There are so many AMAZING places to see in Ilocos. There are a lot of activities to do like swimming, beach bumming, devouring Ilocos authentic dishes, museum hopping, etc. My visit to this place 5 years ago is a bit full-packed though I wasn’t able to visit all, which means there are so many things to look forward to on my future Ilocos tour.
Here are some amazing places to visit and wonderful things to do in Ilocos.
1. Bangui Windmills (Bangui, Ilocos Norte)
These fifteen magnificent white giants of Bangui measures 23 storeys high that they look like gigantic electric fans up-close. They said that there is a spectacular view of sunset at this place. Though, I wasn’t able to witness the sunset at Bangui during my visit.
2. Saud Beach (Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte)
Many said the it’s like Boracay of the North. But, I can neither affirm nor oppose as I have never been to Boracay (yet). However, I enjoy the beautiful Saud Beach especially that the Bangui Windmills are visible from the other end of the coast. The place is very serene as there are not much establishments and partying at night – it just offers its natural beauty.
3. Cape Bojeador Lighthouse (Burgos, Ilocos Norte)
Cape Bojeador Lighthouse is majestically sitting on top of a hill overlooking the West Philippine Sea. It is one of the oldest and most visited Spanish lighthouse in Ilocos Norte and is the most accessible of all the lighthouses in North Luzon. Cape Bojeador Lighthouse serves as a station point for ships veering towards the Pacific Coast heading to Babuyan Channel, among others. It was build and completed way bay in 1892. Many that the lighthouse also offers a magnificent view of Sunset in Ilocos Norte.
During the time that we visited Cape Bojeador Lighthouse, they still allow people to climb upstairs the lighthouse itself. We were so lucky, because nowadays, tourists are no longer allowed to enter the lighthouse.
The majestic view of West Philippine Sea on top of Cape Bojeador Lighthouse
4. Kapurpurawan Rock Formation (Burgos, Ilocos Norte)
This beautiful rock formation located just few minutes away from Cape Bojeador Lighthouse, was formed by the forces of the ocean on the rocky coast of Burgos, Ilocos Norte. The view on top of the rock formation is just breathtaking!
Kapurpurawan Rock Formation from afar
Kapurpurawan Rock Formation up close
Kapurpurawan Rock Formation at a closer look
5. Blue Lagoon or Maira-ira Beach (Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte)
Blue Lagoon or Maira-ira Beach is beautiful in its own way. Its sand quality is off white and grainy which according to many is almost similar to the sands of Boracay. Blue Lagoon is one large blue swimming pool! The water is bluish and its underwater floor is soft because it is purely sand. There also no resorts very near the beach so you will be “forced” to just enjoy nature’s beauty. Unfortunately, the sun sets behind Blue Lagoon’s back which is covered by the mountains.
6. Paoay Church (Paoay, Ilocos Norte)
The church was started in 1694, was completed in 1710, and was rededicated in 1896. The church is spectacular and attuned to the current times as it looks three-dimensional – an asset which most churches in the Philippines do not have.
7. Patapat Viaduct (Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte)
Patapat Viaduct is an elevated concrete highway constructed in between Pasaleng Bay and mountainside of North Luzon. This viaduct was constructed to solve the problem of landslides in the area which caused several vehicular accidents in the past. The view here is spectacular!
8. Bantay-Abot Cave (Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte)
Bantay abot cave is not really a cave. It is a hill that was wrecked by an earthquake in the 80’s leaving a hole in the middle, which is probably the reason why it is named, “Bantay-abot.” The top of the cave is covered with lush greens thus adding the beauty of the cave. To get inside the cave, one need to go down a few concrete staircase and a rocky part going inside the hole. When inside the hole, the blue waters of Maira-ira beach or Blue Lagoon and on the other side of the hole is the Timangtang Rock – a bell-shaped rock in the coast of Barangay Balaoi, Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte.
9. Kabigan Falls (Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte)
It’s the famous falls at Ilocos Norte. I’m not sure it there are other falls in Ilocos Norte but it is the only falls we got to visit during our vacation. The falls will require you a 30-minute trek before you can see its beauty.
10. Calle Crisologo (Vigan, Ilocos Sur)
This mestizo district of Vigan called Calle Crisologo or Mena Crisologo Street, is a must-see place in Ilocos. It’s like riding a time machine and going back to the Spanish Era with the Spanish-style houses and road made of cobblestones.
11. Herencia de Paoay (Paoay, Ilocos Norte)
After some tour in Ilocos, it pays a lot to visit this local restaurant which is located very near Paoay Church. They offer authentic Pinakbet Pizza (pinakbet is a famous Ilokano dish) and the classic halo-halo.
Herencia’s famous Pinakbet Pizza
There are several beautiful places in Ilocos such as the Fort Ilocandia, Sand Dunes of Suba, Chavit Singson’s Baluarte Zoo, Marcos Museum, and Malacanang of the North. These places are as majestic as the eleven places I enumerated above. Though, the eleven places above still top my list.