Places to See

BATAN ISLAND
The second largest island in the province of Batanes, this is  where the capital town Basco is situated along with three other municipalities.  The entire island is blessed with natural the rolling hills of Na-idi and Payaman, the majestic Mt. Iraya, beautiful beaches, old Spanish churches, buildings, fortresses and pre-Hispanic settlements.

BASCO
Seat of Government and center of economic development and gateway to the rest of the province.

STO. DOMINGO CATHEDRAL
The first (Spanish) Catholic Church ever built in Batanes in the early parts of 18th century. The roofing was originally cogon grass. The first church to have G.I. roofing in the early 1890’s.

CHANPAN, VALUGAN or the VALUGAN BOULDER BEACH
From this side of the island, one has a spectacular view of the Pacific Ocean. The smooth stone spewed by nearby Mount Iraya in AD 400 is found here.  It is also right along the beach where the thriving cultural practice called Kapayvanuvanwa is performed before the yearly start of fishing season.

NAIDI HILLS
It is an old Sitio derived from the Ivatan word called “Na” which means past and “Idi” meaning settlement or community.  Best spot to take a Basco sunset photo. Site of the American period wireless telegraph facilities that connected Batanes with central government until its collapse from a Japanese Imperial Army bomb attack at the start of World War II.  It is also here where the first lighthouse of Batanes was built.

VAYANG
This is heaven on earth. Spectacular view of the South China Sea and the Western part of Basco. Can see Itbayat and other islet north of Batan. One the most beautiful spots in Basco.

NAKAMAYA
Site of the boat-shaped burial markers of ancient Ivatans. They can only be found in Batanes and are thought to be similar with the sites in Europe where Viking kings once dominated. Area of high biodiversity.

TUKUN
Location of the country’s northernmost PAGASA station, reason why Batanes is frequently associated with typhoons because Basco station is usually used as a reference point.  It has a spectacular view of Mount Iraya and Basco town with a commanding view of Batan hedgerows.  It is the home of endemic flora & fauna. One can view 360° of Batan Island in Tukun.

DIPNAYSUPUAN JAPANESE TUNNEL
Site of an elaborate Japanese-constructed World War II tunnel around three kilometers from town center.

MT. IRAYA
About 1,900 feet above sea level, it is the second highest peak in Batan island. The mountain houses the spring water from where the main town sources its drinking water.

Good for mountain climbers. Home of the Batanes pit viper,  an arboreal snake found only in Batanes, just one of the abundant endemic flora & fauna species in the island.

Basco Airport is located at foot of Mt. Iraya.

CASA REAL
Site where the Provincial Capitol Building now stands. Original structure was built by the Spaniards in the 18th century.  It is the seat of the Provincial Government in Batanes.

SAN CARLOS MAHATAO
This town holds the Ivatan’s birth certificate. First town from Basco. Rich in Cultural Heritage sites & practices.

RAKUH-A-IDI OLD SETTLEMENT
Birthplace of the Ivatans. One of the largest settlements on the eastern part of Batan Island built in the pre-Hispanic period.

TAYID LIGHTHOUSE
Built recently in 2000, the lighthouse boats of an uninterrupted spectacular view of the Pacific Ocean well as the other part of the Batan Island and its rugged mountains cliffs facing South China Sea.

RAKUH-A-PAYAMAN
This is where you marvel about God’s creation. When you’re in this spot, a visitor oftentimes silently stands in awe and whisper a prayer. The endless rolling hills, wind-swept communal pasturelands for cattle and horses, . Perfect scenery for nature lovers & photographers.  The Sound of Music should have been filmed here.

DIURA FISHING VILLAGE
A tiny village facing the Pacific Ocean around three kilometers east of Mahatao town. Site where local fishermen perform the Kapayvanuvanua ritual to signify the start of the fishing season. The local government maintains a traditional house that it rents to visitors. Perfect site to escape crowded town centers.

SAN CARLOS BORROMEO CHURCH
Built in 1873 A.D. by Onesimo Polo using limestone for wall and cogon roofing. Declared by the National Museum and the National Commission for Culture and the Arts as one of 26 churches in the Philippines recognized as cultural icons.

CHAWA VIEW DECK
It’s water as far as your eyes can see. Perfect spot to enjoy Batanes sunset facing the South China Sea.  You can take the 100-plus steps down the adjacent cliff to fish, take more pictures, or simply to test endurance.

DISVAYANGAN BEACH
Row of privately-owned picnic houses with basic house facilities which are offered for rent. It’s the best beachfront spot there is in this part of town. The place is adjacent to a government-operated recreation building featuring two bowling lanes and billiards room.

RAKUH-A-IDI SPRING
The locals call this the Spring of Youth. It is quietly tucked in below where the first Ivatans lived. One can also offer prayers at the Our Lady of Lourdes grotto located near the spring water’s main source.

SUMHAO WIND TURBINES
You come here not to see windmills. You endure rough roads and an uphill trek to be on the finest spot to relish a 360-degree of God’s magnificent creation. The island’s two highest peaks stand guard on opposite ends. On a clear day, you can view the northernmost islands of Batanes.

SAN JOSE DE IVANA
It may as well be the smallest of the towns in Batanes, but its hold on the most epic stories of Ivatan gallantry is incomparable. Around 14 kilometers south of the main town, its two municipal ports serve as gateway to Sabtang.

HOUSE OF DAKAY
Built in the 18th century, it is probably the most photographed house in Batanes.  It is one of the last few standing century old houses being used to date.

SAN JOSE OBRERO CHURCH
The only church in Batanes with a separate campanile built in 1784. The campanile was built in 1814-1817 by Fr. Jose Fausto de Cuevas. The present façade is built by Fr. Fabian Martin in 1866-1869.

HONESTY COFFEE SHOP
Unmanned refreshments store famous worldwide for showcasing Ivatan’s ‘honesty.’ There’s no standby seller and instead rely on the honor system when paying for goods taken from the store.  It is located in front of the Ivana Church near the Radiwan Port.  It has a commanding view of Sabtang island.

SPANISH BRIDGE
Located in middle of town, this is likely the oldest bridge in the entire province still used to date. Built by the Spaniards.

UYUGAN
The fourth and last town in Batan island. Traditional Ivatan houses line the entire stretch of the main road in the This town pioneered drift net fishing for dibang and it is the site of the thriving palek (local wine) industry.  The traditional building of house through cooperativism called kapañidungan or in Uyugan, Kamañidungan is still strongly practiced in Uyugan.

SONG-SONG RUINS
What remains of this village wiped out in a 1954 tidal wave are ruins of a once vibrant community. This group of destroyed lime and stone houses is seen a few meters from the beach in Songsong.

BARANGAY ITBUD
The town is divided in the middle by a narrow national road. More traditional Ivatan houses may be found here. Located 23 kilometers from the main town, it is where you can buy the best tasting local wine (called palek). The main road leads to the church at the far end of the village.

ITBUD IDJANG
One of the highest points in the community, this was once a settlement of old Ivatans.

IMNAJBU
This is the last village from Basco. Said to be the site where the first mass in Batanes was said and consequently, where the first baptism was administered during the Spanish times. The village chapel was named after San Lorenzo Ruiz, the first canonized Filipino saint. Only a few families live here today. Chances are, when you visit, the townsfolk are tending the farms. Yet you see all the doors and windows in the village open.

SABTANG ISLAND
A visit to Batanes is never complete without staying in Sabtang. Make sure you move heaven and earth to get to this heaven on earth.  Of the three islands in Batanes, this is the smallest.

AHAW/NAKABUANG BEACH
One of the most pictured beach spot in Batanes.  Famous for its stone/rock arch formation in a very private cove. Ideal site for picnic, snorkeling and camping.

SAVIDUG IDJANG
Idjangs are ancient Ivatan settlements which served as fortresses against invaders. The idjang found in Savidug is considered to be the most beautiful and perfectly shaped among the Batanes Idjangs. A visit to Savidug is like being transported to a different world.

SAVIDUG BARRIO
Only around three kilometers from town center, this village is abounds in traditional houses.  It is the site where the endangered black face spoonbill was sighted years ago, the number of the bird worldwide is not more than 2000.

CHAVAYAN BARRIO
Walk past Savidug village to get to Chavayan. Spending the night here is the essence of a Sabtang visit. Famous for its rows of old houses, old streets, old sites. Chavayan is likely what you will forever remember about your vacation in Batanes.

CHAVAYAN CHURCH
This church is not special because it’s the only remaining church in Batanes roofed with cogon grass. Neither is it extraordinary because it’s ten meters away from the beach. It is exceptional because it makes you feel closest to God at this remote place. Most romantic church there is.

DUVEK BAY, SUMBANGA
Site of the most pristine coral conditions in Batanes. In Sumnanga, you’re in Little Hongkong, they say.

ITBAYAT ISLAND
There are other islands farther up north, but this is by far the closest inhabited island to Taiwan. Being in Itbayat makes one closer to Taiwan than mainland Luzon.  The island of Itabyat is one of the world’s largest uplifted coral reefs. It is northwest of Batan island bounded on the east by Pacific Ocean, on the west by South China Sea and on the north by small uninhabited islands such as Siayan, Matarem, Misanga, and Mavudis, which form the northern most tip of the Philippines.

MT. KAROBOBAN
Highest point in Itbayat, about 280 meters above sea level. Its historical significance is being the other pair of Mt. Riposed, considered to be one of the island’s foundations.

It is also an old settlement for the early settlers of Itbayat.

TORONGAN CAVE
The most ancient dwelling place in Batanes. Believed to be the first landing place of the Austronesians from Formosa, 4000 BP.

TORONGAN HILL
An area where stone boat-shaped burial markers are found. This area is believed to be the burial ground of the ancient settlers of the Torongan Cave.

KUMAYASAKAS CAVE AND WATER SOURCE
It is an underground stream on the Northwest of Itbayat.  It flows to the sea and is a newly develop water source for the community.

NAHILI DO VOTOX
An ancient settlement with boat-shaped burial markers. Its Idjang has a spectacular view of Dinem and the eastern coast of Ibayat Island. It reflects the material cultural remains of ancient maritime people.

MT. RIPOSED
With its panoramic views, one of the two volcanoes considered to have been the foundation of Itbayat. On top, you will see the view of the southeast of Itbayat. Across the plain is the airstrip and on the southern tip of the airstrip is Lake Kavaywan.

RAPANG CLIFF
A natural park. It comprises of forest, natural cliffs and rocky hills where natural bonsai arius tree abound and a grazing area for goats. Amidst this natural splendor is a natural stone bell. It is a flat stone which lies naturally upon another stone, which when you strike with another stone, it produces a sound which resembles a bell.

Accordingly, it serves as an alarm for the ancient inhabitants when enemies are approaching. It also serves them as a signal for meetings and gathering their goats.

SIAYAN ISLAND
The nearest island to Itbayat about 5.5 nautical miles point to point. It has a total land area of 87.63 hectares surrounded by beautiful white beaches. Surrounding the island is a rich coral which is sanctuary of hundreds of marine life. This is one of the most beautiful spot in Itbayat.

MANOYOK
This sinkhole serves as a giant drainage of the town of Itbayat. It was explored by a German, Dr. Gechard Schmit on March 16, 1993 and was found to be around 45 meters depths and has two big chambers with a narrow passage between them. Manoyok is found to be a haunted sinkhole because it is a place where our ancestors used to throw witches as punishment according to local justice system during the ancient times.

STA. MARIA IMMACULADA CHURCH
Roman Catholic Church was founded in Itbayat in 1845. It took more than forty years later to complete the church and finally blessed in 1888 by Fr. Manuel Blasco.

VERNACULAR HOUSES
A combination of European and Itbayat architecture, with thick wall of stone and lime and several layers of cogon for the roof. These Ivatan houses are adapted for strong typhoon, earth quakes and other kinds of calamities. Itbayat houses have to be built this way since they receive the harshest winter winds from Siberia in December to February.