12 MUST SEE PLACES IN ILOCOS NORTE
- Paoay Sand Dunes
Top on my list is the Paoay San Dunes. Hop in a 4X4 jeep and experience an adrenaline rush as they go up and down the terrain. It feels like a roller coaster ride without the harness.A sand boarding comes as a bonus for the brave ones.
- Paoay Church
Picture perfect, Paoay Church is formally called St. Augustine Catholic Parish Church.Paoay Church is one of the oldest churches in the Philippines and inscribed on the UNESCO’s World Heritage list. It’s known for its distinct architecture highlighted by the huge buttresses at the side and the back. These buttresses help protect the church from an earthquake.
- Malacañang of the North “Malacanang ti Amianan”
Built overlooking the legendary Paoay Lake is the imposing two-storey Malacanang of the North. The mansion was built as the official residence of the President Marcos in Ilocos Norte. The Malacanang of the North was designed to resemble a 19th Century “bahay na bato.” It is complete with bedrooms, dining area, kitchen, an office, a spacious ballroom on the second floor, and even had a large swimming pool which is no longer used today.
- Bangui Windmill
The famous Bangui Wind Farm uses 20 units of 70-meter (230 ft) high Vestas V82 1.65 MW wind turbines, arranged in a single row stretching along a nine-kilometer shoreline off the Bangui Bay, facing the West Philippine Sea.Phase I of the North Wind power project in Bangui Bay consists of 15 wind turbines, each capable of producing electricity up to a maximum capacity of 1.65 MW, for a total of 24.75 MW. The 15 onshore turbines are spaced 326 meters (1,070 ft) apart, each 70 meters (230 ft) high, with 41 meters (135 ft) long blades, with a rotor diameter of 82 meters (269 ft) and a wind-swept area of 5,281 square meters (56,840 sq ft). Phase II, was completed on August 2008, and added 5 more wind turbines with the same capacity, and brought the total capacity to 33 MW. All 20 turbines describe a graceful arc reflecting the shoreline of Bangui Bay, facing the West Philippine Sea.
Set majestically on a hill overlooking the South China Sea, the Faro Cabo Cape Bojeador located approximately 35 kilometers north of the City of Laoag, the lighthouse is the most accessible of all lighthouses in the north of the Island of Luzon. It was built in 1892 and is still functioning to date, serving ships passing by the northern part of South China Sea. This is one of the famous historical landmarks in the province of Ilocos Norte. It is the highest lighthouse in the Philippines above sea level on top of a hill named Vigia de Nagparitan (estimated a total height of around 160 meters high; tower height = 17 meters approximate) and is located in the town of Burgos.
- Kapurpurawan Rock Formation
Beautifully crafted by nature, the Kapurpurawan Rock Formations are located just a few minutes further from the lighthouse.Kapurpurawan got its name from the Ilocano word “puraw,” which means white. It’s really amazing how these rock formations were formed. It’s a 10-minute walk from the main base so make sure to go there early morning to avoid the heat of the sun. If you want to go there in the afternoon, make sure to bring an umbrella or a hat, a bottle of water and forget your sunblock.
- Patapat Bridge
Elevated 31 meters over sea level, the Patapat Viaduct is a concrete coastal bridge 1.3 km long and connects the Maharlika Highway from Laoag, Ilocos Norte to the Cagayan Valley Region. The bridge 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.
- Juan Luna Shrine
Houses the reproductions of Juan Luna’s Paintings, the Shrine in Badoc, Ilocos Norte, is a reconstruction of the two-storey house in which the patriot and foremost Filipino painter was born on October 24, 1857.The original house burned down in 1861. Declared as a National Historical Site on October 7, 1976, as per Resolution No. 3 of the Pambansang Sharing Pangkasaysayan by virtue of Section 4 of the Presidential Decree No. 260 dated August 1, 1973.
- Kabigan Falls
The Kabigan Falls is a very popular place to visit when in Pagudpud and lie in Barangay Balaoi. The waterfalls cascade some 87 feet into a natural concave basin and its somewhat spectacular when there is plenty of water flowing. The name is derived from the word “kaibigan” or “magkaibigan” The Falls are easily accessible about 1.5 kilometers from the national highway. It’s an easy 30-minute walk and you can rent an off-road vehicle at the entrance.
10 .Santa Monica Church and Bantay Bell Tower
The Santa Monica Church and the bell tower are considered two of the oldest structures in the province, as the bell tower was built in 1590 and the church was in the following year. The place, especially the bell tower, is a tourist attraction.The original beauty of the structures is still preserved until today. The view when you’re on the bell tower is magnificent.