(Sabtang Island, Philippines) Looking for one of the best adventure destinations in the Philippines? Well, you don’t need to look any further than Batanes and to be more specific, Sabtang Island. Just as a safety measure in case you don’t trust what you read on some travel magazines, I fully back them up. Sabtang Island is truly an awesome place to visit.
Sit Down and Relax
When you are leaving Ivana, Sabtang Island is just a mere 45 minute faluwa ride away and the faluwa boat will bring you to the awesome cultural heritage and natural beauty of Sabtang. Once you leave Ivana you will cruise over gorgeous waters and come up upon the rugged and awe-inspiring cliffs that the island is well known and often photographed for. The nature and wonders of Sabtang are world renowned and well worth the visit.
Kids in Sabtang Island
For those involved in cultural or historical tourism, Sabtang is a required stop. It is the only place in all of Batanes where the original Ivatan houses of lime and stone can still be found. Think a modern house is better? Think again when you watch a typhoon blow down all the modern houses and these Ivatan houses is still standing strong. Those with no windows faced the strongest winds.
Moving on to Chavayan, visitors will find that the stone houses are inhabited! The villagers live in a traditional way and still engage in traditional native handicrafts such as the manufacture of traditional headgear and clothing such as the Vacul made from the Vuyabuy palm tree. It doesn’t get much more Batanese than that!
Stone House in Chavayan
Wildlife and nature lovers are also in for a treat on Sabtang where a number of unique endemic and endangered species can be found both on the land and in the sea. A favorite with visitors are the beautiful butterflies which can be found in all of the Batanese gardens and yards. The beaches of Sabtang are also amazing and offer a great place to swim, dive, or just lounge around and enjoy the beach. One such place is Nakanmuan Beach.
Sea to Summit Dry Bags
The food on Sabtang is fairly typical of Batanes cuisine, but has some Ivatan specialties which include different types of vegetables, fired fish, coconut crab, buko juice, steamed sigarilyas, and my favorite steamed lobster. The price won’t set you back an arm or a leg either since it rings in at under 300 php per person for the very best the island offers.
This is why Batanes is Green!
It doesn’t take you days and days to explore the island and you can easily do it as a day trip, but I recommend finding a great little spot to camp on the beach and just hanging out for a day or two. The boats make semi-frequent trips back and forth.
Depending on the time of the year you go, you should be prepared for some touch and go weather. Dry sacks are a good idea if the weather is rough and don’t forget, the pirates wear eye patches to prevent seasickness, so if you feel ill on the boat, just close one eye. LOL
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