Who in their right minds would go on a vacation knowing there’s a typhoon approaching? *raises hand* Haha! Call us crazy. Call us stupid. But did we die? No. We are very much alive and kicking with stories to tell. 😋
I’ve always wanted to drive to Pagudpud but I never had the chance to. Until one day when I was looking for a vacation spot for my boyfriend’s birthday, I realised it’s about time to finally do it!
It was only 3 weeks before his birthday when I started planning everything for this trip. When I’ve come up with the itinerary, I told him about it. He was as excited as I was coz he also wanted to long drive. And to make the celebration merrier, we tagged 2 friends along who happens to love long drives as well! HAHA!
Okay, okay… I won’t go into too much detail on everything that happened to us in this trip. I just wanted to share our ITINERARY (with red marks on the places we weren’t able to visit because of the typhoon) and the PICTURES that tell stories.
We reached this point in Pagudpud at exactly 11:10 AM. Race car drivers here! Well, we only had 3 stopovers from Manila to this arch. It was at that time when I read on the news that typhoon Ineng was just on our tail. So yeah, this gotta be fun!
Initially, our plan was to check in at Casa Consuelo, get lunch, and start going around Pagudpud. But since we were very tired and sleepy, we decided to just stay at the resort and rest.
CASA CONSUELO was at the very end of the strip from where we took a left turn (landmark: Balaoi Barangay Police Outpost) from the main road. Along the way, we passed by the places we were supposed to visit that day – Timmangtang Rock, Bantay Abot Cave and Maira-ira Cove.
This was what greeted us when we reached the resort… Beautiful! But we were starting to feel the wrath of Ineng already. See those dark clouds?
Did I mention that we were starving? Here’s what we had for lunch while enjoying the view from their restaurant: Seafood Platter for only P1,600. Yum!
After eating… Knocked out. Haha! We stayed in their Triplex Casa for P4,000/night inclusive of breakfast for 4.
When we got up, we started taking pictures around the resort.
Casa Consuelo was serene and peaceful it felt like we had the whole place to ourselves. We all loved it! If you are looking for a quiet and relaxing place to stay in in Pagudpud, I highly recommend this resort! The location, the service, and the food were above expectation!
We woke up the following morning to the sounds of thunder and heavy rain. Typhoon Ineng got stronger! The whole Ilocos region was under signal number 3! OH MY. We waited a little for the rain to die down until we realised it was pointless. So, we went on as planned.
Before anything else, we made sure to check Patapat Viaduct with the hope of at least getting a decent picture of it. However, when we got there, it was really impossible to go down the car. Look at how bad the weather was… (screenshots from my GoPro video)
The winds were really strong that sometimes it felt like it would topple our car anytime.
Our second destination was the Bangui Windmills. This, ladies and gentlemen, was the most dangerous thing we ever did there. We went further away from the main road to get a closer look of the windmills. We took a scenic route where trees were scattered everywhere that we had to remove some of them to get through plus the water was almost spilling out of the rice fields. Man! What were we thinking?! Haha! We went all through that just to get here. Take a look at those waves… (screenshots from my GoPro video)
Also, imagine the pain we felt with those wind-blown sands piercing through our skins the whole time we were outside the car. Crazy bunch!
Thankfully, we were able to get out of there before it was too late. Our next destination: Kapurpurawan Rock Formation. Aside from our desire to long drive, Kapurpurawan was one of those places we really looked forward to visit. We were supposed to see this… (photo taken from google)
Instead, we could only look at it from afar. Could this day get any worse? Haha!
Our next destination was supposedly Cape Bojeador Lighthouse. However, the people from the store at the entrance of Kapurpurawan told us it was not possible to get there given the weather. We didn’t push it. So, we headed down to Laoag to check in at our hotel.
It was 2:30PM when we arrived at BALAY DA BLAS PENSION HOUSE. By the time we got in our room (Deluxe Suite for P3,100/night inclusive of breakfast for 4), the weather got even worse. The hotel cut off the electricity for hours to prevent possible disturbances from the typhoon. Hayyy Ineng ka. Good thing I was able to take pictures before that happened.
Our suite was too nice for the price and was too big for us 4. We loved it! We all have our own spaces. Them outside with their own beds. My boyfriend and I inside the bedroom.
The funny thing was… They ended up sleeping in our room coz they felt some spiritual things lurking around them. In short, they were scared! Guys, come on. Grow some balls! HAHAHA joke.
This was where we had lunch, dinner, and breakfast. Saramsam Ylocano, the # 1 restaurant in Laoag as per tripadvisor. And you know what? It was just at the second floor of our hotel! Define lucky.
Everything we had so far was good! No wonder they’re number 1! What we ordered: Ylocano Longaniza, Pinakbet with Chicharon, Lauya a Baka, Chicharon Bagnet, Native Chicken Tinola, and Poque Poque Pizza.
This was also where we bought our pasalubongs… Laoag Longganisa, which was wayyy better than Vigan’s, and the oh-so-yummy Bagnet. They were both to die for!
Laoag was all about food, sleep, and horror stories coz we weren’t able to go out and explore the city.
Thankfully, the weather was better the following morning. It was still raining but not as bad as the previous days. We went to La Preciosa Restaurant to buy their famous carrot cake before we moved on to our schedule. I’ve heard good things about it, so it’s not something I’d miss… Guess what? The hype was real!
On the way to Paoay, the rain was on and off. Sometimes it was light. Most of the time it was heavy. Hayyy Ineng. You were unpredictable.
This was the best shot I can get of the Paoay Church.
By then we already knew we wouldn’t see the Paoay Sand Dunes given the situation. We still tried nonetheless to at least have a glimpse of the place. Unfortunately, when we were halfway through, the water on the rice fields were starting to overflow. Anytime soon we’d get stuck there probably drowning in flood if we went on. So yeah, we backed out.
You can watch the video of our Patapat-BanguiMills-SandDunes adventure here.
We headed down to the last leg of our trip: Vigan, Ilocos Sur.
We were checked in at the VIGAN HERITAGE MANSION, which was located at the other end of Calle Crisologo. This time we booked a separate room from our friends (1 Single Double for P2,500/night inclusive of breakfast for 2). We were the only ones checked in that night. It was a bit creepy.
We went outside right away after we’ve settled our things. Calle Crisologo before dusk.
It was about 5:30 PM when we realised we haven’t had lunch yet so we went to the Plaza Area to get snacks. We read from the reviews that their empanada was the best in Vigan.
After eating, we went around to look for spots that were picture-worthy. This was what we got so far: Plaza Burgos all to ourselves.
We went back to Calle Crisologo and spent most of our night there walking and taking lots of pictures. We were really in awe of the beauty of that heritage site! 😍
Right until the very last day we were struggling with the rain. Wait, scratch that. We’re leaving already?
The places we were able to visit before we finally end our journey up north and head home to Manila.
St. Paul Metropolitan Cathedral.Plaza Salcedo.Baluarte.
No, wait… Our story did not end there. On the way home, we got stuck with no food and water in Candon for nearly 4 hours due to floodwaters. It was a complete standstill! Poor little kiddos.
While typhoon Ineng ruined much of our plans, I must say this trip was definitely a fun adventure in and of itself. There were a lot of learning lessons, especially from those near death experiences since day 1. Then again, did we die? 😂
TRAVEL DATE: AUGUST 20-23, 2015