What a spectacular landscape! The Ilocos Norte Sand Dunes is just out of this world, well, as far as the Philippines is concerned. A different kind of scenery that I was at a loss for words to describe it.
Last January 2010, I was invited by the North Philippines Visitors Bureau to join a media tour of travel writers and bloggers to experience North Luzon for seven days starting in Cagayan province all the way to Pampanga to sample the various local cuisines and experience the attractions offered by the various provinces along the route. Ilocos Norte is just more than churches, gigantic wind turbines, longanisa and empanada. Other than the rugged mountains and beautiful beaches, a desert like landscape at its western coastline awaits the traveler who is bold enough to go to this out of the way geologic wonder. Once you get face to face with the Ilocos Norte Sand Dunes as it unfolds before you, just prepare to be bowled over.
One should go there early in the morning. Nay, better at dawn, just before the sun rises over the mountains of the Cordillera at the east. Soft, beautiful light wraps the sand dunes and just be amazed as how the place is transformed from purple to golden in just a few minutes. Darkness retreating to give way to light.
The Ilocos Norte Sand Dunes is unique in the country and stretches from the municipality of Currimao in the north and winds it’s way to La Paz, Laoag City, then to Suba, Paoay and finally in Pasuquin in the south with a total of 52 square miles.
Suba has the most extensive and continuous stretch and it was where we gazed at this National Geological Monument declared in 1993. It’s also the site of a new adventure sport in the country that gives an unusual kind of high (next post)
And lastly, nope, Nora Aunor wasn’t there this time with her reverberating walang himala lines in Ishmael Bernal’s Himala movie.