Travel

More of Ilocos Norte

Right after exploring Sarrat we traveled all the way to Paoay for about more or less 30 mins. Sarrat to Paoay is approximately 20.7 km away. So, everybody brain stormed on where to visit, dine and etcetera. Upon arrival in Paoay we visited those places that is far from reach and would allot time for travel so we payed a visit to Malacañang of the North also known as Malacañang ti Amianan, as locals would call it.

A quick info about the place: Malacañang of the North’s total land area is 5-hectare that is situated in Brgy. Suba, Paoay, Ilocos Norte . It is one of the most visited landmark in the province since this has been the official residence and resthouse of the late President Ferdinand Marcos and his family whenever they are in Ilocos. It has been said that this 2-storey house was given by the First Lady, Imelda Marcos, as a gift during his 60th Birthday. Ain’t that classy? Speaking of classy, the place is fine as fudge! It was designed in a Spanish & Old Ilocano Architecture. I’ve got to give this to the Marcos’, they have exquisite taste for interior thus decorated the whole mansion by antique furniture and paintings to eye-lust over. This goes to show how luxurious their life way back then. On the first floor you will find the bedrooms of the Marcos’ children. On a serious note, the mansion was taken away from the Marcos’ and let the government took care of it when the Marcos’ regime ended. Thus, making the place a national attraction/museum for public view.

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Entrance fee is just 30 Php.

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The room of senator Bong Bong Marcos

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The largest room in the first floor has been divided into three parts – the Diplomacy room gallery, National Building Gallery and Agriculture Gallery.

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The Diplomacy Gallery

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The Agriculture Gallery

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Masters Bedroom Bed. Can’t imagine Imelda fitting there though. Haha

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Some of the books of the late President Marcos

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Beautiful first lady, Imelda Marcos.

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I don’t mean to be cheesy and all but this is my favorite part of the room. It holds so much story about Imelda and Ferdinands love and it actually made me believe in forever – well just a little. Did you know that they only dated for 11 days and eventually got married? Talk about fast match eh? Who would’ve guessed that it all started as a whirlwind of emotions turned into a lifetime of companionship? As what the tour guide narrated, The romantic tale between the promising statesman of Ilocos and the statuesque “Rose of Tacloban” is almost legendary. It was a combination of “Love at first sight” and the proverbial saga of star-crossed lovers who surmounted the odds. *char! They were different worlds, of opposite realms, but they found a common ground. Whether behind the camera or public view, Ferdinand and Imelda epitomized what seemed to be the ideal Filipino couple. Awww, isn’t that charming?

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I’m guessing this is the room of Ferdinand and Imelda’s children on the second floor.

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This is the best part of the house! Their balcony. Isn’t it amazing? Wouldn’t mind waking up to this view every morning with a cup of coffee on your left hand and the hands of your lover on the right hand. *corny*

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So, after visiting the Palace we freshened up at a nearby store and sipped fresh coconut juice and immediately hurried back to downtown Paoay to visit the popular  Paoay Church.

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Saint Augustine Church, commonly known as the Paoay Church, is the Roman Catholic church of the municipality of Paoay, Ilocos Norte in the Philippines. It took about two decades to complete the construction of this massive church which started by the Augustinian Friars led by Father Antonio Estavillo in 1694 and completed in 1710.

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The church is composed of coral stone and bricks with 24 enormous buttresses on the both sides and at the back, a prime example of “Earthquake Baroque” design which is the Philippine interpretation of European Baroque adapted to the seismic condition of the country. And because of this Paoay church stood the test of time! It survived wars and typhoons all over the years.

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Albeit, it was damaged during the huge earthquakes of 1865 and 1885 which led to repairs that made the church looked unscathed. Because of its historical and architectural significance, the UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization ) designated as a World Heritage Site in 1993 as one of the four best example of Baroque Churches in the Philippines! As of now, Paoay Church stands proud as it is one of the most visited churches in Ilocos. Kudos Ilocos! That was hefty! So right after checking the place out I wanted to pray inside the church, sad thing is, there was a wedding going on. I don’t to destroy the magic moment of the couple so instead we lighted candles and left eventually for Pagudpud! See you on my next blog post! 🙂

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