thrill-seekers can go spelunking to explore Lussok Cave’s chambers. The journey up to the vertical cave is an hour long. You will be accompanied by a tour guide who will tell you the right places to step, with the help of ropes, to ensure safety.

 

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But know that this will be a rigorous experience; assess if you can handle the steep stones once you enter the cave during the boat tour. The trail can be slippery and muddy, so it’s better to come prepared with the right gear.

Will you take on the challenge?

 

How to get there

The fastest way to get to Apayao is via an hour-long plane ride from Laoag or Tuguegarao. But the most common way is via a 12-14 hour bus ride from Manila via Florida Bus or RCJ Bus (both in Sampaloc, Manila) to Abulug, Cagayan. Once you arrive at Junction Luna terminal, take a 10-minute tricycle ride to Poblacion Luna.

 

More places to explore in the North: 

5 Beautiful Destinations Where You Can Go Soul Searching in the North
Vigan-Laoag-Pagudpud: Solo Backpacking Up North
This Resort in La Union Will Make Your Santorini Holiday Dreams Come True

 

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Ina Louise Manto

When she's not writing, Ina is busy collecting stationery, making very specific playlists, listening to a podcast, or thinking of her next meal.