Saturday, May 28, 2011

Up North: Sunset and Bangui Windmills

Last stop in our first day itinerary was to see Bangui Windmills up close. They are so huge that these were the first attraction we noticed from the highway.

Northwind Bangui Bay Project pursued by Bong Bong Marcos started operating in 2005 which supplies 40-70% of Ilocos' power requirement. The twenty windmills are used to generate power with the use of  air, a renewable/alternative power source --huzzah! an effort to nurture mother earth! :) It provides power without the harmful GFCs which cause global warming.

I actually am impressed by the projects of the Marcoses. Here are some that I am aware of: many of the buildings that we still see in Baguio are projects of Imelda; the BLISS Housing Project in Metro Manila was also pursued by her; birth of CCP; construction of LRT; built known specialized medical hospitals such as the Philippine Heart Center, Lung Center of The Philippines, Kidney Institute of the Philippines; and the list goes on. They, indeed, have done a lot in the arena of tourism and beautification of our country. Well, lay aside the issue of diverting public funds for personal gain surmounting these. 

Anyway, I was amazed that these Bangui windmills are really humongous up-close! Imagine, it's 70 meters in height or as high as a 23-story building and each blade measures 41 meters long!
 Finally!! <3
 Strong waves!!
 There are booths selling souvenirs over there! 
 I bought one windmill ref magnet and one pencil holder (the big one in photo)!
This photo is taken at a souvenir area in Saud (costs so much there)! Thank God I wasn't conviced to buy there. 
The one I got in Bangui is in pink but its design is simpler. :) <3
 I find this photo genuine <3
 That's all! :)
Shall share stories and photos from Day 2 next! :)

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Thursday, May 26, 2011

LAKBAY NORTE: Blue Lagoon and Bantay Abot Cave

I was really looking forward to brace Pagudpud beach! All the more, get soaked up in Blue Lagoon, the Boracay of the North. Which stirred my curiosity, is Boracay the ultimate beach destination?! They seem to compare every beach to Boracay. Say, Potipot is coined Boracay of Zambales. *wonders*

Blue Lagoon is located further North which is why it is no surprise that most prefer to go to Saud instead. It has contrasting blue hues which enticed us to dive urgently despite heat being on its highest degree. It is a little patch of heaven on earth and its water still looks quite pristine!!! :) The vicinity looks a bit spoiled already, though. But we really had a great time, needless to say. <3
BTW, I hope they work on the roads to these tourist destinations! We had to drive through bumpy, rocky road! :S
 Sexy, Mau!! 
 Kinda strong waves <3
 Haha! Gen trying to perfect a beach shot!
I love beach sand! Free natural foot and body scrub! hihi!
 'Lil crab/creature hiding in her shell
 "Yammmi".. quoting Coco Martin. lulz

Before we arrived at Blue Lagoon, we passed by an eye-catching, conspicuous humongous 'formation' with a hole. But since our path is to go on the farthest point first, Bantay-abot Cave had to wait.

Bantay Abot Cave is actually a mountain with a hole. They juxtapose it to that of an external female reproductive organ. They told us that there is actually one penis-shaped mountain or whatever that is as well near it; we didn't see it, though.
   The place is photo op material. Nothing to do much; but the view is really scenic!!
Beach is not recommended for swimming due to its ground of rock multitudes
 There were rock formations surrounding it. We climbed a big rock!!
 Inside the hole <3
View behind the rock 

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

LAKBAY NORTE: Paraiso ni Anton, Agua Grande, Patapat Viaduct, Kabigan Falls, Saud Beach

We went to Ilocos last last weekend. In four days time, we were able to set foot on most places we planned on visiting. I spent almost a day on the road. 7 hours from Pampanga to Candon where I met my friend and her friends. 4 hours from Candon to Laoag where we called it a night (lodging fail, though! Dang those stubborn bed bugs!). Lastly, 2 hours from Laoag to Burgos where we stayed for three days and two nights. Staying at Burgos was strategically planned since our most sought-after spots are situated there.

Parents slightly did repugn on this trip since we already went there. I told them that I badly want to see Kapurpurawan, Kaangrian (which we weren't able to), Tanap Avis (fail!! will talk about this more in a separate entry), and to visit sand dunes and try sand boarding (wasn't able to, as well) this time. But hey, as if they had a choice not to permit me. Haha! It was in 2004 when we conquered Ilocos for crying out loud.

It was early Saturday when we started nailing the itinerary. Locals who accompanied us suggested that we go start from the farthest point to nearest point. It was not the initial plan. We were disappointed by the mishmash, but everything turned out way way better. Thanks to them, we saved a lot of time, money, and effort. So, off we went to the farthest point of Pagudpud via 2 tricycles.
Java Hotel.
They say this hotel gets featured often.

We stopped by at Paraiso ni Anton (Paradise of Anton) first which is about 2 hour ride from Burgos. I thought that we're heading to a beach. I was surprised to see that this paradise they call is just a mini waterfalls which is said to gush out miraculous water. It was the farthest, but was the most boring of all. We just had our picture taken here. There were numerous tourists and even bus load of people getting water from it or simply just speculating as well. 
  But then, LOL.
They say that you have to get water from the top most source.

Next, we had a short stop over at Agua Grande Picnic Park. The water converges from the mountain to the sea. We decided to get our feet soaked only since the water smelled fishy. They charge 20 pesos entrance fee which we did not pay. We just stayed there for few minutes, noh. ;p

Then, we stopped by Patapat Viaduct. This bridge was built to minimize mishaps brought about by landslides that had happened in the past. It is the 4th longest bridge in the Philippines. The body of water beside it is the Pasaleng Bay. We actually saw a mini passage to the bay but we skipped the few walks. We still had a lot to surmount!
 What's good about this trip is that I met new friends!! 
I was willing to go with a friend and a bunch of strangers. ANSAYA! We got along instantaneously!

We hit Blue Lagoon / Maira-ira waves and went to Bantay Abot Cave after. I will just make a separate entry about these two.

Sixth stop in our 1st day involved plunging in ice cold water!! This was the highlight of the trip. It's actually my first time to really enjoy bathing in waterfalls 'coz usually I feel dirty after the experience. But dipping in the ice cold water of Kabigan Falls freshened us all up and our skin were even glowing after. The silver ring of my friend even got sparkly polished.

It's a 1.5 KM trek from the gate / main road which is approximately 30-45 minute walk. Tourists are obliged to hire a tour guide who will lead them to the falls. We paid 200 pesos for the guide. They ask 20 pesos per head upon entrance, but since we were with locals bargaining for us they just asked 50 pesos entrance and preservation fee. We were 12 in the group. ;-p

We passed by streams, farm fields, and so on before we got soaked in Kabigan ~awesome~ falls! The walk was definitely worth it!
Hello! :')
Really cold!!! Water seems murky.
Thumbs up and a heart!! :)

Experience at Kabigan falls was breathtaking and refreshing!!

Second to the last itinerary for day 1 was Saud Beach. It was already late afternoon when we arrived there and we still are heading to Bangui Windmills. So, we didn't donned our swimming attires anymore.

My memory of Pagudpud beach was that its sea water is cold. I enjoyed my dip in 2004. I tried the water again, but it didn't feel the same. 
 Hodgepodge of usual bracelets. Bought a swarovskiesque 'Chinese' charmed bracelet! Went to Saud to buy one, eh. LOLJK. It only costs 80 pesos here. Not bad.
Fishing community

Lastly, we went to Bangui Windmills which I'll blog separately. This post seems long already. ;)
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