Even before the barangay became known as barangay Hapao, woodcarving is already practiced by our forefathers.
A long time ago, an American tourist travelling hiked the rugged pathways and dense mountains of our place and reached the native house of a villager. The villager was outside carving and beside him were some of his unfinished woodcarvings in the form of a man and a woman. The visitor, curious and attracted with the display, sat beside the villager and asked him what the woodcarvings beside him were. The villager, thinking that the American was asking if the carvings were finished, said “Na hapu.”, meaning the woodcarving of the man and the woman are initially formed and still incomplete. Later, when the visitor went to other places and was asked what he discovered in the village, he repeated the words “na hapu” but pronouncing it with a silent “h”. From then on, the village was known as the village where there is “na hapu”. This was shortened to Hapu. When the village was established as a barangay, the Hapu was spelled Hapao.
The barangay was a part of the old Municipality of Kiangan in 1805 during the time of Lt. Governor Jeff Galman of the American Army. On provision of Executive Order No. 6 series of 1921, Hungduan was created out of Kiangan to become a municipal district. After World War II, on June 25, 1963, under E.O. No. 42, Maggok became one of the fifteen regular barangays of the municipality. When Tinoc was created out of Hungduan under E. O. No. 184, Maggok was one of the four barangays which remained under the municipality. Later, under E.O. No. 327, four more barangays were taken from Banaue and transferred to Hungduan. S.P. Resolution No. 29 separated Baang from Hapao and Nungulunan to complete the nine barangays of the municipality.
Barangay Hapao is valley-like situated between mountains and bounded by a river to mark as the boundary between Hapao and Baang. It is bisected by a national road from Banaue to Poblacion, Hungduan to Benguet Province. Hapao was a part of Banaue but was transferred to Hungduan in the year 1983 under Batas Pambansa Bilang 327 along with Bokiawan, Nungulunan and Lubu-ong.
Hapao is bounded in the north by Bokiawan, South by Poblacion, East by Bangbang and west by Baang. It has an estimated total land area of 1,976 hectares. It is accessible to jeepneys, tricycles, motorcycles and minibuses.
Sitios of Barangay Hapao