On our third day in Batanes, we woke up early and got ready for our Sabtang island tour. Sabtang is an island municipality across Batan and is a 45-minute falowa (banca without outriggers) ride away from the port of Ivana. In 1994, Sabtang has been chosen by the Philippine Department of Tourism as one of the 12 best destinations in the country.
Another couple, Elsie and Mark, whom we met at the airport and also stayed in Batanes Resort, have decided to join us on our trip. Nice. (This means we can save a few bucks on the island tour.) We left the resort at around 6.15 a.m. then took a tricycle and headed to the port of Ivana. As we arrived, we found out that the falowa was ready to leave and was just waiting for us. We hurriedly jumped inside the boat, wore our life vests and headed to Sabtang island.
Basco, also known as Santo Domingo de Basco, is considered to be the capital municipality of Batanes and is located at the northern part of Batan Island, the second largest island among the Batanes Islands . It has the domestic airport which serves flights coming from Manila. Its land consists mainly of rolling hills and mountains.
According to wikipedia, its town got its name after Capitán General José Basco, who led the Philippines to freedom from the control of New Spain (today known as Mexico) and based on the 2000 census, it has a population of 6,717 people in 1,469 households.
As we arrived at Basco Airport, we saw the driver, Kuya Nards, and the receptionist of Batanes Resort, Ate Rose, waiting for us at the arrival lounge holding a placard with Icey’s name on it. As we approached them, they welcomed us and have been very friendly and accommodating to us. They even assisted us on the booths where we should sign and pay for our tourist fees. Batanes Resort is just a few minutes drive from Basco Airport and is a government-owned resort nestled atop a hill which offers a great panoramic view of the South China Sea.
Since this is going to be our first entry for this travel blog, I would like to impart with you the very first trip that Wayne and I had ever shared.
Last September 2008, after so many days of whining and mocking, me and Al finally gave in to Wayne’s request and decided to join her in witnessing the splendid scenic spots that can be found in the northernmost part of the Philippine islands, Batanes.