La Union and side-trips to Vigan & Laoag


La Union and side-trips to Vigan & Laoag

La Union is the next town after Pangasinan.

pangasinan

I often remember as I passed by these towns, that I really never gave it a thought that going further I will realized how equally beautiful the northern part of the country is. I have ventured on the sweet mangoes and puto Calasiao of Pangasinan, had gone barefooted in their beaches, hopped on the hundred islands as a little girl, basked in the sun on a foggy morning in Baguio. I thought that was it. My focus was in the Vismin area. I am so enthralled by Vismin! This brought me to discover that I was somehow misled in a way. Both ends has a lot to offer and as I reached one place after another, my list keeps getting longer and longer.

Going out of the country, which I have set aside first (due to budget constraints) and primarily due to to this itch to set foot first to places in the Philippines (81 provinces) that are still unknown to me (Obsessive/ compulsive). I was even informed of a Santorini inspired resort in La Union (ongoing construction during the time when we visited), a church inside a cave in Tuguegarao, the lighthouse in Capones, the beaches in Baler is also enticing though not a priority and pine trees of Zambales on queue among many others.

I also discovered the advantages of traveling by land, that you can pull-over and stop for a while to take souvenir photos or just enjoy some corners. Drop by some attractive spots here and there, say a prayer on some old churches, check out some stuff from ambulant vendors and those lined up in the street sides. And the best part of which is try some enticing restaurants for the first time when our stomachs are aching for munch time.

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Macho temple…

la 4

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We spotted a park and stopped for a while…
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Lunch time…
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A grotto…
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And another grotto…

After, La Union, since our goal is to comb region 1 and 2 by land. Of course we didn’t dare to skip enjoying the beauty of Vigan.

vigan

and Laoag.

laoag

We fancied the windmills with that innocuous puppy,

dog
Puppy lookin’ straight to the camera! (–,)
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Bangui bay…approaching dusk…

Bangui bay…approaching dusk…

the lighthouse,

lighthouse
I’m so in love! (–,)

Crisologo street,

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The famous street…
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Crisologo street…

and Patapat viaduct.

patapat
Patapat viaduct!

and Pagudpud.

pagudpud
Welcome to Pagudpud… a tale has it that the word originated from an American father and his son, it was the son who said “Pa! Good food!” while they’re sailing and saw some fresh catch…

That one activity you must not miss. Is to try out the famous Vigan longaniza which we can’t get enough of. Longganiza for breakfast,

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Cafe Leona…this restaurant since mostly frequented by tourists, they had to put up tables in front covered with a tent. We were lucky to find our table inside…
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Longganiza at Cafe Leona is a must…

longganiza for lunch and longganiza for dinner. ahaha!

longga
We had dinner (longaniza again) from Macy’s diner..

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macys

tiffany
My pink & purple room at Tiffany Hotel…

Well, we had “bagnet” in one of our dinners for a change. It’s an Ilocano specialty dish made of deep-fried pork belly, with its’ skin so crisp and tasty. Its’ flavor was due to the long process it had been cooked, after marinating the pork belly, it’ll be deep fried twice after letting it cool, refrigerate and deep – fry for the last time. And the empanada too..

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Vigan empanada…

Ilocos was such a gifted place. We haven’t visited the white rocks because as I’ve said before, the road there is a road less traveled unless you have planned it or if you have all the time in the world. Ours is very limited.

By the way the hotels in La Union was a riddle to me. As we hop from one hotel to another for an overnight stay, most of their names are with Bali hai, Aloha nui or some Hawaiian words in it. I found out from one of the staff that a number of Americans from Hawaii have settled for good in La Union finding it irresistible.

bali
Hotel hopping in La Union…
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Witnessed a wedding when we visited one of their old churches…and took advantage to have a picture with this decorated cart…
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From this hill, we had this panoramic view in sync with the soft sound of the wind and leaves dancing in front of us…

Had I not visited La Union, I am still innocent of that story maybe until this very day. It was such a fulfilling discovery. The long hours of travel from region 1 and 2 had been more exciting even if it’s so exhausting. Not only because I captured a rainbow along the way but because of the beautiful sceneries that we encountered and the people we’ve met in each town. I am topping this off with this restaurant that we found serving my all time favorite. A slice of blueberry cheesecake. (–,)

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We spotted La Preciosa and we took our slice of blueberry cheesecake…(–,)

Next stop? Isabela… =)

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beautsantua

-An only daughter. A mother of an 18 year old son. Passionate with so many things. A lover of life itself. First of which is to write. Then, sing (I specifically love the stage), read, cook, travel & take beautiful pictures (photography) and scrap booking, all of which are my own way of coping with life's challenges. Friends usually associate me with the color violet. I love this color so much! Though, I love pink, red, teal, orange, yellow, blue as well! Coffee is my water and my happy food is cheesecake topped w/ blueberries, yogurt, sansrival and cream puff. I mastered fettuccine carbonara because that is one of my favorite food as well, along w/ broccoli, prawns and mushrooms. Secretly, I love "Stitch" - that grinning indigo pup. =) Seriously, I dream to become a philanthropist (starting off by providing shelter to street children in our country) and a famous author someday. I'm just waiting for God's time for my first book to be published.- It took me years to decide to blog, more so to write and have it out in the open. As I used to write even when I was a teenager, and I just keep them on file. It was my outlet. Approaching the year they say where life begins, or If I may say, the sweeter life. It was a year full of emotions. As I lost my father a year before and I guess in one way or another, the unfathomable sadness prompted me to pour them out in my writings and share them to the world, hoping it might lighten the heaviness of my heart. I live now with my son and mother, as a mother and as a daughter (as a friend and a sister), this has made me be ready to finally do what I am meant to do. Even If there's a lot that I wanted to do. This came first, like a first love that occupied a special place in my heart. It's a looong process, tiring, frustrating, exciting. The best part? is the happiness it brings. Even if things around seems all so wrong. It's like having my own place under the sun. My own safe and happy rainbowed world. At times, there's guilt as well, for I strongly believe, writing (like singing) is a talent God has gifted us. We ought to use it and maximize it, in our littlest way, share it to mankind, for His glory. I just had a few distractions over the years and to realize that it is never too late to be who we ought to be, I have this very strong feeling, now is the time. All my life, I have decided on things that made me happy, this is one of those. I may never be a winner of those best blogs that have been awarded to talented writers/ bloggers and I don't mind, there are strikes of being envious, but according to my father, there are two kinds of being envy. There's envy that is so negative, it'll hamper you from doing good and there's an envy that makes you happy for them, or seeing yourself in their shoes, I think, the kind of envy in me, is the latter. Like celebrities who missed an Oscar, while the film was watched by the whole world, she/he did not mind, it's like knowing what counts best, and it's the capacity to share your talents to anyone who wants to receive it, without asking anything in return. Expressing what's in my heart and mind on every occasion (which happens to be daily) and being happy about it is like a prize already. Happy reading!(--,)

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