SUPER BACKPOSTING: 2009 Cluster Outing in Ilocos! :)
It has been a tradition that a cluster outing is being organized right after the so-called busy season; and during 2009, our summer outing was held at Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte!!! :) I rarely join in my cluster outing, but that year, I was excited for the Pagudpud trip as I’ve been wanting to see the place! :D
When: June 5-7, 2009 – Right after I got back from a 2-week vacation leave, which I spent in my hometown, Zamboanga City
With Whom: JDC Clustermates
I won’t be detailing on the activities that we’ve had and all the aberyas that we’ve experienced during this trip, as I can hardly recall all of the details! hahaha! —the bad side about backposting! I’d just like to show the places that we’ve visited in Ilocos, and a brief description of them. Copy-paste hahahaha! :D
Fort Ilocandia Resort Hotel is a 4 star hotel situated in Barrio Calayab, Laoag City, Ilocos Norte, Philippines. It is a 10-minute drive from Laoag International Airport. The resort has 267 rooms with private balconies offering a view of the sea and possessing the features and qualities of Ilocano century-old living quarters and constructed to accentuate the antiquity of a colonial house.
CAPE BOJEADOR LIGHTHOUSE
It was raining so hard during our trip to Pagudpud, kaya di kame mashado nakapagpikchur ng maayus-ayus. Then during the time that we visited Cape Bojeador, the door to the top of the lighthouse was closed, so hanggang hagdan na lang ang pagpipikchur namin! hehehe! Marami pang pix, like overlooking the sea from the lighthouse pero di ko na kase mahanap ang ibang mga pictures, binura ko na ata yung iba! haha!
The Cape Bojeador Lighthouse, also known as the Burgos Lighthouse in Burgos is another important landmark in Ilocos Norte much like the Sta. Monica Parish Church in Sarrat, with both being centuries old. The lighthouse was constructed during the Spanish colonial period in the country.
According to Wikipedia “The Cape Bojeador lighthouse was part of the Spanish government’s master plan of illuminating the Philippine archipelago. The project commenced with the execution of the lighthouses in the northern and western part of the Philippines and those around Iloilo and Cebu. The Burgos lighthouse was first lit on March 30, 1892.”
VILLA DEL MAR IVORY BEACH RESORT
This is where we stayed for the duration of our trip. Beach games were also held in this beach hehehe! Pink Team hooray!! :D
Maganda yung sand, maganda yung beach, pero nakakatakot lang, parang biglang-lalim agad kahit sa may bandang shore pa lang. :)
Villa Del Mar has been accredited as a Class “A” resort by the Department of Tourism (DOT). At present the resort has 30 rooms which can accomodate around 130 guests. Other facilities and services include swimming pool, canteen and restaurant with WIFI access, mini bar, souvenir shop, picnic areas, multi-purpose pavilion, mini-plaza, parking area, car rental, guided tours and outdoor sports. Activities in the resort are swimming, snorkeling, fishing, boat riding, beach volleyball, badminton, billiards, videoke, board games and mahjong. During summer, the resort conducts beach parties like bikini open, live bands, discos and cocktail parties. Annually, VDM also holds beauty pageants for different universities, company seminars and is lately becoming a popular wedding venue. ~ http://www.villadelmarpagudpud.com/
MAIRA-IRA BEACH / BLUE LAGOON
Sarap mag-swimming sa beach na ‘to!!! :D Dito rin kame nag-banana boat ride (my first time! ahaha!), sarap!! We requested though na ‘wag kaming ihulog habang nasa banana boat, mahirap kaya akyatin ulit ‘pag nalaglag! hahaha! kaya kapit to the max para hindi malaglag! :p I love the aquamarine color of the water, nung nasa malalim na kame, sarap tumalon, pero takot ako! haha!
Daming options sa beach na ‘to: pwede din mag-kayak. Others opted for the banca-ride going to another island–sayang! ba’t ko ba pinalampas yung pagkakataong yun! tsk!
Maira-ira point is the name given to Luzon mainland’s northernmost tip. Nestled in its confines is an unspoiled, white-sand cove that has yet to become popular with the mainstream beach-combing crowd. The beach is known simply as Maira-ira or blue lagoon. On calm days, when the notorious Ilocos surf is taking a break, the waters off the cove can be still as a pond, mirroring the azure sky to form a stunning blue loch. The sparkling fine sand is even better than its well-known neighbor, Saud beach (or Pagudpud). With virtually no tourist accommodations, save for a couple of simple nipa huts, the whole place exudes a charm of isolation. Hemmed by hills around its perimeter, swimming and basking on the crescent cove can be a very private experience. It is a serene place, lending much to the feeling of being at the frontier.
More info on http://www.waypoints.ph/detail_gen.php?wpt=maira.
We passed along the Patapat Viaduct to get to Bantay-Abot Cave. :)
They call this a cave but it is more of a mountain with a hole. Bantay Abot Cave is just a few minutes away from Blue Lagoon and it is a worthy stop-over when you head to the beach. The cave has a lustrous vegetative cover on top and a door-like opening on the middle of the mountain. Inside the cave, you can hear the waves as they splash on the rocks of the mountain.
We hiked for about 30 minutes to from the entrance going to the falls, kasama na picture-taking dun! hehehe! Pinalagpas ko na naman ang pagkakataong maligo sa falls, kase nahahassle-lan ako sa pagpapalit ng damit; sabi kase bawal sumakay sa bus pag basa! Yun pala, pwede naman, basta wag lang umupo! ehehe! tsk!
Kabigan Falls is an enchanting falls located at the eastern part of Barangay Balaoi and it is around 1.8 kilometers away from the national highway. This 80 feet waterfall is surrounded by thick forest and well-known for its concaved basin.
First stop on our way back to Manila!
Paoay Church is the Roman Catholic parish church of the municipality of Paoay, Ilocos Norte in the Philippines. Completed in 1710, the church is famous for its distinct architecture highlighted by the enormous buttresses on the sides and back of the building. In 1993, the church was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site as one best examples of the Baroque Churches of the Philippines.
Paoay church is prime example of Earthquake Baroque architecture, which is the Philippine interpretation of the European Baroque adapted to the seismic condition of the country. Destructive earthquakes are common and have destroyed earlier churches all throughout the country. Aside from Baroque, the church facade also exudes Javanese architecture reminiscent of Borobudur of Java.
Just a short stop at this site:
The Marcos Museum and Mausoleum integrates both memorabilia storage and the current resting place of Ferdinand Edralin Marcos. It is situated in the heart of Batac City, Ilocos Norte. The museum shows memorabilia of the late president, from his stint in the armed forces down to his presidency. The large and solemn mausoleum contains the glass-encased coffin in which Marcos’ embalmed body has been on public display since shortly after his remains were brought home in 1993.
There are still a lot to see in Ilocos that were not included in our trip’s itinerary. On our way back to Manila, we could have made a stop in Bangui to see the Bangui Windmills, pero ewan, wala ng energy ang mga pips hahaha! sobrang hangover kase sa i-session the night before. Kahit ako man, sobrang sama ng pakiramdam ko sa buong byahe: yung feeling na nasusuka pero walang lumalabas! yung tipong bawat dighay mo, lasang vodka! ehehe! Dun ko unang isinumpa ang vodka! hahaha!
Bangui Wind Farm is a wind farm in Bangui, Ilocos Norte, Philippines. The wind farm uses 20 units of 70-metre (230 ft) high Vestas V82 1.65 MW wind turbines, arranged on a single row stretching along a nine-kilometer shoreline off Bangui Bay, facing the South China Sea. —http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bangui_Wind_Farm
Other places that you could visit in Ilocos are the:
Kapurpurawan Rock Formation in Burgos, Ilocos Norte – Read this post from Ironwulf! :) hahay!
Baluarte in Vigan, Ilocos Sur
I hope I could go back to Ilocos, nang mapuntahan ko yang mga yan! :D