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February 29, 2016

Where To Stay in Basco, Batanes- Amboy Hometel and Bernardo's Hotel

One of the most beautiful places to visit and explore in the Philippines is Batanes. It is located at the northernmost part of the country, and also considered to be the smallest in terms of land area and population. It takes about an hour and a half via air to reach Basco, the capital of Batanes, situated in the island of Batan.

Thanks to the continuous effort in promoting this beautiful island, Batanes has been drawing local and international tourists from around the world. Local tourism has significantly increased after the success of the movies Batanes (2007) and You're My Boss (2015).

There are currently 2 airlines that offer flights to Batanes- PAL Express and Skyjet. We went for the latter during our recent trip last December.


Now, the next question is, where do you stay in Batanes?

Most accommodations in Basco are lodges/inns or homestays. It somehow gives a warm and welcoming vibe that perfectly characterizes the Ivatan's hospitable culture.

Basco has around 20+ B&Bs/inns and specialty lodging listed on the net. During our visit, we stayed at Amboy Hometel and Bernardo's Hotel in Chanarian, Basco.



Both hotels are located right across Chanarian Beach- a long stretch of sand and pebble beach perfect for afternoon dips and sunset viewing.

Rooms

Rooms at Bernardo's Hotel are bigger and more spacious compared to the rooms in Amboy Hometel.

Bernardo's Hotel

Amboy Hometel

Breakfast

The group was welcomed with complimentary breakfast upon arrival. I personally like that Bernardo's let their guests choose their preferred breakfast (from a selected menu) for the whole duration of their stay, as compared to Amboy's daily standard breakfast. Nevertheless, breakfast sets from both hotels were pretty good. They also serve complimentary coffee or tea.

longsilog breakfast at Bernardo's Hotel

Tapa and egg breakfast at Amboy Hometel

Toiletries and Amenities

Although rooms at Bernardo's are slightly bigger, Amboy Hometel offers complimentary basic toiletries like shampoo, toothbrush, and  toothpaste. You have to pay for these at Bernardo's, and they are not cheap since products and goods in Batanes are generally expensive. Amboy Hometel has complimentary room slippers too. Both hotels offer complimentary wifi access, though I find Bernardo's connection better.

Outdoor Area

Amboy Hometel and Bernardo's Hotel offer a different kind of ambiance to their guests. Amboy has a homey and charming vibe, while Bernardo's has a modern minimalist structure. I personally like the outdoor area at Amboy Hometel as they have more tables and wider area to accommodate in-house guests.



Service and Friendliness of Staff

Staff at both hotels were friendly and accommodating. Service was excellent and we didn't encounter any problem during our stay. I guess the Ivatans are really known to be friendly and hospitable in nature.

Activities

Both hotels offer bikes rentals for P50/hour.

Rates

Amboy Hometel rates:
P2,600(double occupancy)
P3,000 (triple sharing)
P4,000(family room)

Bernardo's Hotel Rates:
P2,800 (double occupancy)
P3,300 (triple sharing)
P3,800 (quadruple sharing)

*includes airport transfers and daily breakfast

Whatever you choose between the two hotels, expect to have a great experience in Batanes with clean and comfortable accommodation after a day-long tour itinerary.