Our third and last day of tour was spent in South Batan. We had a different set of tour-mates here and Mr. Romy Daroca served as our guide. Kuya Romy greeted us warmly that morning when he fetched us from the lodge. It was a whole day tour and I was excited to see the rest of Batan.
1. Chawa Viewing Deck
Our first destination is the Chawa Viewing Deck. The van made a halt somewhere on the road where we caught ourselves in between the scenic views of lush green hills and the sea; that’s where the viewing deck is.
Upon arriving, a small kubo greeted us.
Walking further, we found ourselves upon a viewing deck overlooking the sea.
And observing further, we saw a stone staircase to down below the cliff, where the waters splashed wildly upon the stones and rocks. Marla and I did not think twice about going down the stairs. It was a beautiful place and we could not just let ourselves miss having the experience of being there.
And yes of course, when we finally got down below… there’s nothing much to say but…
2. Boat Shelter Port
The Mahatao boat shelter port was an instant eye-candy to me. ‘Hala may ganito pala sa Pilipinas’ was what transpired in my head when I first saw it. It was clean and pretty and it looks like something you would see in foreign lands. I’ve read somewhere though that it’s a 130-million project.
Hmmm… yeah, that made me think.
This place serves as a shelter for boats during inclement weather.
3. Mahatao Church
Our next stop is the Mahatao Church. And I only have one word for it. Gorgeous.
Ain’t she beautiful? And the clouds and sky that sunny morning was a lovely backdrop.
4. Tayid Lighthouse
It seemed like our Batanes tour wouldn’t last a day without a visit to a lighthouse. Our next destination was the Tayid lighthouse in Mahatao. And it’s a very pretty one.
The trip to the Tayid lighthouse was a memorable trip for me because this particular visit reminded me so much of my favorite novel, Anne of Green Gables.
The view of course, was amazing.
Well, Batanes doesn’t seem to run out of stunning views anyway. Oh and we had our group picture here! May I introduce you to our wacky tourmates!
5. Racuh a Payaman (Marlboro Country)
Racuh a Payaman is where we headed next, the place they refer to as their ‘Marlboro Country’. Like in Vayang and Chamantad-Tinyan, the rolling hills seemed endless in view. And it was so beautiful, the hills, the shore, the beach, and the sky conspired together to give out an amazingly relaxing effect to the human body (my body at the least).
I loved it there. Also, we had our lunch at the Marlboro Country. Probably one of my most memorable lunch break ever.
6. Alapad Rock Formation
Another famous landmark in Batanes is the Alapad Rock Formation. We lingered there for a couple of minutes for some photo ops. Nearby is the place where the movie Hihintayin Kita sa Langit (the local adaptation of Emily Bronte’s Wuthering Heights) was shot.
7. Honesty Coffee Shop
The Honesty store, of course, is not to be missed in our Batanes tour…
8. House of Dakay
…as well as the House of Dakay. Nanay Estrella, known to be the most photographed in Batanes who lived here, passed away last January. There was a little shrine inside with photos of her.
9. Old Spanish Bridge
After our visit to the House of Dakay, where we also had a little photoshoot session, we headed back to Basco. On our way, we passed by the Old Spanish Bridge. Kuya Romy told us that the bridge was built by the Spaniards a long time ago and until now, it can still be used as a passageway. Kuya Romy said that some vehicles still pass by bridge.
We also passed by the Homoron Blue Lagoon in Mahatao on the way back to Basco but I wasn’t able to capture a decent photo. We remained inside the van while Kuya Romy explained that the lagoon was where the priests were ordained long ago, during the Spanish era.
The water was so aqua blue and it was so beautiful. Parang ang sarap maligo. We saw two other people swimming there. I wished I did swim too. T.T
Before that, we also passed by the Song Song Ruins, a village that was destroyed by a tsunami in the 90s. Kuya Romy told us that everyone in the village was saved during the disaster because of an alert elderly. It was daytime that time when nakita ng isang nakakatanda na umatras ang dagat. Kuya Romy said that lolo must have known na may kapalit ang malawak na pag-atras ng dagat kaya inalerto ni lolo ang buong village. Because of that, the village people went uphill. They were saved from the tsunami when it rushed towards the entire village, destroying their houses and probably their belongings too.
At the present, the destroyed stone houses still stand there with the whole remains of the village being referred to as a ghost town. Kuya Romy found it funny because it can’t be a ghost town since wala naman talagang namatay. And I agree hehe.
Our tiny stop in the Blue Lagoon technically wrapped up our South Batan tour. But that doesn’t mean our Batanes trip was done.
It was far from over. Hehe. Little did I know, I was about to undertake a little biking adventure to the ‘Welcome to Basco‘ sign before sunset. Haha, it was never to be forgotten for me. 😀
Our whole tour was arranged by TravelYoung. You may reach them through +639174106099 and +639153030595 or through their official website or facebook. You may also contact Kuya Ryan Cardona for group tours through +639158034582.
If you’re planning a DIY tour, Kuya Romy Daroca may assist you as guide. You may contact him through +639089272358.
My trip to Batanes left me with scars (metaphorically and literally hehe) and I feel forever grateful to God for this wonderful experience. 🙂