Archive for July, 2011

Somewhere in Ilocos Norte…and bit of Sur [Day 3]

We have to  bid vacation goodbye. It’s about time to go home and face reality [a.k.a. work 😀 ].  Well I think the Ilocos Norte experience wont be complete if you’re not able to visit the famous PAOAY CHUCH

It’ll be our church visit of the day. I was starstrucked the first time saw it. Akala ko hanggang sa mga travel shows sa TV ko lang ito makikita. ‘dun ko ata nileteral ang kiss the ground 😀

St. Augustine Church, or more popularly called Paoay Church, in Ilocos Norte is one of the the oldest churches in the Philippines

Built late 1600’s , Paoay church was made  of baked bricks, coral rocks, salbot (tree sap) and lumber, and has 24 carved massive buttresses for support. It is an architectural solution to the area’s challenging, natural setting. Both sides of the nave are lined with the most voluminous stone buttresses seen around the islands. Large coral stones were used for the lower level while bricks were used for the upper levels of the church.

After some prayers and [vanity] photoshoot, we decided to head south and since we will pass by Ilocos Sur, we decided to take a little detour. Thus my first trip to Vigan 😀

we parked our ride beside Cathedral de Vigan, since there’s no mass in Paoay Church, it’s good thing that we’re able to catch the Easter Mass there 😀 So there goes our last minute prayers and wishes. Actually, I cant concentrate ,  I can’t deny that I’m excited to see the famous Vigan.

Pagkatapos na pagkatpos ng misa, gora na sa Vigan. On our way, makikita mo yung commercialism ng lugar, nakapasok na pala ang mga fastfood chains sa lugar, pero para di masagwa, you’ll see that they tried their best to design their infra to match with the Vigan backdrop

Hindi ko akalin na ganito kabusy ang Vigan. Contrary sa lagi ko nakikita sa mga postcards. Anyway. patawas at isa lang akong Vigan Virgin haha 😀 Dami mabibilhan ng souvenirs, sa bungad palang dami nang magagandang tinda, goodluck sa’yo kunbg mabibisita mo ang lahat.

Common na ang mga keychain, so if you want to take home some good pasalubong try to look for other handicrafts as well like wind chimes,  Vigan harps, woven purse etc.

For us foodie, we checked their famous Bagnet, yun yung deep fry na karne ng baboy, parang sinit-charon [tama ba ang term?]. masarap sya isahog sa pansit o munggo o kahit anong ginisang gulay. 450-500 pesos lang ang isang balot/isang kilo. Andyan rin ang Longganisa ng Vigan,  malasa siya at masarap sa almusal, nasa 100-200 ang balot, 12 piraso na yun.  Check mo rin ang kanilang mga wine at iba pang minatamis.  Nakalimutan ko na ang mga pangalan pero di mo sya tipikal na matatagpuan sa Maynila.

Matapos maubos ang pera, we decided to stroll within the streets of Vigan. Too bad, there’s no open museum or exhibit because it’s Easter that time.

Nang mapagod, naisipan na naming bumiyahe ulit para puntahan ang pinakahuli s itenerary : Ang Baluarte [ni Singson]. Walang entrance ang Baluarte kaya jampacked ang tao nung pumunta kami, despite na tirik na tirik ang araw.

Tyempo naman na may photo exhibit that day. Entitled : Talugading, it showcased the beauty of Ilocos Sur through series of photographs.

Then we’re greeted by an ostrich roaming around freely. Other tried to come near it’s quite scary, baka tukain ka nalang bigla ng malaking angry bird. Not just a zoo, Baluarte is an interactive wildlife sanctuary and facility, with the breathtaking view of its dominating scenic boulders amidst trees and greens.

Baluarte is 80 hectares of gently rolling terrains, hills and mountain sides, the structures of facilities and amenities, its phases of construction is in its best possible realistic and natural habitat for good and sound animal care.

Located right beside the picnic area is the butterfly garden. An enclosed part of Baluarte where  butterflies roam freely amidst a beautifully landscaped garden. Cameras and video recorders are allowed inside the sanctuary for the visitors to capture their unique moments with these remarkable creatures.

There’s  also offer free mini horse rides that we call “tiburin”. The mini horse pulls a small carriage that can accommodate up to 4 persons including the “caballero”. Taking photos and riding the mini horse is absolutely free of charge.Right at the entrance of Baluarte is the petting zoo where visitors can freely interact and take photos with the different animals like camels, ostriches, deer, parrots, orangutans and a lot more.

It’s around 2pm when we decided to hit the road again, we want to go home early. but our driver surprised us with a little detour. Thus our visit to Thunderbird resort.

Located at  Poro Point San Fernando, La Union,  this offers a spectacular view of the ocean and provides all the components for carefree living such as pools, a minibar, casino,   valet parking, and room service.

So there you go, that’s to wrap up the whole Ilocos Norte/Sur trip 😀 we arrive Manila around 12 midnight. Tired from the long roadtrip but fulfilled because of the overwhelming experience. Lalo na sa’kin because it’s my first time to visit the Ilocos region.

So that’s for now guys.

So Till Then and Godbless 😀



Somewhere in Ilocos Norte [Day 2]

 There I was, on my second day travelling with my college peeps.  Actually, I dont have a clear idea about our itinerary, good thing there’s Jonathan to tour us in his hometown.

Our first stop of the day : Cape Bojeador Lighthouse

Anyone driving north through the province of Ilocos Norte can see the lighthouse which dominates the Burgos skyline.

After iparada ang sasakyan, syang akyat namin pataas ng bundok. The Climb ang drama namin that time. I didn’t complain. Namiss ko rin maghike. Nagulat ako sa dami ng turista sa mga oras na iyon.

It’s deja vu all over, I dont why but i felt like I went here before. I think it’s because the lighthouse quite resembles the Malabrigo Lighthouse of Lobo Batangas.

The lighthouse’s  pavilion has  been transformed into a small museum. Giving tourist like us backgrounds about the declared  National Historical Landmark

Also known as Burgos Lighthouse [thus the town] , it is built around 1800s and is set high on Vigia de Nagparitan Hill overlooking the scenic Cape Bojeador where early galleons used to sail by. Earthquake around 1990 damaged the lighting apparatus, thus the lighthouse is currently inoperable.

From its top, one can easily take in the sweeping panorama of the sea and the surrounding countryside.  Also, you can feel and enjoy the wind coming from China Sea

Then off to our next detination. Pagudpud beach! naks! makakaligo na ako sa dagat.  wasn’t able to hit the beach last year due to work but hah! lubos lubusin ang vacation leave. Anyway, sa daan palang makikita mo na yung sikat Bangui Windmills. Anlalaki nila! OA man pakinggan pero gahigante ang mga windmills. Naexcite ako lalo ngaun malalpitan ko sila mamaya. And out of nowhere, bigla kong narinig si regine Velasquez kumakanta sa utak ko, mamaya ko kwento. anyway back to Pagudpud…

Its white-sand beaches and crystal-blue water makes Pagudpud a haven for tourists. that’s true, kaso paano namin mapapatunayan ang ganoong statement kung fully booked na lahat ng resort. Buti nalang andyan ang ever reliable naming driver 😀 nakahanap at nakapasok ang sasakyan namin sa resort kahit fully booked. Ang cottage ay malapit sa dagat at bilihan ng souvenirs at ang pamatay, it’s FREE!

tulad ng banggit ko kanina, malapit lang ang cottage sa bilihan ng souvenirs. Actually they’re by the beachside.

from nick knacks made from seashells, coconut shells, to woven bags and keychain, you can actually buy all your pasalubong here. Ang galing din nung iba na on the spot nila gagawin yung mga souveniers like woven bags and Shell paperweights. You can do and buy bargains as low as 10 pesos 😀so bago matuksong gmastos ng bonggang bongga, we  stroll away from our cottage and decide to do our passion. Vanity picture. Chos. haha

hay. kakarelax sobra. worth the wait. worth din ng vacation leave ko, anyway, kahit minit ang araw, we dont mind, mahangin naman kasi at inisip nalang namin na turista kami, nagpapaTAN haha.

at syempre, di mawawala ang isa pa naming hobby, ang walang kamatayang jumpshots. 😀

To cap off our second day in Ilocos Norte, we went ot he infamous Bangui Windmills. Like I said earlier, this reminds me of Regine Velasquez TV ad. nakaka-LSS. I actually sang it while taking pictures that time. haha

Well check this video first para magkaroon kayo ng idea [you’ll see  Cape Bojeador  Lighthouse as well ]

…and again some jumpshots 😀

The Northwind Project in Bangui is the first windfarm project in South East Asia. Towering 70 meters tall, these majestic wind powered turbines have attracted many visitors both local and foreign. They supplies electricity to Bangui and towns nearby.

This is an awesome experience. I mean, this might be my first and last, seeing this giants made appreciate the power of mother nature. [naks pangdrama ang banat]. my friends know my love to pinwheels and windmills, they’re my emblem and seeing an array of  huge windmills made me smile.

To bring home a piece of this place, I brought a miniature windmill for my desk. Actually you can find many sizes of windmills in the souvenir shops,  from small as  keychains  to as big as a common stand fan.

Well’ that’s for Day 2. Apologies if i wasn’t able to warn you about the enormous jumpshots we had. Let’s say we just love to jump. haha

So that’s for now guys.

So Till Then and Godbless 😀