Batanes – North Batan

You were a dream. Then a reality. Now a memory. It’s already been 3 long months, but I’m still going through all the photos I took when in Batanes. It’s difficult to put into words how I feel about this beautiful island in the Philippines that is also the northernmost and smallest province in the country. I can finally relate to all the stories people are telling after visiting the “Home of the Winds.”

My memory is still fresh and I remember few days before the trip when I was crossing out some items on my checklist, I was informed that we didn’t have a reservation which meant we were going to be homeless. I low key panicked and started searching for all the accommodations around the area and super grateful to end up booking Marfel’s Lodge. The staff were very hospitable and helpful in so many ways, from hailing a tricycle (not sure if that’s how they call it) to getting recommendations and directions to must-try restaurants.

The plane landed in Basco Airport at around 8 in the morning. I love taking early morning flights because it almost never gets delayed, and it usually is ahead of the schedule. Marfel’s Lodge provided transport to pick us up in the airport and the funny thing is, the tricycle didn’t even take whole 2 minutes of drive to the place. It’s literally located just across the airport. LOL. We checked in, freshen up, had early brunch, took a power nap, then started the North Batan tour with Kuya Lito (+63 918 216 7440).

I was supposed to travel solo, but when I was doing the computation and listing down all the expenses I came to my senses that it was going to be a big damage. LOL. Don’t get me wrong, Batanes isn’t expensive. It’s just that it’s going to be more convenient to rent a driver who will take you around and have someone who I can share the expenses with. DIY was not an option for me. I’m not even sure if you can do a proper DIY in Batanes. It’s best to just get a tour because the locals know all the ins and outs and the only thing you need to do is just appreciate the beauty of the surroundings, and you are actually helping with their livelihood. Thanks to my “Kaladkarin” HS BFF, Shane, for joining me!

I needed vacation and it was long-overdue already. It’s been crazy 7 months since the last time I flew out of Manila to relax and get a piece of heaven on earth, hence Batanes didn’t dare to disappoint. LOL. We were actually very lucky because it was sunny the whole time we were there, while it was raining cats and dogs the past few days resulting to cancelation of the scheduled tours. Rain shower is common in Batanes, so don’t be surprised when you experience excruciatingly hot weather then all of a sudden the sky will pour its tears out.

The roads you are seeing in the photos are the ones you will be taking while getting around North Batan. Batanes is covered in lush greens and you will never get tired of seeing this kind of view. I mean, is there such thing like this in Manila? You will be grateful that a place like this still exist. I must say that the Ivatans (People of Batanes) are successful in keeping the natural beauty of the island and for maintaining its unutterable magic. So please, if you are reading this and planning to visit Batanes, be responsible enough not to ruin or harm the place in any way possible. Always remember that our actions have direct impact to our environment.

My favourite area in North Batan is the Vayang Rolling Hills. My photos do not give justice because there’s more to it than those landscapes you are seeing with me photobombing in the foreground. LOL. I didn’t want to leave and I could honestly stay  there for hours staring at the vast sea, feeling the wind, and just be at the moment.

I’m not sure what exactly they call this place, but the photos below were taken above the Dipnaysupuan Japanese Tunnel. You might think that the view doesn’t change, but you’ll think otherwise once you witnessed it yourself. It’s different in so many ways, but they all have one thing in common — serenity.

Valugan Boulder Beach that is not meant for swimming. It was my first time seeing a beach like this and as much as we want to get a refreshing dip in the water, we just can’t. LOL. You have no idea how inviting it was as you hear the sound of waves crashing on the shore. Not a problem though because I planned a beach day for us! 🙂

Our trip ended at the Basco Lighthouse where we waited for the sundown. I will never get tired of saying this quote I read in the internet long time ago, “It’s almost impossible to watch a sunset and not dream. ” Surreal.

Batanes is the ultimate dream destination for most Filipinos and I’m lucky to have witnessed its untouched beauty this year. I feel really blessed, and sharing with you my story is a way for me to promote and encourage more Filipinos (and foreigners) to just book a ticket, plan your whole stay, witness the beauty, enjoy your time, and then tell people your story of how you are touched by the beauty of Batanes. There’s a whole lot more out there and I just can’t wait to discover more of the Philippines!

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