Exploring Batanes

You know that feeling you get when you get too excited about something and you feel vomiting? That's what I felt when I was the airport waiting for my flight to Batanes. This place has been on top of my "places to visit in the Philippines" list. I can't believe that I can finally cross that out. 

I slept through the whole flight. Luckily (and thankfully) I got startled when the captain announced that we were preparing for landing. Obviously, the first thing I did was look out my plane window. The only thing running through my mind was "Holy crap I'm here!" Batanes looked amazing from above which got me even more excited to explore this place.

This is going to be a very long post (probably my longest post yet!) so I hope you guys like the photos!

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Mt. Carmel Chapel

Mt. Carmel Chapel

This chapel is beautiful. It's just sad that during our visit, it was being renovated. 

This chapel is beautiful. It's just sad that during our visit, it was being renovated. 

Usual sights when driving around Batanes

Usual sights when driving around Batanes

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A device used to measure how hot sunlight is!

A device used to measure how hot sunlight is!

This is one of many tunnels built by the Japanese during the war. First time to actually go inside a cave. It's amazing how deep these tunnels go.

This is one of many tunnels built by the Japanese during the war. First time to actually go inside a cave. It's amazing how deep these tunnels go.

Waves from Boulder Beach

Waves from Boulder Beach

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Of course, this was my favorite part of my first day! Spaghetti (Filipino style) and Halo-halo!

Of course, this was my favorite part of my first day! Spaghetti (Filipino style) and Halo-halo!

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Vayang Rolling Hills. One of the many beautiful sights in Batanes

Vayang Rolling Hills. One of the many beautiful sights in Batanes

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Lighthouse at night

Lighthouse at night

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Woke up early on our second day to ride the ferry to Sabtang Island. The boat usually leaves at 7 in the morning and goes back around 12-1 PM. (If you plan on visiting Sabtang, make sure not to miss the ferry going back because the next one will be on the next day)

Believe it or not, the arch you see there was naturally formed! Amazing right?

Believe it or not, the arch you see there was naturally formed! Amazing right?

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The houses in Batanes are usually made of stone because typhoons would normally pass this island so they had to build something sturdy to withstand the typhoons

Oldest Bahay na Bato in Batanes -- Almost 100 years I think!

Oldest Bahay na Bato in Batanes -- Almost 100 years I think!

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Above: We passed by a house that was open so we took a peek inside. This is the kitchen area of the Bahay na Bato. Trivia: The Bahay na Bato houses usually are big because the living area (where the bed, living room are) is separated from the kitchen. The story behind it is so that when something catches fire, the whole house won't burn down and it will be easy to contain the fire. And also, for hygienic purposes, the toilet is very far from the house.

Below: If by chance you get left behind by the ferry in Sabtang island or you just want to experience what's it like to sleep in a Bahay na Bato, there are a few places in the area like this one that you can rent for a night.

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So nice to see that in the middle of their small town is a mini library where children can borrow and read books.

Our boat driver uses his foot to steer the boat. Pro.

Our boat driver uses his foot to steer the boat. Pro.

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Flights to Batanes are usually only in the morning because of their erratic weather. I was told that it was easier to determine the weather in the morning than in the afternoon. So usually the airport is already closed in the afternoon and the runway is open to the people if ever they want to bike around of jog. It might not look it but the runway of the airport is actually uphill.

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One of the many lighthouses in Batanes

One of the many lighthouses in Batanes

We got to meet a shaman of one of the fishing villages in Batanes. 

We got to meet a shaman of one of the fishing villages in Batanes. 

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This is the church where they held the first catholic mass in Batanes

This is the church where they held the first catholic mass in Batanes

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We saw this man from afar fishing. What he does is every time a wave comes in, he would throw his net to catch fish that ride the wave. We were lucky that we ran into him on the road after taking these photos. He showed us what he got and told us that he was planning to make Kilawin.

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The people in Batanes usually ride bikes or motorcycles to get around the place. You would rarely see cars here.

The people in Batanes usually ride bikes or motorcycles to get around the place. You would rarely see cars here.

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A visit to Batanes wouldn't be complete without visiting the Honesty Store. This store has no shop keepers. What you do is if you want something, you get it and drop your payment in the bin. You would also have to log your purchases on the notebooks on the table.

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Looking back at the photos, I still can't believe that I finally got to visit the place and see everything with my own eyes. I don't think my photos did justice to the place. Everything about this place is amazing. The food, the sights and the people were all amazing and I'm so glad that I finally got to visit this place.

 

To whoever reached the end of this post, I highly recommend that you plan a trip to this beautiful place ASAP. (also thank you for your patience in reading the whole post!)