Hey there fellow travelers! Have you ever been to Basco, Batanes? If not, you’re missing out on a remarkable adventure that will leave you breathless – literally! Located in the northern part of the Philippines, this group of islands is a real gem that will not disappoint.
Now, you might be wondering, what’s so special about Basco? Well, I’d be pleased to tell you everything there is to know about the tourist spots in Basco. The landscape is undeniably gorgeous unlike anything else you’ll find in the country. The seaside is rocky and dramatic, while the hills and mountains are lush and green. And with the region settled in between two oceans, you will witness some of the most incredible seascapes and sunsets you’ve ever laid your eyes on.
But wait, there’s more! Basco isn’t just about natural beauty – it’s also rich in history and cultural heritage, with many fascinating sites and landmarks waiting to be explored. And the locals? They are the warmest people you will ever meet! The relaxing vibe here is contagious, making it the perfect spot to unwind and experience the unique atmosphere of this fascinating destination.
So, what are you waiting for? It’s time to ditch the daily grind, stuff your suitcase, grab your camera, and set off on an epic adventure that will make you feel like Indiana Jones… or Dora the Explorer, depending on your level of expertise! Who knows, you might even come back with a great tan and a few tales to impress your friends.
What is Basco known for?
The beautiful town of Basco is known as the capital city of Batanes located in the northernmost part of the Philippines. Basco will give you a glimpse of its stunning landscapes, pristine beaches, and amazing topography, making it ideal for any traveler. Basco is also well-known for its rich cultural heritage, with ancient Ivatan houses, traditional customs, and delicious cuisine that will delight your taste buds.
How to get to Basco:
There are several ways to get to Basco, but the most common options are:
By plane: The easiest and most convenient way to get to Basco is by taking a plane from Manila or Clark International Airport to Basco Airport. Philippine Airlines and SkyJet Airlines operate daily flights to Basco. The duration of the flight will be approximately 1 hour and 45 minutes.
By boat: If you prefer to travel by sea, you can take a ferry from Manila to Basco. However, the schedule for these ferries is limited and subject to change due to weather conditions, so it is important to check the schedule in advance. 2GO Travel operates ferries from Manila to Basco, which take approximately 24 hours.
Once you arrive in Basco, you can easily get around by tricycle or bicycle, as the town is relatively small. It is also possible to rent a motorcycle or a car to explore the island.
Famous Tourist Spots in Basco | Things To Do In Basco
Are you ready to unleash your inner explorer and discover the best tourist spots in Basco? Trust me, visiting these places will give you a lifetime of unforgettable memories, and make your Instagram feed look like a travel influencer’s account – unless you forget to charge your phone, get lost, or get chased by a herd of cows, in which case it might be memorable for other reasons. I’ve gathered the list of the best tourist spots in Basco, so you don’t have to!
1. Mount Iraya
If you want an adventure that will get your heart pumping, add Mount Iraya to your list of tourist spots in Basco. This majestic volcano towers 1,009 meters above sea level and offers an exciting hiking experience. The hike to the summit may be challenging, but the stunning panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean and neighboring islands make it all worthwhile. As you make your way up the rugged and steep trail, you’ll encounter unique plants and wildlife, or even make friends with the local bats.
But once you reach the top, that’s when the real reward awaits. Take a moment to catch your breath and take pleasure in the awe-inspiring view. The vast ocean stretches out as far as the eye can see, and the hills of Batanes in the distance are a sight to see. Not only is Mount Iraya an exhilarating – wait, I mean exciting adventure, but it’s also a protected area and an important conservation site, preserving the beauty of the landscape and the wildlife that inhabits it.
Quick tip: If you’re a couch potato like me and want to reserve your energy for more tourist spots in Basco, you can always take a selfie in front of this majestic volcano – and pretend that you hiked it. Thank me later.
2. Vayang Rolling Hills
Are you a fan of sunsets and feathered friends? Vayang Rolling Hills has all of them and should be your next must-visit tourist spots in Basco. If you’re a nature lover looking for stunning panoramic views and a touch of serenity, then this is the place to be.
Vayang Rolling Hills are especially famous for the warm glow of sunset covering the hills. It will make you feel like you’re in a dream as you discover the lush green hills and the endless ocean views. Plus, you won’t need a green screen to snap photos when you have these as your background!
But it’s not just the scenery that’s impressive – Vayang Rolling Hills is also a haven for bird watchers. With a diverse range of feathered friends, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to observe and take photos of these beautiful creatures in their natural habitat. And if you’re lucky enough, you might even spot a rare bird or two and become the next National Geographic photographer – or not, but it’s worth a try! This place is the perfect chance for you to connect with nature and appreciate the surroundings.
3. Valugan Boulder Beach
Looking for a beach that’s not your typical postcard-perfect paradise? Then Valugan Boulder Beach might just be one of your next go-to tourist spots in Basco! With its rugged coastline and large boulder rocks, this beach is a true natural wonder.
The rocks on this beach were formed by the eruption of nearby Mt. Iraya, and they’ve been weathered by the Pacific Ocean waves over time, creating unique shapes and sizes. And the best part? The contrast between the dark rocks and the clear blue-green water makes for an awe-inspiring sight!
But Valugan Boulder Beach isn’t just about the rocks. The beach is also home to superb rock formations, covered in vibrant green moss and seaweed, giving the beach a surreal and almost mystical vibe. And because seaweed is a great source of fiber, you can stay regular while on vacation!
For those who love the sound of crashing waves, Valugan Boulder Beach won’t disappoint. And if you’re in the mood for a relaxing walk along the shore, this beach has got you covered. The sound of the waves crashing and the stunning views make for the perfect escape from the everyday stress at work – or maybe not but it’s worth trying!
4. Dipnaysupuan Japanese Tunnel
If you’re a history enthusiast and looking for an exciting adventure, you have to check out the Dipnaysupuan Japanese Tunnel. This tunnel is not just a typical underground passageway, but a military base and storage facility built by the Japanese during World War II. And guess what? The tunnels also served as a means of communication for Japanese soldiers.
Today, the Dipnaysupuan Japanese Tunnel is one of the sought-after tourist spots in Basco where you can explore its tunnels by taking a guided tour. Just be aware that it’s not for the faint-hearted, as the tunnels are narrow and can be quite challenging to walk through. But don’t worry, you can reach the tunnel by tricycle so you won’t miss out on this unique experience.
Among the tourist spots in Basco, this place is the perfect way to combine your love of history with your fear of confined spaces. And this is also your chance to sneak through the tunnel like a real-life ninja warrior! #WarriorModeOn
5. Basco Lighthouse
Perched atop the scenic Naidi Hills in Basco, Batanes, stands a majestic landmark that is sure to take your breath away – the Basco Lighthouse. Fondly referred to as the Naidi Lighthouse, this towering structure stands at a whopping 66 feet and boasts a striking white cylindrical tower topped with a vibrant red dome-shaped roof.
Beyond its stunning architecture, the Basco Lighthouse is also a symbol of the region’s rich maritime history and the people’s unwavering strength and perseverance in the face of adversity. Built in 2003 as part of the government’s efforts to boost tourism, the lighthouse has become one of the best tourist spots in Basco for sightseeing and photography.
From the top of the lighthouse, visitors are treated to a mesmerizing panoramic view of Basco Bay and the surrounding hills, making it the perfect spot for some Instagram-worthy snaps. But it’s not just a pretty face – the lighthouse also serves as a crucial aid to navigation for ships and boats, equipped with a powerful light that illuminates the sea for up to 20 nautical miles and a foghorn that serves as a warning signal during inclement weather.
Make sure to add the Basco Lighthouse to your itinerary when exploring the captivating tourist spots in Basco, Batanes – it’s an experience you won’t soon forget!
6. Nakabuang Beach in Sabtang Island
Nakabuang Beach is a gem located on the serene western coast of Sabtang Island in Batanes, and it’s also one of the tourist spots in Basco that should definitely be on your travel list. The beach’s natural beauty is breathtaking, from the pristine white sand beach to the turquoise blue waters that stretch as far as the eye can see. One of the most iconic features of the beach is the Nakabuang Arch, a natural rock formation that has become synonymous with the area.
If you’re a water enthusiast, you’ll be thrilled to know that Nakabuang Beach is perfect for swimming and snorkeling. The crystal-clear waters are teeming with colorful marine life and coral reefs waiting to be explored. You can also try your hand at fishing, as the locals do, and catch some of the freshest seafood you’ll ever taste.
Nakabuang Beach isn’t just about beach fun and water activities, though. You can take a stroll through the nearby village of Chavayan to explore the area’s rich cultural heritage. Here you’ll find traditional Ivatan houses, made from stone and thatch, and learn about the unique customs and traditions of the Ivatan people. Nakabuang Beach will truly offer you an unforgettable experience!
7. Chawa View Deck
Chawa View Deck is another must-visit destination among the tourist spots in Basco. It is a place where the views are so breathtaking that you won’t want to leave! Located at the top of a hill, you can reach the view deck by car or on foot, making it accessible to everyone. It’s no surprise that both tourists and locals alike flock to this popular tourist attraction.
From the view deck, you’ll be treated to panoramic views of the town, surrounding hills, and beyond. The stunning sights of Basco Bay, Mount Iraya, Basco Lighthouse and Sto. Domingo Church will leave you speechless. You can relax on the huts and benches provided and soak in the beauty of the scenery around you. And don’t forget to check out the flowering plants and fruit-bearing trees that add to the natural charm of the area.
If you’re feeling adventurous, put on your hiking shoes and explore the various trails and paths leading to the hill’s summit. Take a leisurely stroll and enjoy the fresh air, as you ascend to the top. Once you reach the summit, you’ll be rewarded with an even more breathtaking view of the town and surrounding landscape. Don’t forget your camera – you’ll want to capture these unforgettable moments!
8. Homoron Blue Lagoon
Homoron Blue Lagoon is a hidden gem in Batanes that will leave you breathless! Nestled in the town of Mahatao, this natural pool is a paradise of crystal-clear waters and stunning blue hues. You can dive into the lagoon and discover a world of vibrant coral reefs, tropical fish, and sea urchins. Snorkeling is another must-do activity here.
But that’s not all – Homoron Blue Lagoon is also a cliff diving paradise. Once you climb up the volcanic rocks and jump into the cool waters below, it will be an adrenaline-pumping experience that will make your heart race!
To get to the lagoon, you’ll need to take a short but steep trail that winds through towering coconut trees. The trail provides a welcome shade and a gentle breeze that will cool you down after your swim. As you reach the shoreline, be prepared to be mesmerized by the lagoon’s azure waters and the stunning volcanic rocks that surround it. Homoron Blue Lagoon is certainly one of the famous tourist spots in Basco for any traveler seeking an aquatic paradise.
Why Visit Tourist Spots in Basco?
Basco, the capital town of Batanes, is a group of islands in the northernmost part of the Philippines. It is known for its natural beauty, rich culture, and unique architecture, making it a must-visit destination for tourists. Here are some reasons why you should visit tourist spots in Basco, Batanes:
- Scenic Natural Attractions: Basco is home to some of the most stunning natural attractions in the Philippines. The Valugan Boulder Beach, for instance, is a picturesque stretch of beach that is covered in large boulders of various shapes and sizes. The Basco Lighthouse, situated on top of Naidi Hills, offers panoramic views of the town and the surrounding seascape. The Chawa View Deck provides a breathtaking view of Basco Bay and Mount Iraya, making it a perfect spot for sightseeing and photography. The Nakabuang Beach, with its white sandy shores and turquoise waters, is a perfect spot for swimming and sunbathing. You won’t want to miss the opportunity to visit any of these well-known tourist spots in Basco.
- Rich Culture and Heritage: Basco is also known for its rich culture and heritage. The town’s traditional Ivatan houses, with their thick limestone walls and cogon grass roofs, are a unique architectural marvel that has withstood centuries of strong typhoons and earthquakes. The Sto. Domingo Church, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is an iconic landmark that showcases the town’s Spanish colonial influence. These are other popular tourist spots in Basco you should visit to learn about their culture and heritage.
- Authentic Local Cuisine: Basco is also known for its unique and flavorful local cuisine, which features fresh seafood, root crops, and coconut-based dishes. Visitors can savor the taste of Ivatan cuisine, such as the savory Uved Balls and the sweet Vunong Rice Cake, and enjoy traditional Ivatan meals at local eateries and restaurants.
- Adventure Activities: Tourist spots in Basco are also a perfect destination for adventure-seekers, with various activities such as trekking, hiking, and mountain biking. The town’s scenic trails and rolling hills offer a perfect opportunity for visitors to explore the natural beauty of the islands.
Batanes Travel Requirements
Here are the requirements you will need before visiting the famous tourist spots in Basco, Batanes:
- Vaccination card/certificate (for fully-vaccinated): You need to show proof of your fully vaccinated status, and the Batanes local government unit accepts a valid vaccination card or a vaccination certificate from vaxcert.doh.gov.ph.
- Proof of ineligibility for COVID-19 vaccination (for unvaccinated): Parents or guardians of children below 5 years old need to present the birth certificate of their child to prove ineligibility. Individuals who have medical conditions must provide a medical certificate.
- Tours & Accommodations: Prior reservations are required with any of the DOT-accredited Batanes hotels and resorts, as well as booking with DOT-accredited tour operators. Do-it-yourself tours are not allowed for any tourist spots in Basco. For a more convenient arrival and departure experience, it is advisable to arrange airport transfers in advance.
- Clearance to Tour: Before engaging in any activities in Batanes or visiting any tourist spots in Basco, you must acquire a Clearance to Tour from the Provincial Tourism Office and present this document when visiting tourist destinations in the area. You can get in touch with the Provincial Tourism Office by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or through their mobile number, 09292305934.
What to Bring When Visiting Tourist Spots in Basco
When visiting tourist spots in Basco, Batanes, it’s important to be prepared and bring the following items:
- Sturdy footwear: Many of the tourist spots in Basco involve walking on uneven terrain or climbing stairs, so it’s important to wear comfortable and sturdy footwear to avoid slipping or tripping.
- Sun protection: The sun can be strong in Basco, Batanes, so don’t forget to bring a hat or cap, sunglasses, and a high SPF sunscreen to protect your skin from harmful UV rays.
- Light and comfortable clothing: Basco’s weather is generally cool and breezy, so bring light and comfortable clothing that you can easily layer. Don’t forget to bring a light jacket or sweater for chilly evenings.
- Insect repellent: Mosquitoes and other insects can be common in Basco, so it’s a good idea to bring insect repellent to avoid bug bites.
- Drinking water and snacks: It’s advisable to bring adequate supplies of drinking water and snacks when visiting certain tourist spots in Basco since there may not be any nearby stores or restaurants to purchase refreshments from, ensuring that you stay hydrated and energized during your trip.
- Camera: Tourist spots in Basco, Batanes, are known for their stunning landscapes and picturesque sceneries, so don’t forget to bring a camera to capture your memorable experiences.
- Cash and identification: While credit cards are accepted in some establishments, it’s always a good idea to bring enough cash for small purchases and incidentals. Don’t forget to bring a valid identification card, such as a passport or driver’s license.
- Binoculars: Some tourist spots in Basco offer scenic views of the surrounding area, and binoculars can help you appreciate the beauty of the landscape even more.
By being prepared and bringing these essential items, you can ensure a comfortable and enjoyable visit to the tourist spots in Basco, Batanes.