Saturday, April 30, 2011

The culture-filled beauty of Vigan, Ilocos Sur


Getting There: Vigan City, Philippines
By Land
The 408 km stretch from Manila to Vigan City is a comfortable seven hour ride along the scenic Ilocos Highway. Partas Bus Co., Dominion and the Philippine Rabbit Bus Line regularly ply the Manila-Vigan route.
By Air
Laoag International Airport is serviced thrice a week by Philippine Airlines to and from Manila. Public transportation is available for trips from Laoag City to Vigan City which is 80 kilometers or 1 1/2 hour drive away.

Getting Around:

To get to other municipalities, towns or nearby provinces, you can choose from a variety of public transportation - buses, mini-buses or jeepneys.

These local taxis are widely available around the province. For just a minimal cost, you can reach nearby destinations or even hire them further as you please. Basically, the minimum fare per passenger is PhP 8.00.
This centuries-old horse-drawn carriage is indeed a popular icon in Ilocos Sur. Foreigners and local tourists make it a point to traverse the streets of Vigan and nearby towns through the calesa. Ride on and feel the aura of the past!
This is a customized army jeep which was left by the Americans during the Second World War. Resized, remodeled, and shined, this multi-purpose vehicle is can accommodate from 20 to 30 passengers which takes them to other municipalities and cities in Ilocos Sur. It is also a famous symbol for the Philippines, known for its artistic designs, colors and horn sounds.
If you want to reach a nearby town a little bit faster than the jeepney, then take the mini-bus. Most are not air-conditioned (although there are already some which are) since various cargoes especially market goods and almost all people from all walks of life ride on them.
If you wish to drive on your own in exploring Ilocos Sur, there is good list of accredited van or car owners which offer car rental services. The option of hiring a driver (probably the vehicle owner at that) is also available. Please inquire at the Ilocos Sur Tourism Information Center for more details. 

Place of Interest:
  • Vigan Cathedral/St. Paul Metropolitan Cathedral
  • Archbishop's Residence 
  • Father Jose Burgos' Residence
  • Plaza Burgo
  • Vigan Empanadaan
  • Baluarte
  • Pagburnayan
  • Hidden Garden
  • Quezon Avenue - the business center of Vigan
  • Plaza Salcedo
  • Mena Crisologo Street/Vigan Heritage Village
  • Syquia Mansion
  • Crisologo Museum   

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