ILOCANDIA DAY 1 [03.25.2016]

This was so unplanned! My friend, Edz, asked me to come exactly two weeks before the trip. I wanted to go because my RDs are on Wed and Thurs that week and I just need to file a VL on Fri and Sat. I immediately emailed my TL about it and the next day, he sent me an updated schedule, granting my VLs. I was super happy! It’s been a while since I’ve actually gone out of town during Holy Week. ​I deposited my payment on March 15th and I just waited for the day to come. It’s the first time that I don’t have to plan an itinerary since we’re going with a travel agency. I only packed that same day. Good thing I didn’t actually forget anything.

Our scheduled departure time was at 10:00 PM at Ospital ng Paranaque since that’s where my friend works. I was actually worried that I won’t arrive there on time cause it was super traffic! I left our apartment in Makati at 7:00 PM and I went to Market Market first to buy some stuff. My original plan was to take a jeepney to Sucat then another jeepney to OsPar. But , there’s a line of people everywhere! So my only other option is to take the Ayala route. I took the BGC bus to Ayala but it’s super traffic! I so swear. When I got to Ayala, I was so overwhelmed by the amount of people waiting. I felt like everyone in Metro Manila is in Ayala! LOL! I decided to walk to the shuttle terminal for folks going South. I wasn’t sure cause I haven’t tried that before so I texted my friend, Celine since she takes that shuttle everyday from work. I was amazed that it was super fast. Thank goodness for Skyway. I got off somewhere along Sucat Road and took another jeepney to OsPar. I got there at around 9:30 PM. YAY! Thank goodness for those shuttles and Skyway! LOL!

We took off at exactly 10:00 PM but since it’s Holy Week, heavy traffic everywhere. I slept most of the ride and I think it was around 9:00 AM the next day when we arrived at our first stop: Bantay Church and Bell Tower. We had breakfast first near there before embarking on our day tour. LOL. It’s funny though cause my friend and I were wearing long sleeves and leggings because we realized we’ll be in the van overnight. But when we arrived the next day, it was so hot that I had to change into my shorts at the comfort room located near the church. I had to wear my long sleeves the entire day though. Yup, I was wearing it for more than 24 hours. LOL.

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In front of Bantay Church.
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Didn’t realize I have a good shot of the Bell Tower.
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Kinda like this, except there are photobombers 🙁
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The most decent photo I have in front of the Bell Tower. LOL. Notice our couple outfits? That was so unplanned! Hahahaha!
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At the entrance~
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At the exit LOL

Then, since it’s in Vigan, too, we went to Baluarte. It was super hot though so we didn’t really get to tour around much. After taking some pictures, we went to the cafeteria and ate halo halo. I will give special mention to the mangoes that we bought outside Baluarte. Super delicious

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There are a lot stalls on the way to the main gate of Baluarte.
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Mandatory selfie at the entrance~
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At the door of the souvenir shop.
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Alin, alin ang naiba?
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Taken inside the souvenir shop – where it’s cold and has lotsa pandas 🙂

We then drove to Batac, Ilocos Norte, where we had lunch first. We visited the Marcos Museum and Mausoleum. There is no entrance fee to the Mausoleum but there’s a warning that you can’t take pictures inside. There was one guy who started taking pictures and I was like, “Kuya, bawal mag-picture!”. LOL! The guards then went to him and asked him to delete the photos he took. I’m such a sumbungera! But really, if we can’t take photos, then he shouldn’t get away with it. Also, it just shows how undisciplined people are. >_< There’s a ₱50 entrance fee to the museum though. Since we’re already there, why the hell not go inside, right? I’m just a little bothered by people who actually believed what the tour guide was saying. Ok, I understand that they have to glorify Marcos since it’s a museum and all but once you’re out, you have to remember everything you’ve learned in school and not just believe whatever you heard. I’m proud that I remember some of the facts I learned from documentaries we watched in college. Also, when you’re older, shouldn’t you be more aware of what actually happened since you were already alive back then? UGH.

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Looks so lonely.
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Sorry, pero tawang-tawa ko sa butong pakwan at bakya. I had to Google the relevance. :p
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LOL. I look like a solo traveller. Let me explain. I have friends, I just went out earlier than everyone else. 😛
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LOL. Tawang-tawa ko sa ichura ko dito, tapos yung background pa. LOL. Vote wisely. LOL.

We went to Malacanang ti Amianan afterwards. We were supposed to go to Paoay Church first but since it’s almost 5:00 PM (which is the closing time), we went there first. No entrance fee! YAY! It’s actually a good place to take a lot of pictures in but there’s so many people here! I barely got to see all the rooms because it’s too crowded. Really love the house though. It’s so refreshing to have a lake right outside.

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Got to do a quick snap of Paoay Church when we passed by it OTW to Malacanang ti Amianan.
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LOL. I looked so sad. Actually, at this point, all I wanted was to brush my teeth. 😛
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Malacanang ti Amianan front view.
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LOL. Daming tao! Just showing the lake though.
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Ang babae sa bintana.
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LOL! May photo pala kame sa stairs!
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Daming tao diba?
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And outside the house~

MORE PHOTOS OUTSIDE 🙂

We then went to the Paoay Sand Dunes, where I just took some pictures in the large vast of sand and then went inside the van and took some rest. LOL. Some of our companions went to try the activities but I opted out. I think I’m ok without having to try it. I’ll live. Haha!

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Ang ganda ng mata ko dito!
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Sand sand everywhere~ My hair’s very messy though.
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Ganda ng sunset!

Our last stop was the Paoay Church. Ok, I must admit that I’m super excited for this one. If you’re a Mario Maurer fan then it would be a no-brainer. LOL. I can’t believe it’s been 4 years since this movie was shown. LOL. Seriously though, Paoay Church is so beautiful. I’m glad we went there at night cause I think it’s more beautiful with all the lights. The cupcake shop Erich owns in that movie is actually Herencia Restaurant which is right in front of the church. That’s where we had our dinner. We weren’t able to try their famous pakbet pizza but we did try their pakbet and it was delicious! It was a really nice way to end our night.

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I don’t have a good photo from this angle. I look like a very very tired ghost on all of them.
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From across the road, near the fountain.
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It’s so beautiful at night! <3
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Ang haggard na namin sa Herencia!

Our accommodation for this trip is located near Laoag, in a town called Nangalisan. I really don’t know the name of the place but according to Google Map, it’s near the airport. LOL. It’s a townhouse and since there are 11 of us, we were housed in one place. There are two rooms upstairs, 1 bath each on the 1st and 2nd floor, with its own living room and kitchen. I seriously loved it. Only problem is, there are no mirrors anywhere. (Just small ones in the kitchen). I don’t even wanna think why. LOL.

Right after arriving in the hotel, we all just wanted to use the bathroom / toilet. All of us haven’t taken a shower, brushed our teeth and slept on a proper bed for over 24 hours. While waiting for my turn, I seriously took some rest on the bed. I just wanted to straighten my body for a while.

Bummer though is that similar to my Caramoan experience, internet connection in Ilocos is so poor. I registered for mobile internet for 3 days but I wasn’t able to use cause I always have no signal. I seriously had very limited internet access during the entire time.

Talk to me~