March 5, 2016

Places to Visit and Things to Do in the Beautiful Island of Batanes Part 1

Batanes is one of the must-visit places in the Philippines. The natural beauty of the island is truly breathtaking and incomparable. Indeed, one can find peace and sweet solitude in this humble place adored with natural wonders and landscapes.

Here are some of the famous landmark and destinations to visit when planning a trip to Batanes:

1. Valugan Boulder Beach

The place is locally known as Chapan, but it is popularly known as Valugan, which means East. It is a scared fishing port of the Ivasay fishermen  most especially those from Brgy. San Joaquin.

These boulders are said to be evidences of geologic forces from the volcanic eruptions of Mt. Iraya around 325 B.C and two others around 286 A.D and 505 A.D. This stretch of boulders and gravel, smoothed over time by the strong waves of the China Sea and the Pacific Ocean is the habitat of a variety of marine crustaceans and mollusks.

2. Dipnaysuhwan Japanese Tunnel

This five-door tunnel, complete with a series of chambers, a bunker that serves as a lookout spot, and a water reservoir, was constructed during the Japanese occupation as a shelter house for soldiers.

Travelers may opt to descend the steep steps of the tunnel to the underground level in almost complete darkness. It leads to an alternative exit with a majestic view of the Batanes landscape. 

3. PAGASA Weather Station (Radar Tukon)

The Basco Pagasa Complex houses the Pagasa Radar Station. Being located at the northernmost part of the country, it is used as the reference point of all typhoons that enter the Philippine area of responsibility.

4. Fundacion Pacita

Nestled on top of a hill is this grandeur lodge with a breathtaking view of the sky and a panoramic seascape overlooking the Pacific Ocean and China Sea. 

It was once the home studio of internationally acclaimed artist Pacita Abad, and was refurbished by her brother Sec. Butch Abad. Some works of new and upcoming artists can be seen on the walls of the lodge to showcase the talents of local artists in the country. 

5. Mt. Carmel Chapel (Tukon Chapel)

The charming little chapel built on a hill is modeled after the traditional stone houses in Batanes. The chapel was built by the prominent Abad family in Batanes. It was a fulfillment of the dreams of the parents of Sec. Butch Abad, to have a church where they can just walk to. the This chapel was also a film location for the local movie You're My Boss starring Coco Martin and Toni Gonzaga.

6. Sto. Domingo Church

Sto. Domingo Cathedral or Basco Cathedral is a yellow-colored church dedicated to Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception and patron saint Santo. Domingo De Guzman.

7. Vayang Rolling Hills

Don't miss out on this breathtaking destination in Batanes. Vayang Rolling Hills is probably one of the most frequented and photographed attraction in Basco. It boasts a scenic view of grassy green slopes overlooking the deep blue sea and sky. Staying here truly is breath of fresh air!

8. Naidi Hills and Basco Lighthouse

Basco Lighthouse is the first among the three lighthouses built in Batanes. The two other lighthouses are located in Sabtang and Mahatao. It is a 6-story building with a viewing deck on the 5th floor. It is such a nice place to watch the sunrise or sunset.

These are just some of the famous attractions and landmarks that one must visit when visiting Batanes. You can visit all the places mentioned above in just one day. 

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