Batanes

Batanes – New Zealand of the Philippines

Batanes is one of the most beautiful destinations in the Philippines. A trip to get there will provide you with the most unique scenery of the country, which includes wild islands that will surely captivate nature lovers, free-roaming cattle on endless green hills, large cliffs overlooking the ocean under the clear blue sky, reef and white sand beaches, and the rich cultural heritage of Ivatans.

When it comes to Batanes, there are no words to accurately paint its beauty. You have to be there to appreciate it. The beaches, lagoons, caves, and islands will leave you speechless. Beaches that equivalent to the beauty of Boracay, try visiting Chadpidan and Nakabuang Beaches. Just lounge by the shore, have a picnic, grill some fish (try Batanes’ favorite fish: the ‘dibang‘or flying fish), grab some booze and play some music! Or you can explore many other beautiful beaches like Diura Village’s beautiful coastal terrain or Homoron Blue Lagoon in Mahatao. If you want a photo shoot at a unique beach, try Valugan Beach. There are many large rock spread across the coast, captivating lots of photographers and tourists!

In Batanes, you will also admire the traditional stone houses associated with the history of Batanes or enjoy the rolling hills and get your ‘The Sound of Music’ game on. One couldn’t even call it a ‘Batanes’ experience if you won’t take the opportunity of going on a hike. There’s just so many areas to explore! If you can, you find some time to trek Mt. Iraya or you could also find the Basco lighthouse at Naidi Hills.

Or you can visit many of the tourist attractions here: try visiting some of churches and lighthouses as part of your things to do in Batanes. Every municipality has churches of its own as well, in which, San Carlos Borromeo church is considered a cultural symbol.

Besides, you also have the opportunity to experience ‘Top Loading’ and Faluwa. You can admire the picturesque beaches or cliffs with a jeepney or experience the adventure feeling in the sea with faluwa - native Ivatan motorized boat. If you can gather the courage, try to ask the owner of the jeep for permission to go ‘top-loading’.

If you are a seafood lover, you must try ayi (lobster), tatus (coconut crab; yes they have to eat), and dibang (flying fish) and surely you will be surprised when seafood is extremely cheap. And yes, never forget to try vunes (dried gabi) and uved (pork balls with flying fish and banana trunk). For the absolute experience: eat it with your hands and on a vunung leaf.

Batanes is not only beautiful because of natural lanscape and culture but also the people here are very delicate. Villages, cafes, homestays ... everything here is personal while people here - Ivatans, are probably the warmest people you'll meet in your lifetime!

There are still many other things to do in Batanes and a great idea for you to spend some time in this northern paradise. If you’re also aiming to experience some simplicity and tranquility in life, Batanes is sure to bring you back to the basics as it also brings you closer to nature.

The beautiful photos of the famous beaches here will be a great opportunity to show your friends about your trip. To get there, book a flight to Basco - the capital of Batanes province with Philippine airlines.

Pro Tip: Batanes gets more rainfall than other areas of the country. The best times to visit are March – May.

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