Metro Manila · Batanes
Batanes is the northernmost province of the Philippines. With its very unique landscape, it is hard to believe that Batanes is still part of the archipelago. The group of ten islands between Luzon and Taiwan looks like a tropical version of Ireland, with steep cliffs and grassy hills forming a breathtaking scenery.
Batanes is a few degrees colder than most other provinces in the Philippines, making it a good place for marvelous long hikes. You will come across beautiful lighthouses, free-roaming cows, old churches, lonely beaches, caves, and many other picturesque attractions. And whichever hilltop you climb, stunning views will await you.
Only the three biggest islands Batan, Itbayat and Sabtang are inhabited. The province is sparsely populated, as the hilly and mountainous landscape offers limited terrain suitable for agriculture. The provincial capital, commercial center, and entry point for most tourists is the city of Basco on Batan Island.
The best way to discover Batanes is by booking a tour package. You will find a lot of packages online, from day tours starting at 1,500 pesos to multi-day trips including accommodation. You can start looking for offers in our list of travel agencies and tour operators. Most tours include van transportation, guided hikes through the rolly hills and along the rocky shorelines, and boat rides from island to island.
Things To Do Near Basco
Many attractions of Batanes can only be visited with tourist groups or guides. But there are also a lot of sights and destinations near Basco that can be reached individually.
- Take a walk from Basco to the nearby Naidi Hills.
- Get a 360°-view of Batan, Sout China Sea and the Pacific Ocean from the Radar Tukon weatherstation, 2.75 km from Basco.
- Have a picknick at Di-Atay Beach, 10 km from Basco.
- Go spelunking in the enchanted Chawa Cave, 4 km from Basco.
- Climb the volcano Mount Iraya, walking distance from Basco.
- Visit the beautiful San Jose Church from 1814 (14 km from Basco) and San Carlos Borromeo Church from 1789 (six km from Basco).
- Have a sumptuous seafood meal in the fisher village of Sitio Diura at Racuij-a-Ide, 9 km from Basco.
- Watch the sunset in Songsong, Chadpidan Bay, 3 km from Basco.
Philippine Airlines offers two to three daily flights from Manila to Basco Airport, depending on the season. The small carrier Skyjet Airlines also flies to Basco several times a week. The flight takes 1 hour and 45 minutes. Regular fares for both airlines are roughly 8,000 to 16,000 PHP for a roundtrip. One thing to keep in mind when planning your trip: sometimes people get stranded in Batanes for a couple of days because flights get delayed due to bad weather conditions.
Lodges, hotels and resorts can be found in Basco. They provide hospitality for little money.
You should start planning and booking your trips early, as flight seats and accommodation are rather limited.