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About Tour / Sightseeing in Batanes

At first glance, Batanes seems like an otherworldly destination, a place that is distinct from the rest of the Philippines and in a way, it is. The northernmost province is all rolling verdant hills and crashing waves, which is why many say that it resembles the grasslands of New Zealand when seen from a picture but in reality, there's so much more to this amazing place.

It has so many attractions. From natural wonders to man-made sights, there's lots to see in Batanes, which is why there are a variety of tours available in this destination that allows you to uncover all the most beautiful sights that this place offers. No matter which part of Batanes you want to explore and discover, there's an available tour that you can take you on a mesmerizing journey across the most amazing spots in this province.

The beauty of Batanes

Batanes is composed of many islets and three main islands: Batan, Sabtang, and Itbayat. Each island has its own diverse selection of attractions which makes your visit to each unique and memorable.

From sightseeing tours where you'll get to savor the most beautiful views and nature sceneries that Batanes has to offer to cultural and historical tours that will teach you more about the past and the culture of the Ivatan people, there's no shortage of experiences and activities here for the diverse range of visitors to one of the most amazing and unique destinations in the Philippines.

Touring Batanes

Batan is one of the most popular places in Batanes among tourists. It is the largest island in the province, which is why its attractions were divided among two tours: the North Batan tour and South Batan tour.

In the North Batan tour, the attractions that are located in Basco, the capital of Batanes, are highlighted. This tour is a perfect match of natural wonders and man-made attractions, which makes it great for tourists who want a mixture of both for their Batanes experience. Take endless photos of the magnificent pastures at the Vayang Rolling Hills as well as the scenic Valugan Boulder Beach with its amazing boulder and pebble-lined shores. You'll also get to see and visit the PAG-ASA Weather Station, and the famous Basco lighthouse. In addition, you'll also drop by Fundacion Pacita. The former home of Ivatan painter Pacita Abad, it now serves as both an art gallery to her works as well as an accommodation. Meanwhile, discover Batanes' history through a trip to the World War II Dipnaysupuan Japanese Secret Tunnels, the pre-hispanic Nakamaya Burial Grounds that give you a glimpse into the culture and beliefs of the ancient Ivatans, and finally, the Mount Carmel Chapel for a religious and architectural experience.

The South Batan tour offers you more scenic views and visits to Batanes' landmarks which will truly complete your trip. One of the most exciting inclusions of this tour is a trip to the Honesty Coffee Shop. This establishment has an amazing concept; with no one to guard the store and accept payments, the owners rely on the customer's honesty and trusts them to pay for whatever they bought. It speaks volumes of how safe and free from crime Batanes is.

This tour also takes you to see historically significant spots in the province. For one, the San Carlos Borromeo Church is deemed as a National Cultural Treasure. Built in the 1800s, it features a Baroque architectural style that is rampant among churches built during the Spanish era. Another Spanish-era landmark in this tour is the Tuhel Bridge, which is still used up to this day.

Being on the typhoon belt, Batanes is known to be prone to weather-related disasters and calamities and some of the spots in the South Batan tour show you the damage they bring to the residents. One of them is the Ruins of Songsong. This barangay was devastated by a tsunami in Batanes during the 1950s. As a result, it turned into a ghost town, with abandoned and destroyed houses that now serve as reminders of that fateful day. Meanwhile, the House of Dakay tells the story of the resilience of the Batanes residents. The oldest surviving stone house in the province, it was built in the 1800s. When an earthquake ravaged the area in the early 1900s, it was the only stone house left standing.

In addition to these historic sites, there are also various natural wonders that are included in the itinerary of the tour. These include Racuh a Payaman. This place features rolling hills which resemble the ad on Marlboro poster, which is why it is also known as the Marlboro Country. It offers an amazing viewpoint to the Batanes coast, making it the perfect spot to take photos of the beach. Speaking of the beach, several beaches are also part of this tour, including Homoron Blue Lagoon and White Beach to name a few.

If you also want to visit the island of Sabtang, there is a tour you must avail as well. Getting to Sabtang from Basco requires a 30-minute rocky boat ride so hold on to your seats for this one. Once you get there, you'll discover the simpler and traditional life of the inhabitants. Through the Chavayan and the Savidug villages, you'll get to see traditional stone houses as well as the peaceful lives of the villagers. Some wear the traditional cogon-covered headgear, which is known as Vakul (for women) and Talugong (for men). In addition, you'll marvel at the view of the grasslands and the rocky coast at the Chamantad-Tinyan Viewpoint and Sabtang Lighthouse.

The best time to visit Batanes

Unlike other destinations that you can visit all-year round, Batanes is dangerous to visit especially during the rainy season. If you don't want the hassle of cancelled flights, it's best to time go there during summer, from the months of March until June, before the rainy season officially kicks in. More often than not, tours get cancelled because of bad weather, so if you want to make the most out of your Batanes adventure, it's best to plan accordingly.