The provinces of Ilocos Sur and Ilocos Norte are too far away from Metro Manila. So far, that I never thought I’d be able to visit these places in my lifetime. There are (currently) only two reasonable ways to get there : by air (expensive once a day flights) or by land (12 Hour travel time if you go directly to Ilocos Norte). GOOD THING my favorite tour group – HASHTRAVELS organised a tour earlier this year (yes, this post is several months delayed). Similar to my previous experiences with Hashtravels, this tour did not disappoint. The group made the trip enjoyable and bearable despite the super long drive.
Our first stop was Saint Paul Metropolitan Cathedral in Vigan, Ilocos Sur. Contrary to what others think, I enjoy visiting churches because you get to make a wish if it’s your first time entering them. So in this trip, I was able to make two wishes…. I’ve been doing it for as long as I could remember, and I haven’t even been able to track if any of these selfish wishes have been granted. I guess, that’s just how faith works for a lazy Catholic like me. Lol.
Vigan is also famous for its old houses / historic sites. But since we planned to pass by it again on our way back to Manila, we left after a quick breakfast and bathroom break.
Our next stop was the city of Laoag, Ilocos Norte – the territory of the Marcoses. I don’t like them. But I cannot parade around the area screaming about my political choices, lest I’d be gunned down by solid north supporters. But I wore yellow shoes to annoy them (they hate the yellows).
After Laoag, we headed to the private villa in Pagudpud..and since this is a long overdue post, I have deleted photos of the villa hahahha
But allow me to share with you some of the photos we took by the beach…and around the property…. you see, this place was quite far from the busy Pagudpud and Saud beaches, but Hashtravels ensured that we would get the peace and serenity we needed for a perfect weekender.
The following day, we visited the wind farm at Burgos. I don’t know about you, but the view was really amazing. They looked like alien spaceships moving in harmony; and it felt like we were in a scene from Ultraman or something haha.
After the windmills, we went to Paoay Church – a UNESCO World Heritage site and a National Cultural Treasure.
And then, we headed back to Vigan for a quick and final look at Calle Crisologo – famous for its old Spanish Houses. To be honest, I was a bit disappointed because THERE WERE SO MANY PEOPLE!!! You can no longer feel that you’ve been transported back in time since there’s a lot of tourists in the area. It could also probably be bad timing because we went there on a weekend – people don’t have work, and some just came from the Sunday mass, and yeah…. It was a bit chaotic.
I managed to take some photos…
It was a hectic weekend.. But I enjoyed it and I was also able to rest in the villa. Would I go back? Probably if I don’t need to travel for 12 hours… For now, at least I could say that I’ve been there 🙂