Basco Sights and Landmarks Guide, Philippines
If Marlboro Country was just what you thought to be a favorite cigarette among men or perhaps a golf course somewhere in North Carolina, you’d be surprised to learn that the name rings the bell in Batanes.
The moment you arrive at Basco Airport, your excitement heightens while seeing a beautiful array of highlands. These are on par with those in Ireland, Australia, Scotland and even New Zealand. Truly, the pastures are amazingly beyond your imagination, especially if you go to The Payaman or Marlboro Country. It gives you a mind-blowing panorama of farm fields, Mahatao Lighthouse, Mt. Iraya and the Pacific Ocean. Most interestingly, the site resembles that of the commercial of Marlboro cigarette.
A good view can be seized at the Mahatao View Deck where you can have yourself photographed sitting on any of its benches. Your next series of stopovers are of historical and cultural significance. You’ll see the first church in Mahatao called San Carlos Borromeo Church as well as the oldest and smallest Basco Lighthouse close to it. The church is acclaimed to be one of the National Cultural Treasures by National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA). Some meters ahead are the House of Dakay in Ivana and San Jose de Ivana Church built in the 19th century by Dominican priests.
You might want to get yourself an instant coffee from Honest Café and get ready to catch sight of Ghost Town or The Ruins of Songsong and the abandoned US Coast Guard Station. To take a comprehensive tour, a day or two wouldn’t be enough. Perhaps, you can end your Day 1 by getting to the Radar Tukon Weather Station on the hill that offers you a 360-degree view of the entire Batanes Island. Tukon Church is nearby to amaze you with life-size paintings of saints on the ceilings.
In another day, you can take an early hop to Sabtang Island by taking the Falowa boat ride. It’s a unique experience to be actually sailing in the middle of the Pacific Ocean and South China Sea. After a 30-minute ride, you’ll see the lighthouse. That’s your cue for another worthwhile visit starting off with residences that are made of lime stones. As you travel to the Savidug Church, you’ll notice a mountain that resembles a woman asleep. As the Ivatans may say, “Sleeping Beauty is waiting for her prince to awaken her.” You might want to take unlimited shots at the Chamantad-Tinyan Sitio Views, Rolling Hills or Valugan Bay.
If your time isn’t that limited, you can also swing by Chavayan town to witness how Ivatans make women’s headgears called vakuls.
Purity of pastures and originality of historical landmarks will indeed wow you endlessly. If you’re planning on a trip to Basco, make it a weeklong to grasp ultimate adventure!
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