Monday, August 10, 2009

Batanes: Chavayan, Savidug, Nakabuang Beach and more from Sabtang

Sabtang Island is a must-visit for anyone who wants to experience Batanes. The last time I was in Batanes, the waters were rough. So the trip to Sabtang was an ordeal. But when I was there in May, the waters were calm.

In Sabtang, we visited the villages of Savidug and Chavayan. On the way to Chavayan from Savidug, you'll be able to see an idiang, the ruins of an old stone fortresses on top of which early Ivatan settlements were built. For more details on these, check out Batanes stone houses in Savidug and Chavayan, Nakabuang Beach and more from Sabtang Island.

Lunch was at Nakabuang Beach where tables were set-up for the group. A staple dish in most Sabtang lunches is lobster. So if you do get to visit, make sure to tell your guide you want to have lobster for lunch. I'll discuss what we ate in another post.

It's best to be back in Batan Island early in the afternoon since the water tends to get rough the later it gets. There's actually another village worth visiting is Sumnanga. But you'll have to stay overnight if you want to visit it since it's a bit far. The tourism office of Sabtang has a few rooms for tourists who decide to stay on the island for a night.

As soon as we got back to Batan, everyone went for a rest in Fundacion Pacita. We had a barbecue dinner planned there in the evening plus a cultural presentation. The locals performed the Palo-Palo Dance, an Ivatan dance which reenacts the conflict and eventual reconciliation between the Spaniards and Ivatans (a big part of local fiesta celebrations), and serenaded us with local Ivatan folk songs.

Part 1: Batanes adventure: Mahatao, Ivana and Uyugan
Part 3: Batanes adventure: Valugan Beach, Vayang, Nakamaya Burial Grounds, Diura Fishing Village and Naidi Hill

Related entries
Batanes, undiscovered paradise up north
Marlboro Country, Mahatao Church and more from Batan Island
Batanes stone houses in Savidug and Chavayan, Nakabuang Beach and more from Sabtang Island
Batanes hotels and restaurants plus exploring Batanes by bike


  1. Did you visit this month? I'd love to go there next time I'm in the Philippines but planning a Batanes trip seems to me like playing patentero with the typhoons at this time of the year.

  2. Sounds like a very organized and fun travel tour! Would you mind sharing with us where you signed up for the package tour and the cost? Oh and another thing. A lot of people have told me that going to Batanes by plane is pretty scary. Is it true that it's always a turbulent ride to get there? Thanks! ;-) Love your posts! ;-)

  3. Thanks for featuring Batanes and my hometown Ivana.

    Dios mamajes!

  4. Sharm Naguit26.8.09

    Batanes is one of the places that i would like to visit. pde ba sumama s next na lakad nyo? :D

  5. Sure, we'll post the schedule :D

  6. chari25.9.09

    hi there, batanes is really my dream destination...however i have to save a lot coz when i did the research,air fare palang seems costly...can u share some budget tips for students like me?thanks

  7. Anonymous30.11.09

    Just came from an 8-day vacation (20-28 November 2009) at Batanes, visiting Itbayat (describing the falowa ride going there as "exciting" is an understatement hehehe!) and Sabtang (overnight lang because the ferry left Ivana port late). I was fortunate to stay at the churches so residence and food was basically free (although I gave a donation before I left). The nice thing about visiting Batanes outside the usual tourism season is that there are no tourists. The downside is the weather. My trip to Itbayat was moved a day later. Fortunately, I had time to burn.

    Nina: SEAir uses a small-ish plane. Trip was not scary, although on the way to Batanes, there was a bit of air turbulence over Luzon. I guess the flight becomes scary if you take a chartered flight with ChemTrad or the other smaller commuter airlines because they make use of even smaller airplanes.

    Chari: I've read that doing homestays are cheaper than staying at the hotel. There's also a DOT-run (I think) inn there that is cheap. Check it out.

    Whatever the budget, a trip to Batanes is worth every centavo. :)


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