Ilocos Region: Travel back in time

Article Index

Ilocos Norte • Ilocos Sur • La Union • Pangasinan

 

Regional profile

The Ilocos Region is located northwest of Luzon. It is composed of four provinces - Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur, La Union, and Pangasinan.


How to get there and go around

The provinces in the Ilocos Region can be accessed by road using the national highways and expressways. Travelers can ride air-conditioned buses from Metro Manila. Bus companies like Maria de Leon, Partas, Philippine Rabbit, and Viron are popular choices. The Ilocos Region is also accessible by air via the Laoag Airport in Laoag City, Ilocos Norte and San Fernando Airport in San Fernando City, La Union. Major domestic airlines that operate in the region are Cebu Pacific and Philippine Airlines.

Once in the provinces, there is a variety of transportation options travelers can choose from, depending on their destination. Mini-buses, tricycles, jeepneys, and rented vans are the usual modes of transportation for tourists.

 


Where to stay

Hotels, inns, and homestays are available in major urban and tourist centers of the Ilocos region. To learn more, provincial websites (see next page for links) have a list of accommodations for travelers.

 


What to eat

Ilocano cuisine is widely known for its use of local vegetables and pork, but coastal areas also offer a variety of seafood delicacies. Must-try food in the Ilocos Region are the Vigan Longganisa (Vigan-style smoked pork sausages) from Vigan City, Ilocos Sur; the Ilocano Bagnet (twice-cooked crispy pork belly) from the Ilocos provinces; inihaw na bangus (grilled milkfish stuffed with tomatoes and spices) from Pangasinan; and the ubiquitous pakbet (local vegetables sautéed in fish/shrimp paste). These dishes, along with other delicacies, are usually available in local restaurants.

 


What to buy

Popular items to bring home from the Ilocos region are usually food products such as tupig (grilled rice cakes) and daing na bangus (marinated deboned milkfish) from Pangasinan, Vigan Longganisa, and basi (sugar cane wine). Moreover, local crafts such as the abel Iloko (Ilocos-style loom weaving) and burnay jars (black clay jars) are available in Ilocos Sur.

For Tour Operators & Travel Agents

Department of Tourism: Overseas Offices
DOT: List of accredited establishments

Or see our article on this topic for a list of major travel agencies in the Philippines:
For tour operators and travel agencies: Doing business in the Philippines

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