The Sophomore Slump

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VIGAN (part deux)

Authentic, it’s the perfect word to describe Vigan. It’s almost automatic to call as such for what it sets out to be. But not so fast, if or when you get there, you’ll be amazed on how Vigan stretches that perfect description.

Evidences of the colonial times still exist and modernism hasn’t spread all over the place. Calle Crisologo is the main attraction. It’s a famous cobblestone street lined with antique and souvenir shops where people can walk through history with the old and in disrepair houses. Boarding on a carriage, as one of the many stops, me and my girlfriend, Edith, toured Former Philippine President Elpidio Quirino’s old Syquia mansion.

Vigan is genuine and true to its root. One major influence from the Spanish colonization is Catholicism. Certainly committed in keeping history and traditions, Vigan lives up to that area of expectation as well.

Our last stop was St. Augustine’s Cathedral. The views here are not only incredible from the outside but also from the inside looking out. We climbed atop the belfry and got rewarded with the bird’s eye view of the town.

Pottery industry still runs as good business. You can ask the carriage driver to make a quick stop to a pottery market. Maybe you can buy one like I did. Livelihood in Vigan sure is basic. You don’t have to physical see the authenticity of Vigan, you can just feel it from the atmosphere and from people. Life is simple there, and it’s highly visible. The garden part of the tour was an off-set for anything Vigan, but a pleasant stop nonetheless.

Authenticity is written all over Vigan’s restaurant’s menus, its antique looks and their bucolic way of living. Vigan and the rest of Ilocos region has their own culinary style and tastes. They pride for their distinctive quality of food. Vigan’s one of a kind empanda is my most craved food of all my travels. See my post here. Also, don’t miss going to Baluarte where the zoo offers plenty of animal interactions unlike others. Vigan remains pure and unerring. The Baluarte Zoo is not abused and rules are highly respected by its visitors.

Plaza Burgos

Tourism certainly has not been swayed and exploited by too much commercialism. It is untouched by corporate world, not congested with big companies and no big cheese walking around. I hope that, like their ancient houses, everything stays as it is. It’d be nice to know for Vigan to remain… with valued, and appreciated well-kept authenticity.

– A fellow blogger, who I met before, recommended Grandpa’s Inn. We certainly enjoyed our accomodation. –

This post is part of Flashback Friday.


Here’s to a very memorable blog post I know. Also a flashback post, Photo Flashback, this time last year, Kate presented these remarkably fine portraits of a Brazilian family she visited living simply and peacefully in a rural location. Kate Anthony Photography may not blog as much as everyone else. But when she does, rest assured that her blog posts and her impressive images are done with sheer brilliance and excellence.

Last Calls…



  1. Sunshine says:

    A lovely tour with you and your loved one…thank you for sharing Vigan as it is always great to learn about new places.πŸ™‚

  2. Lucid Gypsy says:

    Ahh that’s such a lovely photo of you with EdithπŸ™‚

  3. Silving says:

    Tgis place lok really cosyπŸ™‚

  4. leandra says:

    great shots! i’m from region 1 but havent been anywhere Ilocos, your post reminds me to alot a few days for it in my IT this december, thanks!πŸ™‚

  5. LuAnn says:

    You and Madhu are the consummate tour guides and keep me adding to my bucket list. With your stunning photos and heartfelt description of Vigan, who wouldn’t want to visit? Lovely post Rommel and still lovelier photo of you and Edith.πŸ™‚

  6. Madhu says:

    Vigan sounds like just the kind of unspoilt destination we love! And that photo of you and Edith is truly beautifulπŸ™‚

  7. premdev says:

    never been to, a nice place to explore… on my bucket list if ever I get to visit.πŸ™‚ great photos btw.

  8. Kate Anthony says:

    Thank you so much for mentioning my blog- I’m SO flattered at your kind words! Beautiful pictures on your behalf as well! Keep up the good work!

    • rommel says:

      That post is so memorable. It is embedded in my brain. Sometimes, it hunts me on my sleeps. I even once almost get into a car crash thinking of it. Hehehehe Well-deserved. You can really tell true photographers from posers like me. Hehe

  9. Amy says:

    You and Edith toured Former Philippine President, Wow! It’s wonderful to see how people keep the authenticity. Edith is so beautiful. Thank you for sharing the precious picture, Rommel!

  10. eof737 says:

    What a beautiful place… So much to see, so little time.πŸ˜‰
    Thank you for checking in during the Hurricane… your kind wishes were appreciated!

  11. Angelia Sims says:

    There is a wonderful vibe to this place that really comes through your photos. It reminds me of a little village I was whisked off to in Puerto Vallarta. I rode on a stool in the rusted out remains of a clunker. No one spoke ANY English and I was the only blonde I think most of them had ever seen. It was awesome. Great photo of you too. Very dramatic. I like.πŸ™‚

  12. I never thought of climbing that belfry! lol. now, I regret that. What a lovely couple you make! A very nice way to end the post. =>

  13. What a lovely photo of you and Edith! And what a great city. The churches are so beautiful and with such a great history and past. I really enjoy seeing this beautiful city through your eyes!

  14. anna says:

    Oh, I love Vigan! I can taste the empanada, the bagnet and the longganisa right now just looking at your pictures. This post brings back lovely memories as well…

  15. stephglaser says:

    Rommel, this is such an interesting post β€” the first photo is especially striking. As you pointed out, the Spanish influence is quite strong in Vigan. I’ve never visited the Philippines, but I’ve always been curious about the country. Definitely, I’ll live vicariously through your blog and photos! Thanks for sharing and thanks for stopping by and following Travel Oops! Steph

  16. tchistorygal says:

    I love your post. I’ve never been to the Philippines, but have a friend who visited there, and came back with his beautiful wife. They now have two small children. You pictures are wonderful. The red and white building that you took from inside is stunning. The colors, the framing, Fab. You and Edith are adorable, too. Perfect place for a romantic picture. πŸ™‚

  17. milaiski says:

    Ilocos always seem so rustic in pictures. Too bad I didn’t push through with my trip this year. Hopefully, I get to see what you have also seen next year.πŸ˜€

  18. wow these photos are wonderful. I really want to travel more internationally. Thanks for sharing! I’m digging the new blog layout btw.

    • rommel says:

      I really want to travel more internationally, too.πŸ˜€ Your layout is impressive too. Seriously, it urged me to try it on my blog. Just not for me. But it is very neat.

  19. Joycelyn says:

    Nice entry Rommel! and what lovely day with your special one!πŸ™‚ Will visit Vigan early next yearπŸ™‚

  20. libertatemamo says:

    Gorgeous tour!! And really love the shot of the two of you at the bottom…great capture!

  21. Aian Ramos says:

    As always, great photo series, the first one is my favorite though, hehe! I’m really drawn to black & white shots. I’ve always wanted to see Vigan, now I just can’t wait.πŸ™‚

  22. lynlypiochy says:

    How did tou manage to place the 3 photos side by side without ruining their arrangement?

  23. fgassette says:

    Wonderful selections of photos.


  24. RDoug says:

    Your photography certainly make me want to visit the Philippines β€” and that’s the mark of a good photographer.

  25. Sony Fugaban says:

    There’s really no place like home. Bro, your new site is really a charm; it really makes the pictures vivid and that makes the viewer appreciate them all the more.

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