Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Chasing Lights at Patapat Viaduct

Got this photo from:Wikipedia



Arrived in Pagudpud past 5 P.M. but still we have high hopes that we can still see the beauty of Patapat Viaduct. Patapat viaduct is about 30 minutes drive from Barangay Saud, where we are staying for the night. 
While inside the car, I am praying that please let me see it even for a minute, as we passed by Hannah's Beach Resort, I see in the distance Mr. SUN getting ready to set. With high hopes that in a few seconds as we get from one curve to another along the valleys of Northern Luzon I'll be seeing the French Riviera of the Philippines.
Mr. SUN ......wait lang......let us have at least a few shoots

First there was light.......

......the next there was darkness
WOOOOOOOOOOH, could I have prayed for 30 more minutes, I could have explored it more, but I am thankful for a minute that we were able to chase the lights of Mr. SUN in Patapat viaduct. 
According to Wikipedia, Patapat viaduct is elevated 31 meters over sea level, is 1.3 km concrete coastal bridge that 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.
It has been a long day for us, but happy and satisfied that I have seen one of the great engineering construction in the country.
So till my next trip, and I say, It is more Fun Seeing Patapat Viaduct!!!

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Welcome Sunset of Saud, Pagudpud

A familiar sight welcomes travelers to the Town of Pagudpud, PUGUDPUD Arch, seen it a number of times in a shampoo commercial. But a lovely sunset at Saud Beach Resort is the best for me.

I did not make any reservations in Pagudpud, so our driver suggested to check out Saud Beach Resort. Saud Beach Resort is a bit pricey for an overnight stay for a big group like us, still we checked out the resort.
It is one of the few resorts in this side of Pagudpud that has a beachfront, guests can really enjoy sunning and playing in the sand. And yes it has the best SUNSET.
Cousin Maya enjoying the sunset.....

Mr. Craby

Creamy colored sand of Saud Beach Resort

Despite the fact that we are not staying in the resort, they do have a very accommodating staff that brings us around the resort. And no wonder that its rates are higher than that of other resorts, it has been a venue to Miss Earth and other pageant's swimwear competition.

Saud's Restaurant

So I Say; Sunset of Saud is More Fun !!!

Monday, May 28, 2012

Australian Coast in Norte

Driving from Batac, Ilocos Norte to Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte is like a road trip in an Australian coast. Not that I've been to Australia, but I have seen photographs, that while we were traversing the more than 98 kms. Pan-Philippine highway reminded of of that West Australian Coastline.
Ilocos Norte's Coast

West Australia's Coast
It was an hour and 30 minutes ride, but the scenery along the way is worth all the backaches I felt after.
I feel so proud being Pinoy seeing this......and felt sorry to those who prefer traveling abroad rather than exploring our own country

BEAUTIFUL
It's more Fun road tripping along Ilocos Norte's coast.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Glimpse of the Great Son of Ilocos in Batac

Travelling to the North of Philippines requires lot of patience, you need to spend hours inside your vehicle to get to your next destination. Good for me, because I enjoy those quite moments just looking at the scenery along the way.

From Vigan it took us about two hours to get to Batac, Ilocos Norte, I included it to our itinerary because of Empanadahan sa Batac. It is not just the "empanadahan" that makes Batac to every travel itinerary in the North, but it is also the place where the remains of Ilocos' Great Son, late president Ferdinand Marcos, was laid temporarily.
 Our first stop is The Marcos Mausoleum, no cameras allowed inside the mausoleum and I can't remember if there is an entrance fee. When getting inside the mausoleum, you have to line as you walked around the glass encased remains of the former president, with a soft music playing. It is a fleeting experience, but I felt as I looked at him, I know this man has done something great to our country.
Just beside the mausoleum is a museum that houses his life memorabilia; his educational achievements, his writings, furniture he used and even the plate numbers of his vehicles as a statesman.
Across the street from the Marcos Mausoleum and Museum is Batac Empanadahan, as we approach the bridge we din't pass chance to take a photo of Batac Church.
Batac Church
Batac's empanada color is orange while Vigan's empanada is yellow in color, that is the first difference that I notice. We have our afternoon snacks of; empanada, kwek-kwek, soda & leche con yelo.

Kwek-kwek

Batac's empanada
 After our snack we are back on the road to Pagudpud!
Till my next travel.......

Friday, May 25, 2012

Baluarte of Ilocos Sur

Baluarte is defined as a stronghold or a fortress. One of the must see attraction when in Vigan is Baluarte, a privately owned resort by Luis Chavit Singson. 

Baluarte serves as a haven to a number of animal collection, from different species of birds to mini ponies, deer and even Bengal Tiger. It is a 80 hectares piece of land with gently rolling terrains, hills and mountain.



MUST TRY/SEE:

  • Ride the carriage drawn by miniature pony.
  • Meet and greet Ostrich roaming around the resort.
  • Get up close with the Bengal Tiger.



The best thing about the resort is there is no entrance fee to the resort.
So when in Vigan, visit Baluarte a ten minutes drive from Vigan City Center. Till my next travel....

In and Around the Cobblestone Streets of Vigan

I always love to travel and explore old towns, old structures and historic sites. And the city of Vigan is on top of my list next to Zamboanga City.
Vigan is the oldest surviving Spanish colonial city in the country. And when you explore this old city you can do it by walking in and around the famous Calle Crisologo. The city is a typical Spanish city where the public squares/plaza, church and seat of government were located next to each other.

During our visit, I called it "sulit" that even for just 3 hours in the city we were able to see and experience a number of interesting sights and activities.
PLAZA SALCEDO


During our, it is also the Anniversary of the city of Vigan, our vehicle parked beside the Plaza. Noticeable is the obelisk in the center of the plaza, it was named after the Spanish Conquistador Juan de Salcedo, who explored Northern Luzon in 1572-1573.
One interesting fact, Gabriela Silang, the only Filipina who staged a revolt against Spain, was publicly hanged in the plaza.
PLAZA MAESTRO

Bust of Maestro Seling in the center of Plaza Maestro
Located just across Plaza Salcedo, it is named after Jose Sebastian "Maestro Seling" Singson. It is a Commercial Complex, its design is a reminiscent of old central plaza.
CALEZA RIDE AROUND VIGAN
Calesas beside Plaza Salcedo


I find it so romantic to go around in this mode of transport, and in Vigan yes there are a lot of Caleza and friendly "kutsero," who also serves as a personal tour guide. So funny about our Mamang Kutsero is that "he is so showbiz" with his tidbits of information, from the location of a Judy Ann's movie to the house of their bachelor congressman Ronald Singson......
CALLE CRISOLOGO







All visitors to Vigan look for this street the moment they step in Vigan. It was recognized by UNESCO as 1 of the 8 Heritage Sites in the Philippines.
This cobblestone street is named after an Ilocano writer Mena Pecson Crisologo, located in the Mestizo District of Vigan, where most of Chinese-Filipino merchants built their homes.

Today, Calle Crisologo still preserved it's old world charm, not just as a tourist destination but as a commercial center for visitors who want to have a piece of Vigan's products.
SYQUIA MANSION


A heritage house recognized by the National Historical Institute of the Philippines. And my recent trip to Cebu City, I learned that Syquia Mansion is one of two Chinese Houses in Philippines included in the book entitled, Chinese Houses Outside China.
It is located in Quirino Blvd. cor. Salcedo St. and this colonial mansion is the house of former President Elpidio Quirino.
HOUSE OF RONALD SINGSON
Not a historical site but an interesting information to know the house of a very controversial bachelor congressman of Ilocos Sur. The house is Singson's family old house, located is Quirino Blvd.
MUSEO SAN PABLO


A museum just behind Vigan Cathedral.
VIGAN CATHEDRAL


Located across Plaza Salcedo is the Cathedral of Vigan built in 1641.
In just three hours, we were able to see the City of Vigan, Ilocos Sur. This is to...... More Travels