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ilocos trip on a tight schedule

by mahru03 Online Now Oct 17, 2011 at 10:51 PM

Hi there,

a friend of mine and I were planning to visit Ilocos. Plan is taking a bus from manila to ilocos on thursday night so we can start the tour on Friday morning up to Saturday afternoon. Then we'll take a bus on Saturday night going back to Manila. Is the time too short to visit the nice places in Ilocos? What are the most recommended places that we should prioritize visiting, considering the tight schedule?
We hope to visit Laoag-Pagudpod and Vigan but just picking the best spot to visit on each place to cover the 3 locations.

Hope you can help us.

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5 Answers
  • asianbelle's Profile Photo

    Re: ilocos trip on a tight schedule

    by asianbelle Online Now Oct 17, 2011 at 11:20 PM

    Really tight! Personally, I would suggest picking 1-2 places only (say Vigan-Laoag or Laoag-Pagudpud). In fact, picking Vigan and Pagudpud might not be a good idea as you'll be spending a lot of time traveling between the 2 points. Roughly, it's 5-6 hours one way. Having said that, picking the best spot in each place is not also time efficient move. Since you have traveled so far, might as well visit all the spots within the place ;)

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  • Re: ilocos trip on a tight schedule

    by mahru03 Online Now Oct 18, 2011 at 12:27 AM

    Hi asianbelle,

    thanks for your reply :-) as a newbie, I've been reading this forum regarding ilocos trip and I saw that your very accomodating and helpful in answering their questions.

    So which of the 2 trips you would prefer? Vigan-Laoag or Laoag-Pagudpud? Is 4K/person already enough for all the expenses

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  • asianbelle's Profile Photo

    Re: ilocos trip on a tight schedule

    by asianbelle Online Now Oct 18, 2011 at 1:01 AM

    you're welcome ;)

    if you're a "beach" person, i would suggest laoag-pagudpud with side trips to burgos cape bojeador lighthouse and bangui windmills. in pagudpud, you can go to blue lagoon, kabigan falls, patapat bridge.

    if you're into heritage/history, then it's vigan-laoag with side trips to paoay, batac, sarrat, and bantay. vigan's city proper is compact and you can easily tour it in half day. there's the old houses along heritage village, 2-3 museums, clay pot making, as well as the city's plazas and church; a 20 minute trike ride is chavit singson's baluarte zoo; 5 mins trike ride from vigan city is bantay bell tower (along national highway); then you can take a jeep to batac (marcos mausoleum and museum), then trike ride to paoay church and farther is malacanang of the north.

    in laoag, there's the sinking bell tower, museum, monuments and the popular public market where you can buy bagnet, etc. there's also fort ilocandia (for photo opp) and sand dunes.

    since you asked for my preference, i'd go for vigan-laoag, given your tight sched. maybe allot 5k/head to be on the safe side.

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  • semper.max's Profile Photo

    Re: ilocos trip on a tight schedule

    by semper.max Online Now Oct 18, 2011 at 8:07 AM

    Asianbelle's reply is very thorough. I visited most of the places she stated and I dont think two days will be enough if you include Pagudpud and the other sites between Laoag and Pagudpud. Since you will be on public transportation, I would agree with asianbelle's advice. If you were really to explore and savor the different sites, I suggest you limit yourself to Vigan and Laoag.

    Just one additional stop to Asianbelle's itinerary though. You may want to stop by Herencia Cafe (infront of Paoay church) and try their Ilocos-inspired pizzas (Pinakbet pizza, Dinuguan pizza, Poque-poque, just to name a few).

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  • PinoyTraveler's Profile Photo

    Re: ilocos trip on a tight schedule

    by PinoyTraveler Online Now Oct 20, 2011 at 12:02 AM

    It can be done. i was there last month, as guide to a first-timer friend and we made it in about the same time as yours (friday nite to sunday nite) and she enjoyed the trip. You can do this:

    Leave manila Thursday night, pick the buses of Maria De Leon that go straight to Pagudpud. Check-in at Saud area then immediately tour the place by hiring a tricycle (Patapat, Maira-ira, Bangui, Cape Bojeador) then back to Saud, you'll still have time for a sunset swim if you didn't do it at Blue Lagoon.

    Early Saturday morning get on a bus to Laoag. Breakfast and roam the area. Hop by bus to Batac, roam the place then jeep to Paoay. Yes, Herencia's will be a good place to have lunch. Malacanang Ti Amianan and Fort Ilocandia will be pushing it too tight kasi malalayo yun. Jeep back to Batac (corner where buses pass by) and move on to Vigan. Take a trike to Baluarte if you really want to see the place. Otherwise... roam the heritage village - nicer in the afternoons till early evenings

    Take a trike to Partas bus station hop on your choice schedule back to Manila!

    Note: you can stay Friday night in Laoag instead of Pagudpud (that's what we did) to see/experience more, so you can also leave early for Batac and Paoay on Saturday since you'll have seen most of Laoag by Friday afternoon/evening.

    Many of the places to visit are in my blog (from a previous visit).

    Enjoy!

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