North Bound: Pagudpud

Imaginary conversation between Y and E:
E: Pagud na ako. Ikaw?
Y: Pagud pud.
LOL. Funny only if you know both Tagalog and Cebuano. If you don't get it, don't bother, it's not worth the corny-ness.haha

DAY 3. Sunday, January 22

Pagudpud.  Our third day in Ilocos was spent in the bright and sunny outdoors. I overdosed on sunblock (if there is such thing.haha) By the way, special thanks to my sponsor/dermatologist, Auntie Marissa, who keeps me loaded with sunblock pills for my outdoorsy days. So I took the pills, plus my Beach Hut SPF75 sunblock spray (my new favorite). It's so annoying how a little sun exposure immediately darkens my skin but it takes forever for my skin to go back to normal. Boo.

Anyway, moving on.

We woke up at around 7 on Sunday morning in our Kapuluan Vista Resort dorm room. It was so cold and windy, I'm glad we didn't get an air-con room. There wasn't even a fan in our room and yet, I felt that  I needed a thicker blanket to keep me warm. Because of the weather, we moved sluggishly until finally we were up and about.

We had our complimentary breakfast at the resort. What did we eat? Ilocos Norte longganisa yet again. Our best longganisa meal by far. I love how relaxing it is in Kapuluan. I was almost tempted to just relax there instead of going out to explore Pagudpud. But of course, that's out of the question. :P

kapuluan vista resort breakfast

Bangui Windmills

After that filling meal, we were on our way to our first stop for the day, the famous Bangui Windmills.
We drove for approximately 30 minutes until we finally caught sight of the tip of  a windmill. We got excited as we draw nearer and saw more and more of the beautiful, white structures.

Finally we saw this road sign that said "Bangui Windmills":

bangui windmills signboard

We weren't sure if the arrow was erased by someone on purpose or if it was just vandalized. Our guess was to turn right (despite the arrow sign being covered), so turn right we did. It lead us to some bushy road near a river. We asked some locals if we were on the right track and they made us go back. Our instincts were wrong, hehe. So if you ever plan on going, remember, follow instructions (haha). This sign does not mean turn right. Just go straight ahead. The arrow was erased for a reason.

Anyway, after what felt like forever, we eventually reached the spot. We parked the car and headed to the shore where 20 majestic windmills were lined up. Pretty!

bangui windmills cinemagraph

The Bangui Windmills are located in Bangui, Ilocos Norte, Philippines. The windmills, officially referred to as the NorthWind Bangui Bay Project, were a project by the NorthWind Development Corporation as a practice renewable energy sources and to help reduce the greenhouse gases that cause global warming. The project is the first “Wind Farm” in the Philippines consisting of wind turbines on-shore facing the South China Sea and considered to be the biggest in Southeast Asia. The project sells electricity to the Ilocos Norte Electric Cooperative (INEC) and provides 40% of the power requirements of Ilocos Norte via Transco Laoag. ---WikiPilipinas
These babies are not only beautiful to look at, they actually provide electricity to almost half of Ilocos Norte while saving the earth.  And did I mention that they're HUGE? Us people look like ants.hehe

bangui windmills

While you're there, there's not really much to do except gawk at the windmills, take lots and lots of photos and buy souvenirs.

bangui windmills
bangui windmills

Souvenir shopping was easy because there were so many locals selling cute windmill items like keychains, magnets, desk organizers, etc. We bought some stuff from a lovely Bisaya manang. :) She says her husband is Ilocano and they met in Manila when they were younger. She moved up there with him and she's been selling souvenirs ever since. She told us stories of shows and movies being shot along their shore and that I look like this celebrity daw.hahaha! Also, she was nice enough to give us lots of extra souvenir shells with our names on them. I love!

windmills souvenirs

After souvenir-hoarding, we were ready to move on. But not without one last photo. :)

bangui windmills

Kapurpurawan Rock Formation

Next stop was the Kapurpurawan Rock Formation. Going to Kapurpurawan was a challenge for E's car because the road was dusty and quite rough. From the main road, we drove for about 20 minutes on the rough road before finally arriving at our destination.

After logging our names on the guest book (yes, they have a guest book), we prepared ourselves for a walk under the sweltering heat of the sun.

kapurpurawan rock formation

The Kapurpurawan Rock Formation is a beautiful work of mother nature. This limestone formation is said to have been formed through the natural forces of the wind and the waves. It got its name from the local word "puraw," which means white. It's got a very interesting shape, kind of like Noah's Ark. I wonder how long it took before it started looking like this.

It wasn't a very long walk and you can actually get by wearing slippers/flipflops, although it might be a challenge because the rocks are quite sharp along the way. I'm super glad I brought my ever reliable trek shoes. This is the most useful and most efficient pair of shoes I've ever gotten myself. And they're cheap. Got them from Payless, of course (kids section, but shhhh). It makes walking on uneven ground easier. I really love using them because I'm so clumsy, I trip over almost anything. These shoes make me less prone to accidents.hehe It also helped me climb the white rock with ease. I didn't fall. Yey.

kapurpurawan rock formation

Before going off to the huge white rock, E and I hung out at this cool wave-like rock formation.

kapurpurawan rock formation
kapurpurawan rock formation

Finally, we stood before the "main structure," the highlight of the rock formation. At this point, I almost forgot about the heat because I was too amazed at the view above (the white rock) and the view below (the ocean).  Also, it was windy up there.

Around the rock formation, you'll see a vast area of land and rocks, as well as a grand view of gigantic waves crashing towards the rocky shore.

kapurpurawan rock formation

kapurpurawan rock formation

It took me a while to decide if I should climb up the rock because it seemed steep and the winds were so strong. I wasn't sure if I could actually do it without rolling down the slope.  Also, I wasn't sure if I knew how to get back down.

kapurpurawan rock formation

After a couple of minutes' deliberation, I decided to go up. I mean, how often will I get to visit this place? Sayang if I don't. Good thing there was this other group of Bisaya people up there who helped pull me up. :D

Once up there, I didn't want to stand up. The wind was too strong and I felt that if I did, I was going to fall into the rocks on the other side of the hill. It was scary looking down at the back part of this rock because you'll see the huge rocks and the ocean below. If you fall... you're definitely dead.

E took a couple of pictures of me sitting down beside the rock, until I finally gathered the guts to stand up. 
Going down was scary because of the steepness, but I survived. :)
kapurpurawan rock formation

When I got down, E and I switched places so that I could take photos of him.

kapurpurawan rock formation

Eliel wanted to see if he could move the rock. Apparently, he's just not strong enough.

kapurpurawan rock formation

Remember what I said about going down? It's this steep.

kapurpurawan rock formation

Before leaving Kapurpurawan, we saw this cool rock that reminds me of a magic carpet. Couldn't resist a photo op.

♪ I can show you the world... Shining, shimmering, splendind... Tell me princess, now when did you last let your heart decide? 

kapurpurawan rock formation

By around 3 PM, we left Kapurpurawan to check out the Cape Bojeador Lighthouse.

Cape Bojeador Lighthouse

cape bojeador

Cape Bojeador Lighthouse, also known as Burgos Lighthouse, is a cultural heritage structure in Burgos, Ilocos Norte, that was established during the Spanish Colonial period in the Philippines. It was first lit on March 30, 1892 and is set high on Vigia de Nagparitan Hill overlooking the scenic Cape Bojeador where early galleons used to sail by. After over 100 years, it still functions as a welcoming beacon to the international ships that enter the Philippine Archipelago from the north and guide them safely away from the rocky coast of the town.

It's such a charming structure and I would really love to see it at night. Amazing how something as old as this still stands and still works! And it's beautiful to look at, too.

cape bojeador

We weren't able to go up the tower, but the view from the balcony looks like this.

cape bojeador

After seeing the lighthouse, we realized that it was almost 4 in the afternoon and we were so hungry because we hadn't had lunch yet. We decided to just eat lunch at the resort and then go to mass afterwards.

Back at the resort, we went straight to the restaurant and ordered food. E ordered some pasta in fresh tomato sauce with grilled chicken (Php325), and I got papas burritos (burrito with potatoes, Ilocos longganisa, eggs, cheese and salsa--Php250). We also got our welcome drinks, iced tea.

kapuluan vista resort lunch

Eating at the Kapuluan Restaurant proved to be a good move because the food was soooo good! The servings are huge too. So you can actually share. I got 2 servings of burritos. The mix of the potato and Ilocos longanisa was really yummmmy, and the vegetables are fresh and organic. They grow all their vegetables and herbs in their garden. :) They are actually the first and only restaurant in Pagudpud that serves organic food grown from their very own organic garden.

kapuluan vista resort restaurant

Other interesting facts:
-all meals are made from scratch
-their bread burger buns, tortillas and vegetarian meat are all homemade
-they do not use MSG
-and for dessert lovers, their ice cream, yogurt, butterscotch sauce are all made from scratch (so you can just imagine how heavenly they taste.mmmm)

We wanted to try out their other dishes. So that night, we ate there again.hahaha We ordered some grilled pork but we don't have any photos because we forgot.haha For dessert, we got the banana with butterscotch and ice cream (Php150). I can't remember what it's called because when I started eating it, I forgot everything. It's that good. My photo really doesn't do it any justice. The banana was tender, the ice cream was super creamy and the butterscotch was just perfect. The serving was bitin (not enough!!) and I wanted another serving. :) I just didn't want to spend another Php150. Perhaps on our next visit.

kapuluan vista resort butterscotch banana

After dinner, we just hung out at the restaurant area (the only area with wi-fi, so you know). The owners of the resort asked us how we were. They're so nice, but I was at a loss for words when it happened and I forgot to mention how we loved their food. :(

That was basically how our Ilocos Day 3 went - under the sun the whole day and chilling at the resort at night. Then we went to sleep, excited for the next day. :)

The adventure continues on Day 4 here.