It was one of those dreams made into reality moment when we finally stepped into the land of the Marcoses. It was already 2 am when we arrived at Laoag City, the capital of Ilocos Norte after being on board the Florida bus for 12 hours. Phew! that was the longest trip we had so far! With no clue as to where our hotel is located ( last minute booking through agoda), we just let the tricycle driver take us to Farmside Hotel, which later that day we discovered was a bit far from the city center. With tired bodies but with still active minds, we called it a day and was too excited for the next day ahead!
GETTING TO ILOCOS NORTE
By Air. Cebu Pacific and Philippine Airlines flies from Manila to Laoag daily.
By Land. Several buses cater the Manila-Laoag-Manila route. Partas Trans, Farinas, RCJ Trans, GV Florida, Maria de Leon and Autobus are among the few. We chose the Florida since it was nearest to where we stayed. Their terminal is located in Earnshaw Street, Sampaloc, Metro Manila. Fare ranges from 600- 1000 php. Sleeper buses are highly recommended since they are fast and comfortable. Since it was Christmas season when we decided to go to Ilocos, most schedules were full. We had no option but to take the regular bus at 1:30 pm. It is best that you book your trip 2-3 days before to avoid the hassle of haggling your schedule- we wasted a day of travel since we were not able to book ahead. Contact 02 781 5894
GV FLORIDA BUS SCHEDULE TO ILOCOS
|11:30PM LAOAG CITY Via Paoay (Regular)|
|12:30PM LAOAG CITY (Regular)|
|1:30PM PINILI – Laoag City (Regular)|
|3:00PM JUNCTION LUNA – Laoag|
|4:00PM JUNCTION LUNA – Laoag|
|5:00PM JUNCTION LUNA – Laoag|
|5:30PM SOLSONA – DINGRAS – LAOAG Via Paoay|
|6:00PM JUNCTION LUNA – Laoag (Deluxe)|
|6:30PM BACARRA – VINTAR Via Paoay (Regular)|
|7:00PM PAGUDPUD – Laoag (Regular)|
|7:30PM NUEVA ERA – BANNA – LAOAG via Paoay (Deluxe)|
|8:00PM JUNCTION LUNA – Laoag (Deluxe)|
|8:15PM LAOAG CITY (Super Deluxe)|
|8:30PM SARRAT – PIDDIG – LAOAG Via Paoay (Deluxe)|
|9:00PM LAOAG CITY (Deluxe)|
|9:15PM LAOAG CITY (SUPER DELUXE)|
|9:30PM PAGUDPUD – Laoag (Deluxe)|
|10:15PM LAOAG CITY (Sleeper Bus)|
|10:30PM PASUQUIN – Laoag (Deluxe)|
|11:00PM LAOAG CITY (Deluxe)|
Our last minute booking in Agoda led us to this hotel. located in Brgy. Raraburan, Laoag City, this hotel is a bit far from the city center yet only a walking distance to Robinsons Laoag. We loved the seclusion of the place.Rooms are spacious and decent, with hot and cold shower for a very reasonable price. Contact details: 0928 719 2473 / 077 670 6619 / 077 781 3152.
Robinsons in Laoag.
If you prefer to stay in Farmside Hotel, Robinsons can be your safety net in Laoag.
Outside Robinsons are food stalls, some restos and McDonalds.
ILOCOS TRAVEL ITINERARY
2am- arrive at Laoag City; checked in at Farmside Hotel
7 am- woke up; breakfast at McDonalds near Robinsons(walking distance)
8 am- started looking for tricycles that would take us to the north and south attractions; found Kuya Rico
9 am- started with the city tour and the south attractions (Sinking Bell Tower, Ilocos Museum, Malacanang of the North, Paoay Church)
12 noon- lunch at the food stalls in Batac (near Marcos Museum)
1:00- continued with the tour (Marcos Museum and Mausoleum, Paoay Sand Dunes)
4 pm- went back to hotel
6 pm- freshened up; went to Robinsons
7 pm- dinner at the food stalls outside Robinsons
8 am- checked out from hotel; started with the north tour
10 am- arrived at the Cape Bojeador Lighthouse (first stop for the north tour) then to Kapurpurawan Rock Formation and Bangui Windmils
12:30 pm- kuya Rico took us to a carenderia in Bangui for lunch
1:30 pm- continued with our tour to Patapat Viaduct and Pagudpud.
4:00 pm went back to Laoag City to catch the bus for Vigan
6:00 pm- arrived in Laoag City Terminal
6: 30 pm- took the bus for Vigan
8:30 pm- arrived in Vigan; searched for a hotel to stay
9:30 pm- finally found a hotel (Green R Hotel)
10:30 pm- very late dinner at Cafe Uno then walking and picture taking at Calle Crisologo
9 am- breakfast at Jollibee then spent the whole day exploring the heritage city of Vigan
12 noon- lunch of the famous Vigan empanada at the empanadahan stand at the plaza
3 pm- went to Baluarte
5 pm- back to the heritage village, bought some pasalubong
7 pm- dinner at Mang Inasal; watched the dancing lights at the plaza
10 pm- rode the bus Florida bus to Manila
5 am: arrived in Manila