This is really a loooong overdue blog but I’m still gonna share it anyway.
I was on a not-so-long vacation last February this year. The plan was
actually just travel around Ilocos for 3 days but what happened? We went to
Baguio for the second time but just a short drop by.
Actually, I just thought of giving you tips on traveling to
Ilocos. Don’t worry, this is budget-friendly. If you are like us (me and
friends) who travel for leisure, then these things I will list below might
– Book a promo flight. For us, we booked 6 months
ahead of travel period since we still needed to save up for the big trip and
also, we were busy at work. Ilocos is
kinda little costly, just so you know.
– Hire a private van. Preferably someone you know
so you have no worries on leaving your valuables inside the van. But still, be
responsible and extra careful. My
friends and I hired a van whose driver is our officemate from Manila. We also
had him on our Baguio trip last year. We rented the van for 4 days and 3 nights
so it was quite pricey but all worth it. No regrets at all. He picked us up
from the airport and drove us back to Manila. You can also just book a package tour if you don’t have enough contacts.
– Search for places you want to visit and note the
location. What’s so good about renting a private van is that you can go
wherever you want without time limit. Also, we had no fixed itinerary so Kuya
Arbee (the owner and driver of the van) took us to a lot of places as
sidetrips. We also dropped by to some tourist spots along the drive.
– Search for affordable accommodations. If you
come in a group, a dorm type would be preferable. For us, we got two rooms.
Gentlemen separated from ladies. We didn’t opt to stay in luxurious hotels
‘cause we only use the room for sleeping and shower. We are a group of
practical friends actually. We were after the trip, not the sleep. But if you
guys would go for expensive accommodation, I have nothing against that.
– Search for nice restaurants. You wouldn’t want
to miss trying their local cuisine. Just try at least one good food. That won’t hurt the budget. *winks*
Now I’ll just let the photos tell the story.
A TASTE OF VIGAN
This is where we stayed on our first night. Very affordable and the staffs are very accommodating. Walking distance to Calle Crisologo and Plaza Salcedo.
This is Calle Crisologo at night. You would really think you’re on ancient time. There are lots of good food nearby. If your appetite is too choosy to try their local cuisine, there are fast food chains all over the place. You’d be shocked by the building structures. A mix of modern and old ambiance. I recommend you to try Cafe Leona. The bill is worth it though I’m not really into meat and other exotic-looking menus.
They also have night bars there. Only that, people are so demure.
Souvenir shops open from 6am – 12midnight. I tell you, if you want to buy pasalubongs, buy it from there. It’s cheaper and prices are negotiable.
Witness and be amazed by their Dancing Fountain show at Plaza Salcedo, every night at around 7pm. The plaza is just in front of Calle Crisologo.
WELCOME TO ILOCO NORTE
RING THE BELL
People there are so friendly. They would even offer to take pictures of you for free.
This is owned by Chavit Singson. I would describe this place as an enormous park/museum/safari. Actually I really don’t know. My friends saw the musuem but I didn’t go there anymore. It was scorching hot. So if you go here, come by at late afternoon. There are souvenir shops there too.
Had I known it’s too cold and windy out here, I should’ve have brought a blanket and wrap myself in it.
Finally, the windmills I’ve been dying to see. Too bad we arrived there at twilight time. So not much photos.
SAND DUNES ADVENTURE
So you think we’re in the desert but there’s a sea. Are kidding me?
The 4×4 ride plus sand surfing costs 500 bucks per head. I tell you, prepare yourself for the extreme adventure here. Sorry for the blurry photos. The photographer… hrrr!
First try I just seated on the board. Perfect landing!
How’s the second try? I was like “I thought I can do it but…”
Okay. end of Sand Dunes story. Last photo to redeem my shame.
AGUA SEDA BEACH RESORT
Beach is just in front of us. It’s affordable here too. You’re sweating at daytime but never ever forget your sweater at night. Trust me.
The mini Boracay. Watch out for big waves. If you don’t know how to swim just like me, then don’t dare to go far. The waves are dangerous. You could get washed away in a blink of an eye. My girl friends and I were holding each other all the time. Lol. I’m too ashamed to call it swimming. Just dipping.
Beachin’ early in the mornin’ for vitamin sea
TOP OF THE WORLD
CAPE BOJEADOR LIGHTHOUSE
Great view up above there and also (pretend you’re listening to me whispering), a looot of horror stories about here. Come, feel, and see for yourself.
This spot here offers you a jaw-dropping 360-degree-view of Ilocos Norte.
BRIDGE OVER TROUBLED WATER
One of our sidetrips.Perfect for photoshoot but too windy. They have a zipline here but it was closed when we dropped by.
I am not a Roman Catholic but I have a thing for old churches. There’s so much history of them.
Other sidetrips we have gone to include Malacanang of the North, Marcos Museum and I forgot the ohers. Anyway, after exploring Ilocos Sur and Norte, we went again to Baguio but didn’t stay overnight. It was their Panagbenga Festival. They showcased floats of flowers. Too bad we arrived there late in the evening already so we didn’t have nice pictures. Most of our cameras were left inside the van.
So that’s it! See more pictures on my Facebook account here in this album. If you have some queries about this travel, I would be glad to talk with you.