Bantay Bell Tower + Baluarte

An alarm from my phone at 3 am in the morning signaled our last day in Ilocos Norte. We woke up extra early for our 5 am call time, p...

An alarm from my phone at 3 am in the morning signaled our last day in Ilocos Norte. We woke up extra early for our 5 am call time, packed our bags and prepared for a long road travel ahead.

I said my bittersweet goodbye as I turned my back to our room and headed downstairs.

Moments later, we were driving in the highway of Saud for the last time. Before heading to our first destination, we decided to drop by Jollibee for breakfast because apparently, after 2 days of nonstop local foods, everyone missed fast food (also, because local restos are expensive for our lives and our pockets were almost empty).

Our last day were spent buying pasalubongs and exploring the other side of Ilocos — Ilocos Sur. 

First stop was the Bantay Bell Tower which sits on a hill and has an impressive view of Vigan from the highest point of it that can be climbed. It is also famous to local tourists because scenes of the well-known Filipino film Panday were shot within and around the tower. It is also said that the hole in the huge old bell at the end of the tower was made by the sword of Panday. 

After a few meters’ walk from the bell tower, visitors can enter the St. Augustine Church which was built in 1590 and can buy a few local snacks and pasalubongs in front of it. 

Right after visiting the Bantay Bell Tower, our group went to Baluarte where Chavit Singson’s private collection of animals — both alive and killed — is heartlessly displayed. That was the first time that I visited a zoo and ended up depressed after.

Baluarte 1

Baluarte 2

Baluarte 3

Baluarte 4
BALUARTE SAFARI MUSEUM - This is where the captured and killed animals by Chavit Singson are displayed. It was depressing because aside from the displays being the actual animals, he also exhibited pictures of him proudly smiling with the animals he just killed.

Baluarte 5

We didn’t stay long because of the scorching heat and decided to just wait for the others inside our van. I developed the habit of pointing the aircon directly at me every time we went in after a long exposure to the sun without thinking that I might end up suffering later. In Vigan, the feeling of sickness began. (More of this on the last blog from our Ilocos trip!)

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