Sunday, December 31, 2017

Postcards from South Batan

Batanes - a breathtaking blue and green wonderland. A place that lets you believe that postcards are real. Let's start 2018 with a #travelinspo ayt? If you've never been to this place, I highly recommend it for your 2018 #travelgoals. 

Funny, I almost never made this trip if not for my brother barging in my room at 4AM to get something leaving me with just enough time to gather my things and book an Uber for a 6AM flight. Yay! It's probably my first flight without uhmm shower but thankfully, the tour at 9AM gave me enough time to prepare after the 1h-hr flight. The first day started with a tour of South Batan, the most inhabited island of Batanes. Here goes...

Chawa View Deck. On the way out of Basco the capital, the first stopover of South Batan tour is this lookout of the West Philippine Sea. From here you can take 100 steps down so you can the adjacent cliff to enjoy the rocky coast below. If I could go back to Batanes again (please, please!), I would schedule a visit here during sunset. 

Mahatao Shelter Port. Studying the pictures before the trip, it seemed to me like an ordinary boring port for boat docking (lol, sorry!) but when I got there, I was quite stunned of its appeal in person. It's basically an infrastructure for supporting the fishing industry and safeguarding the marine resources of Batanes and yep, a must-see! ;)

Hedgerows. This wasn't actually part of the tour but I just had to ask my tour guide to stop for a photo-op on the way to the next stopover. What a labyrinth!

Tayid Lighthouse. This modern 21st century structure was built on the opposite side of Batan island facing the Pacific Ocean. There's just something so charming about lighthouses with their red and white painting and the view they offer, no? This sentinel is not available for climbing though but the other one is - Basco Lighthouse in my next post. :)

Mount Iraya. Standing at 1,009m, this active volcano's presence is imposing (it's the first sight that greets you at the airport) and is considered one very important landmark for the Ivatans.

Marlboro Country (Racuh A Payaman). The name was given by the American tourists but it didn't strike me as landscape for a cigarette advertisement (ugh!). Seriously, they should change this name. The very thought of associating its fresh air to smoke, it's repulsive. 😤 

This is actually where the set lunch is served for the tour and later that day, I was informed that this is where the Anne Curtis "supposedly" chose to get married (which we know we didn't happen). But from the actual location in Wellington, I could surmise that this was an option. Up until that time I traveled, mobile data (of any network!) is not available in Batanes. I know, I can't believe I survived two days either, haha! But if I wanted solemn without mobile interruptions, I'd totally do it here and in colder months. (Groom, please? Haha!)

I traveled solo on this trip and since I didn't wanna join a big crowd, I opted to get Kuya Dale's (+639176197009) tour service. He does it in this unique trike with the cogon-roof style that's imported from Sabtang island (see post here). It maybe not so skin-friendly (slather on sunscreen) but I love that it's very stylish and that he took all these amazing photos. :)

Top: Zaful; Skirt: Zara; Shoes: H&M

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