Sunday, July 13, 2014

The 10 Things Why You Should Visit Ilocos Norte

Welcome to Ilocos Norte.  Finally!  After several plans and attempts I set foot to the northernmost part of the country, Region 1.  While in El Nido this year, the same bunch talked about their purchased tickets to the province, while I, monitored diligently Cebu Pacific's webpage hoping for a seat sale! Alas, that trip was meant to be!

Here are the 10 things why you should also booked that ticket and visit Ilocos Norte.

1. The Parola (Lighthouse) of Cape Bojeador

"First lit on March 30, 1892, and is set high on Vigia de Nagpartian Hill overlooking the scenic Cape Bojeador where early galleons used to sail by. After over 100 years, it still functions as a welcoming beacon to the international ships that enter the Philippine Archipelago from the north and guide them safely away from the rocky coast of the town." (Wikipedia)

What pairs old structures? yes ghost stories.  The atmosphere was a bit eerie even with fellow guests.  Good thing, I don't have the sight for that dimension.

2.   Kapurpurawan Rock Formation

It felt like I was in a Tagalog movie.  To explore the area, you can walk or ride a horse.  It was so hot that day I opted to rent an umbrella for 10 pesos and walk.

I was curious with this piece of art.  I wasn't sure if there were alligators in the area that this sculpture represent.  But the main feature was this white limestone formation.  If I were a geologist I would have appreciated it more.  I should have paid attention to my geology class back in college.  It was beautiful actually but too bad I did not give justice in my photo.  I don't have an eye of an artist and I don't know my camera that well.  If you are a photographer, the view is a good subject.      

3. The Bangui Windmills

Kudos to Ilocos Norte for this renewable energy source.  I hope my hometown would take this lead for cheaper electric bills.  We may not have strong winds but hey, we have the sun!  Amazing towering giants. And my friend did her windmill pose with her flags.

4. The Beach

Need I say more? These photos speak for themselves.  And if you get lucky, you'll catch a wave.  Visit them during the -ber months for surfing.

Saud Beach

Saud Beach

Maira-ira Beach (Blue Lagoon Cove)

Maira-ira Beach (Blue Lagoon Cove)

5. Patapat viaduct

"The bridge is elevated 31 meters over sea level. It is a concrete coastal bridge 1.3 km long and connects the Maharlika Highway from Laoag, Ilocos Norte to the Cagayan Valley Region. It rises along the town's coastal mountains, which is the starting point of the Cordillera Mountain Range that snakes through Northern Luzon. It is the 4th longest bridge in the Philippines." (Wikipedia)

So they asked "what are we doing here?" As an engineering grad, I said, great project. And to appreciate the place more, of course a jump shot!

6. Paoay Sand Dunes - 4x4 ride 

Naaah, I'm a poser.  I didn't drive.  Not on the steep hill and worse loose sand.

It was a fun ride.  You should have heard me scream with all the stunts Mr driver gave us.

7. Paoay Sand Dunes - Sand Boarding

I thought it was easy. It was until I scrape my knees and elbows.  The board halted but my body mass was still in motion I flew a distance from the board and end up lying under the sun with sand all over me.  I saw my friend's worried faces, "I'm alive" I shouted then laughed.

8. The Marcos'

Ilocos Norte is a Marcos territory.  To learn about the other side of the story, visit the museum.  The adjacent building is where they laid the body of late president Ferdinand Marcos. No pictures allowed.  

This was his house growing up.  I love the windows, we used to have one like that, capiz shells.

 9.  Old Churches, Buildings, Parks

Sinking Bell Tower
Paoay Church
Provincial Capitol Building

Pamulinawen Fountain in Aurora Park
The revived house of Juan Luna

 10. Food

And of course the best part.

Dragon Fruit

Ilocadia Express


Pinakbet pizza

Crispy Dinugo-an 

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