If you are planning to spend your vacation in Baguio, there’s a new attraction in La Trinidad, Benguet that you need to include in your places to visit. It’s a valley of vibrant bright-colored houses that look like a giant mural.
Stobosa Valley of Colors: A Vibrant Village Near Baguio
The place is collectively known as StoBoSa, an acronym for 3 localities namely Stonehill, Botiwtiw, and Sadjap. All of them are situated in Barangay Balili at La Trinidad, Benguet.
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Why did they paint their houses with different vibrant colors?
In 2016, the Department of Tourism, the Local Government of La Trinidad, and Davies Paints transformed the place into the Philippines’ first and largest community artwork inspired by the Favelas of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil and the Gamcheon Cultural Village of Busan in South Korea. The project is a component of the DOT-Cordillera Administrative Region’s Rev-Bloom (Rev-up, Revive, Revisit, Revitalize) Urban Redevelopment Tourism Program.
Around 200 houses were painted in various colors and patterns. The houses were painted by artists from Tam-awan Village. They used environment-friendly paints from Davies Paint. The project required 1,000 primer paints and about 1,800 gallons of colored paint to fully cover the hillside homes of Stobosa. An estimated 520 residents, artists, and individual volunteers all lent a helping hand to make the creative vision a reality.
It’s amazing how they transformed this once an eyesore unappealing sprawl of makeshift houses along the La Trinidad highway in Benguet into a Stobosa Hillside Homes Artwork that is now a tourist attraction that draws crowds of onlookers wanting to capture a unique Instagram-worthy image.
Today, Stobosa is considered an icon of transformation, a definite example of “bayanihan” spirit of Filipinos. All the locals’ efforts and sacrifices make it more vibrant complimented by the paint visible to the eye.
How to get to the Valley of Colors
The Valley of Colors is located along Halsema Highway in La Trinidad, Benguet. Most people think it’s located in Baguio City, but it’s actually a few kilometers away from the city. Travel time from Manila to Benguet is estimated from 4-5 hours depending on departure time. The following are the options on how to go to La Trinidad Benguet from Baguio City:
- Private Car –Waze up Valley of Colors Baguio as the location you’re heading to. The welcome arch of La Trinidad is the landmark that you are near. After a few meters, the colorful houses will be on your right side. Travel time is more or less 30 minutes
- Taxi – This is the best way to get there. Prepare around PHP 100.00 for the fare.
- Jeepney: Go to La Trinidad Jeepney Terminal station. Ask for the jeepney route passing by the “Valley of Colors”. Pay the amount of PHP 9.00 for the fare.
- From downtown Baguio, catch a jeep to Acop, Tomay, Buyagan, or any Trinidad-bound jeep from Session Road or Magsaysay. Get off at KM 3, you will see the artwork on the right side of the road, the fare is P9 and the travel time is around 10 minutes.
- If you are coming from Sagada or Bontoc, you will see this spot on the left side of the road going to Baguio City.
From downtown Baguio, me and my friends Gessa and Dan decided to visit Stobosa as part of our Baguio adventure. We told the driver of the taxi to take us to these colorful houses which we don’t know the name of at first. Good thing it’s a famous attraction for tourists so the driver knows what we are referring to right away.
We were dropped off at the waiting shed. Beside it is the hanging bridge connecting to the colorful houses. In this position, you can take time on capturing photos and videos. This is a residential area so there are people constantly crossing the bridge every now and then. You might want to take that in mind.
We stayed here for 10-20 minutes only. There’s nothing much to do here but this is located near La Trinidad Arc and the Chinese Temple/ Bell Church if you want to take a look as well. For us, we head back to Baguio to visit other tourist spots.
The Valley of Colors never failed to amaze the happy kid in me. I’m glad we take time to visit.
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