EnjoyPhilippines.com features articles and photos of the top tourist spots in the Philippines, the best travel destination in Asia for adventure, relaxation, sightseeing and leisure. As they say, it is more fun in the Philippines.

 

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Video of Philippine Beaches

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Batanes: A timeless world where culture tames nature

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Photos of Batanes

By Lailany P. Gomez
 
Where the Pacific Ocean unites with the South China Sea is a paradise called Batanes. It is a unique place associated with peculiarity.  The island’s isolation has preserved its enchanting charm. Lying 860 kilometers north of Manila, Batanes is bounded by the Bashi Channel on the north, by the Pacific Ocean on the east, by the South China Sea on the west, and by the Balintang Channel on the south.
 

Puerto Galera Port

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The Department of Tourism (DOT) is working with the Maritime Industry Authority (Marina) and the Puerto Galera local government for the best way to ease boat congestion at the tourist spot.  Tourism Secretary Alberto Lim said that docking of boats anywhere on the beach has become a concern because it disturbs guests and endangers those wading or swimming by the beach.  That is why they are studying what will work best given the local conditions in Puerto Galera. 

Luneta Flower clock

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National Parks Development Committee has restored the giant Luneta Flower Clock at Rizal Park in time for the celebration of the Philippines’ 113th Independence Day.  National Parks Development Committee executive director Juliet Villegas said the flower clock was renovated with the help of the Department of Tourism and Hyundai Asia Resources Inc.
 

Dapitan heritage zone

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Dapitan City in Zamboanga, where Dr. Jose Rizal spent four years in exile before his martyrdom at Bagumbayan, has been declared as the country’s first heritage zone by the National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP).  As heritage zone, the city will be entitled to state funding and other support for the upkeep of its landmarks and heritage sites.
 

Manila, top city destination in Asia

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Manila is the 10th most visited city destination in Asia, according to the new index of Global Destination Cities developed by Mastercard.  The study ranked London as the world’s top city destination, which is expected to receive 20.1 million inbound passengers in 2011, topping Paris' 18.1 million.  Bangkok is expected to welcome the third-highest number of visitors, followed by Singapore and Hong Kong.  Asia-Pacific cities account for eight of the top 20 global destinations.
 

Ilocos rock formation

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Kapurpurawan rock formationOn the highway to Pagudpud from Laoag City, a left detour somewhere in Burgos, Ilocos Norte is a rustic, dirt road that leads to the South China Sea.  On a slope where vehicles cannot pass anymore, tourists get a glimpse of what is about to amaze them.  Most would feel the urge to brave the heat of the sun and carefully hop from one rock to another during low tide towards a hill that seems to get brighter every step of the way.

The adventure is a part of the foot trail to the Kapurpurawan rock formation, a hill of white limestone rocks in Burgos, Ilocos Norte.  Otherwise known as the Ilocos white rock formation, Kapurpurawn captures the fancy of both old and young alike, thanks to its white marble-like rock surface that shines under the sun.

Paoay Church

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Paoay Church in Ilocos NorteA building that looks so old, yet so grand like Paoay Church in Ilocos Norte province easily captures the attention of both foreign and domestic visitors.  It is also helped by the fact that no less than the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization or UNESCO acknowledged Paoay Church as a world heritage site.

Ilocos Norte is famous for its old Baroque churches, most notably Paoay Church in the town of Paoay.  Originally known as the St. Augustine Church in Paoay, foundation of the building was laid in 1694, and it took nearly two centuries before the church took its final form, according to historical accounts.

Pagudpud Beach

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Pagudpud White BeachPagudpud, the northermost coastal town in Ilocos Norte, lies majestically fronting the South China Sea and protected by beautiful green mountains.  Pagudpud is most known for a two-kilometer white beach in Saud, one of the town's barangays.  A row of coconut trees along Saud Beach adds a tropical theme to the already beautiful resort destination that is Pagudpud.

Several resorts are located at the Saud white beach, which attracts both foreign and local tourists.  The fine, white cream sand in Saud beach can be compared to those of popular resort islands such as Boracay, Panglao, and Puerto Galera.  The water, however, is not as calm as in Boracay and can be suddenly deep during high tide.

Ilocos Wind Mills

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Ilocos wind mills in BanguiOriginally designed to only produce clean electricity, the Northwind Bangui Wind Farm, otherwise known as the Ilocos wind mills, has also become a famous tourist attraction on its own in Ilocos Norte province. Some people call them giant electric fans, which are visible from the highway leading to the beach resort of Pagudpud.

With the addition of the Bangui wind mills in Bangui to its growing list of tourist attractions, Ilocos Norte has become a major tourist destination in Luzon, thanks to its white-sand beaches in Pagudpud, the beautiful Baroque churches including the Paoay Church, the hotel complex at Fort Ilocandia, the houses and other facilities owned by the late President Ferdinand Marcos in Batac, the Sand Dunes in Laoag, the Kapurpurawan white rock formation and Cape Bojeador Lighthouse in Burgos.