Ilocos Region is comprised of Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur, La Union, and Pangasinan provinces with 116 municipalities. Each provinces has its own capital city or municipality that serves as central hub in which Laoag is the capital of Ilocos Norte, Vigan for Ilocos Sur, San Fernando for La Union, and Lingayen for Pangasinan. These capital cities and municipality are common tourist destinations because of its access to local products, resorts, historical cultures, historical structures, adrenaline rush activities, and other different activities that tourists can enjoy.


Time check 9:15pm, as our transport decided to pick up us at SM MoA where we have our dinner. We are on haste on this trip because this should be in 3-days schedule shortened to 2-days, but still we to manage to take some pictures within SM MoA and start the trip with some smile on our face as good vibes.

First stop, Vigan

Yes, it is truly the Heritage Site to be considered in the Philippines, in Asia, or even the World. We arrived in Vigan City around around 5am, more or less 7 hours travel time.It was still dimmed but the place was surrounded by yellow lights which enhanced the beauty of the structures.The well-known "Calle Crisologo" will take you back to 18th century and let you see and feel the significant changes of present from the past.

Next stop, Pagburnayan

Watching the actual making of jars/pottery was captivating; it will give you guts to experience how it's done. We were amazed on the simple process of manual turning the round surface where the jars were formed. The man in charge was also telling us about the materials used and how the clay was made. He shared us everything about it which made me think that this is an art to be proud of as Pinoy.

Next stop, Bantay Church and Watchtower

Both structures are part of historical fragments to be remembered, since it associate the development of Bantay municipality during and after spanish colonial era. The Bantay Church is known as Shrine of Our Lady of Charity, established in 1590 and one of the oldest church in Ilocos Region. The Bantay Watchtower is an old structure built in 1591 used to watch over pirates during spanish colonial era. It is something we should think on how this structure protect a part of the Philippines and secure the people. 

Next stop, Paoay Church

Another structure to be proud of, since it is considered as National Cultural Treasure by UNESCO World Heritage Site, completed in 1710 "The Paoay Church". When I first to looked at the church, I felt like I was into a wallpaper because of its distinctness. It seemed too strong to sustain heavy loads with creative designs.

Next stop, MalacaƱang of the North

An old mansion and workplace of the late President Ferdinand Marcos. Looking back into our history, Marcos family has longest term of leading and serving the people of the Philippines. Several structures and buildings were accomplished in which until now we are still making used of it. It also amazed us knowing that Philippines is rich in agriculture especially on rice fields. Several accomplishments written around and tourists were allowed to go around the mansion. We could see the picture on how affluent we were before. It confused us sometimes for whatever written on our history related to his structures.

Next stop, Laoag Sand Dunes

I could say that this activity was the highlight of the tour. It was really awesome; an adrenaline rush ride, in which a 4x4 truck was drifting on the sand. Those quick ascent and descent will let you shout out of enjoyment while the quick turn will let you hold your breath thinking "Please don't let us be thrown away! ahahahaha!". Track stopovers, will also let you enjoy the view of nature of Laoag facing the town and facing the sea. The veteran driver was so accommodating, he took picture for us and let us took our time to enjoy the place while on stopover. After the 4x4 ride, we went to sand boarding and again another adrenaline rush activity but we can have it as long as we want to. I've tried standing and sitting slides but I did it few times only because I am really tired ahahaha!

Next stop, Cape Bojeador Lighthouse

It's a welcoming beacon and a guide way for ships that enters Philippine Archipelago. It was established in Spanish Colonial era, first lighted on March 30, 1892. It's now a cultural heritage in Burgos, Ilocos Norte having a wonderful view on the coastline. The tourist's attendant was so accommodating, he  talked to us everything about the lighthouse and its equipment. His name is "Joe" as I remember, thanks to him for entertaining us and providing us information about the Lighthouse.

Next stop, Kapurpurawan Rock Formations

Nature always amaze us especially with this white rocks formation chiseled by ocean and weather forces. It is white streamline limestone along Burgos, Ilocos Norte facing Bangui Bay. It is good to have a protection from sun rays since tourists need to hike going to the exact spot of rock formation. There is no trees to shade, you need to go under the angled stone to shade yourself. It is hot but you cannot stop taking picture around because it is wonderful. ahahaha!

Next stop, Bangui Windmills

The renewable power source of the north that is capable of 33 Megawatts as the entire wind farm. Each is 70 meters high with Vestas V82 1.65 MW wind turbines and capable of supplying a barrio or brgy. with one of that wind mill. It is good to our nature because it does not contribute to pollution. It preserved the environment of  Bangui, Ilocos Norte. As an engineer, I highly appreciate this technology found in the North since it can protects and preserve the Nature while we are moving for our technology. I hope other provinces and places in Philippines will make use of this technology. Other than that, I observed another technology is now trying to be developed by the northern engineers and scientists, hope it will succeed. Good luck to you guys, send me an invitation if you will be presenting it to public. ahahaha! 

Next stop, Patapat Viaduct

A concrete bridge connecting Ilocos Region to Cagayan Valley Region. It is 31 meters above sea level with 1.3 kilometers long having the view of the sun facing Pasaleng Bay. It is exactly at the top of the map of Luzon. As I watch the sunrise, I can say that it was a nice trip and will have to get back again on this trip. 

Actually, we are joiners on this trip and so lucky to be acknowledged and listed. We want convey our big thanks to the organizers "Rog" and "DM", couples who did not let us feel different (Steph-Angelie and Earl-Aira), and also to Kuya Neil who compensate the schedule. God bless you all always.

from the Outsiders 

(Poy-Batz, Pit-PB, Kringles, and Emman the Great)

For this type of trip, you can rent a Van or any SUV if you are in a bigger group. It saves a lot of your budget. If you are in a smaller group or solo traveler, have a public transport from manila. Go to central bus station going to Northern Luzon.

For assistance, you can send us an email or comment below. We can refer you for transport.

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