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Vigan: Sights, Sounds and Everything in Between

Vigan is a fourth class city and is the capital of Ilocos Sur. A visit to this historical city will bring you back to Spanish colonial times with the clopping of horse carriages, cobblestone streets and old houses transformed into shops, restaurants and hotels.

Photodiary: The Historical City of Vigan

Vigan was already a trading post before the Spaniards came. Seafarers traded other goods from Asian kingdoms in exchange for gold, beeswax and other products that came from the Cordilleras region. A part of the city is a UNESCO World Heritage Town as it is one of the very few remaining Hispanic towns left intact. I couldn't help but notice the change from modern buildings into old homes an cobblestone streets as I inched closer to the UNESCO-listed area.

Horse-drawn carriages are a common sight when you walk around the historic part of Vigan. The clopping of hooves add to the feeling of being lost in time.

Some of the structures were not full restored but they still looked quite beautiful in their decaying state. This may be a point of argument for some because they would want structures to be fully restored, but it didn't bother me that some of the buildings were only partially restored.

Some of the old structures in the historical area were transformed into restaurants and hotels. During my visit, all of the restaurants were packed and had lines before being served.

Several tourists were present along the cobblestone streets, they bought souvenirs (the famous longganisa and bagnet of Ilocos), taking photos and wandering around. It took some imagination to picture this area as it was during the Spanish era. I tried to imagine Spaniards and Filipinos walking on the street or on carriages going about their own business.

As in many old towns in the Philippines, a place would be incomplete without a church.

Most of the tourists were locals going on a weekend getaway. Unlike Georgetown, Melaka and Hoi An, Vigan had very few foreign tourists at least during the time I visited.

The historic town of Vigan is a nice place to wander around in because of its vibrant past. Once you cross the last section of the cobblestone streets, you get to concrete roads, modern houses and commercial establishments such as Jollibee and Greenwich. A walk through the town is like going through a time warp where you are stuck between the past and the present.

I've heard and read about the elaborate celebrations held in Vigan for different occasions such as Christmas, Holy Week and other holidays that Filipinos enjoy and splurge on. I thought about how the city would look in such occasions. The old houses and streets would look different with epic Christmas lighting, decorations of varying colors, dioramas or people walking around in costumes. Maybe I'll come back to this beautiful city in another time of the year.

1 comment:

  1. This is one of Philippine tourist places na talagang gusto kong puntahan. One of a kind place. I am glad that this place is well preserved.