Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Philippines - Things to Do in Laoag City

With my visit to Paoay Church, my purpose in Laoag City was over and I was ready to leave the city first thing tomorrow morning to Vigan City, another UNESCO Heritage Site. Before I embarked on another bus ride, I did manage to explore Laoag City. It has more to offer than just a pit stop. Here are some of the attractions in Laoag City that you should not miss out.

1) St. William's Cathedral

Being in Philippines means exploring their churches. As I had mentioned before, this country boasts some of the finest churches in South East Asia. St. William's Cathedral in Laoag City is definitely another architecture gem. Built in 1612, the church underwent restorations a few times due to damages done by natural disaster, the latest being 1880. Its design, a mix of Earthquake Baroque and Italian Renaissance, still retains.

St. William's Cathedral

Dedicated to San Guillermo or St. William, the yellow facade and its interior are definitely a sight for sore eyes. This local church is huge, like any other historic churches in Philippines. During my visit, a evening service was being conducted and I managed to enter the church to have a look at its beautiful interior. A must visit when in Laoag City.

Service was being conducted during my visit

2) The sinking bell tower

Sinking Bell Tower

This bell tower, built for the church, is a landmark here in Laoag City. A beautiful structure with all the trademark thick walls and stout appearance, the bell tower is really magical especially during night time. How does the sinking part in the name comes in? Well, this bell tower is literally sinking. Apparently, the tower was built on sand back in its erection and the structure has been sinking ever since. It is said that the bell tower sinks an inch every year.

The bell tower in the evening

3) Museo Ilocos Norte

Museo Ilocos Norte is an informative attraction about the lives of the peoples of this region. The museum traces the development of Ilocos Norte as well as the cultures and lifestyles of Ilocanos, hoping that it will instill pride in the youngsters of the region.

Museo Ilocos Norte

The building that houses Museo Ilocos Norte is an old Tabacalera tobacco warehouse, a huge structure right next to the Capitol Hall. All the collections are arranged accordingly to enhance the learning experience. At the price of PHP 50 (about RM 4) for admission ticket, it quite worth it.

Some of the exhibits in the museum

My favourite section has to be the ancestral house. Ilocanos are very clannish and they often will return to their ancestral house. There is an reenactment of a traditional ancestral house in the museum to give us a glimpse of how the house is decorated.

A traditional ancestral house

Besides these, you should explore the Capitol Hall and the Tobacco Monopoly Monument which are all in the town centre. 

Tobacco Monopoly Monument

Capitol Hall



  1. Interesting. Thanks for sharing. I've never been to these parts of the Philippines.

  2. you're welcome. I find Philippines has many to offer than just the popular beaches.

  3. yet to set foot here.... envy you guys! I.MUST.PLAN

  4. Haha nothing to envy about, Lily. I'm envious of you, all those free travels...

  5. free travel? only few in malaysia that is free lah. those out of malaysia are all my own money leh. ahhahahahha....

    ps : for those in malaysia - at the bottom stated collaboration is under fam trip, other in-country trips are from my own pocket wor. jangan confuse yah

  6. haha..but you do have those business trips right? for me that's free travel..