6 Jan 2012

Getting To Ilocos Norte's Important Attractions

  • 6 Jan 2012
  • Lagalag

  • On my second day in Laoag City which happened January 4, 2012, I decided to go see some popular destinations of Ilocos Norte. Now this post is in two parts. The first part tells you how I actually toured these not-to-be-missed spots in Ilocos Norte. On the second part is my recommended way to get around Ilocos Norte to see them in practical way, that is economically and conveniently. I will also talk about do's and don't. For those of you who got here in DirectionsOnWeb blog the first time, this entry is a second part of a series. You might like to read the first part. Kindly go to "To Laoag From Manila In 52 Minutes".

    How To Commute To Ilocos Norte's Tourist Spots

    Paoay Church
    Here's how I went. After I had my free breakfast at 10:21 am, I got out of Isabel Suites and ambled towards the Sinking Bell Tower. I took a tricycle for 11 pesos to the terminal of jeepneys bound for Paoay. I paid Php 34 fare from Laoag City to the site of Paoay Church. Approximate distance is 18 kilometers. Jeepney left its terminal at 10:37 am and I arrived at Paoay Church also known as San Agustin Church at 11:20 am.

    Malacanang of the North
    After enjoying different views of the historical church, I took the same type of trike to Malacanang of the North. I arrived there at 12:33 pm. I was not allowed to enter because of the lunch break. I had my lunch outside which I could say one of the best lunches I had, ever! See separate post about food I enjoyed in Ilocos (coming soon). I entered the Malacanang version of Ilocandia at 1:17 pm and got out at 1:47 pm. The trike at Paoay Church from which I hired one are under strict regulations of the local government. Drivers are so polite and don't take advantage. You don't need to haggle. Since the Php 100 rate from Paoay Church to Malacanang for me is reasonable, I accepted the driver's offer to be my service in going to my subsequent destinations.

    Sand Dunes Ilocos Norte

    We arrived at Sand Dunes exactly 2 pm. It was a bad timing to be on a desert in that hour, so hot that I refused the idea of 4x4 ride. Not really, the rate which Php 1,500 was the culprit hehe. For me, it's exorbitant. I'm on a budget. Kidding aside, the time was not conducive. That's why, you need to read my recommended plan of tour on the second part of this post. Nevertheless, I proceeded and climbed up some higher part of the fore which still mixed with soil and grass. I just took some shots of the actual "Dubai-like" as the locals put it. I could see right in front of me sands billowed from the wind. We left at 2:35 pm on our way to Batac.

    4x4 at Sand Dunes
    In my opinion, not because Ferdinand Marcos was a dictator, we shall ostracize everything about the former President. It's the various parts and stages of our history that made what we are now. So, I went to the Mausoleum of Ferdinand Marcos, arriving there at 3:07 pm.

    Batac Marcos Museum
    After that, I got inside Batac Marcos Museum which is adjacent to the mausoleum. And then, to the Ferdinand Marcos Photo Gallery nearby. We left at 3:43 pm and the driver of the trike recommended some other attractions. But I passed it up. Instead, I asked him to take me to the terminal of buses bound for Laoag which is near to our location in Market area. After paying him the right amount plus tip, I boarded the bus. At 3:51 pm, the bus left the terminal. It was 4:22 pm when I got back to Laoag City. On my way to the hotel, I happened to pass by Ilocos Norte Museum.

    Marcos Photo Gallery
    Now, here's my recommendations for the first timers:

    Don't entertain offers from tricycle drivers from Laoag City for a tour of five tourist destinations. They charged way too much. Imagine Php 1,500?

    As I've said trike drivers in Paoay Church are the kind ones. I highly recommend them.

    Plan your trip that the Sand Dunes will fall as your last or first destination either in the morning or afternoon when the scorching heat is non-existent.

    Okay, since you can trust those trike at Paoay Church, you can arrange the whole tour so that the Sand Dunes fall in the schedule after you've been to San Agustin Chuch, Malacanang of the North, Ferdinand Marcos Mausoleum, Batac Museum, and the Photo Gallery.

    Best time to do this is: Be at Paoay Church at 2 pm if you want to be at Sand Dunes around 4:30 to 5 pm. That way, you also get to avoid the lunch break in Malacanang of the North.

    You can also get to Paoay Church early in the morning and make arrangement with the trike driver to make Sand Dunes as your second destination. They are willing to wait once the agreement is made.

    That's all for the moment. I can't stay longer in the computer right now. Till next. Watch for more.

    What do you think would I see in Vigan aside from those Heritage Village? Mmmmm let us see...


    1. According to the PBA Latest News, PBA teams went here. Both team was composed of veteran, rookie and professional player of PBA, hope you have witnessed that game.

    2. @ apple. Nice to hear that. Too bad I hadn't witnessed the game as I was there on different occasion.

    3. I find this post very helpful and informative. I'm planning to go solo in Ilocos on September. Anyway, how much did you pay for the tricycle tour?

    4. @ Neca Reyes. Thank you for the appreciation. Have fun on your solo trip. The trike tour costed me Php 500 :)