Vigan is one of the most interesting cities in the Philippines. It does not only features ancestral houses dated a way back the colonial period but also allows you to experience some bits and pieces of the modern world. Vigan moves through time and it carried everything it has from the past to the contemporary times. Though a city, Vigan emanates a rustic vibe contratry to major urban centers in the country. Ironic, isn’t it?
By the way, Vigan is currently making a name in the list of the New 7 Wonder Cities. It is one of the 21 finalists which fame shall be determined November this year. To be the first to get there among your friends, travel now. The list of things to do below would be very handy.
Journey Through Time at Calle Crisologo
Okay, let us start with the primary attraction. Calle Crisologo is an extant remains of the Spanish times in the country. It does only features ancestral houses but also allow you to experience the atmosphere of the Hispanic community. You can be there when the sun is up for you to scrutinize every architectural details or when the dusk covers the horizon for you to enjoy the picturesque city of lights.
Explore Baluarte and the Butterfly Sanctuary
If you love the animals, you will definitely like it here in Baluarte. Ostriches, ponies, swans, birds, and some reptiles take refuge in this farm. There are also animal shows where you are given a chance to interact with creatures that are rare even in the wild.
Since dinosaurs are extinct, you can only see their static figures.
Also housed inside Baluarte is a breeding ground of the charming yet vulnerable butterflies. Beautiful flowers are also grown within the vicinity of the sanctuary to mimic the natural habitat of these creatures.
Baluarte is a private property but your visit is free.
Have a Glimpse of the Past at Father Burgos Residence
If you are a city boy or gal, you probably don’t have any idea about how the houses are configured in the past. Visiting the Birthplace of Father Burgos, now Father Burgos Museum, will educate you on how our ancestors arrange everything inside their houses. The lower portion of this antique residence houses a gallery of interesting dioramas, photographs of distinguished individuals, and miniature of ships and galleons. Lodged in a separate quarters are ancient Iloco weapons and various tools.
Mold a Masterpiece at Vigan’s Pottery
Don’t have any experience with pottery, ask the masters in Vigan to help you create your very own memorabilia. The prodigies of clay crafts are always willing to teach the willing. They will also allow you to use their tools and raw materials.
When the potter’s wheel starts rolling, make sure you have your hands smoothly shaping.
Reflect with Nature at Hidden Gardens
It is a wide garden inside a small fenced property. Does that confuse you? Allow me to clarify. In a typical property, a house usually occupies the big chunk of land, however, for the hidden garden’s case, it occupies significantly larger portion. This is literally a fenced garden. Nothing really special here. But if you are looking for a good place for your nature photography, this is a good venue.
There is a high concentration of flora here. I just couldn’t tell the actual numbers.
Discover History and Religion at Bantay
San Agustin Parish one of the two great churches in Ilocos Sur. It features a very fascinating brick facade with ivory (color) highlights. Beside the church is a hill where the Bell Tower of Santuario del Nuestra Señora de Caridad stands proud. The view deck of the bell tower offers a panoramic view of the rural side of Vigan and its adjacent town, Bantay.
Spend some Minute of Solemnity at Vigan Cathedral
I couldn’t say much. Just spend some ample time to rethink and reflect. Travel is not all about enjoyment anyway.
Tour Around the City with a Kalesa
To make the most of your stay in the city, rent a Kalesa and experience the 360-degree tour of the city. The kalesa tour also includes your trip to two great museums, different souvenir shops, various city attractions, places to eat, and the entire stretch of Calle Crisologo.
Shop for your Pasalubong
Never forget your friends and your family who follow your travel updates in instagram and Facebook. Bring something unique and something that can be of good use. Forget the key chains and refrigerator magnets please, unless they request them.
Guzzle some Awesome Flavors of the Local Delicacies
They said that one of the unique identifiers of a great culture is the cuisine. Thus, you should not forget the munch punch. In the list are the special empanada, the fabled Vigan longganisa, and the controversial sinanglaw.
If you are now planning to visit Vigan, you can book your accommodation in advance at Agoda.