Tag Archive | "Sabtang"

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Batanes: The island of Sabtang

Posted on 17 February 2014 by Dreidel Regala

Ever saw that picture of a beach with an arch in Batanes.

Morong Beach

Morong Beach

That’s the famous landmark of the island Sabtang. But it’s not the only thing you’ll find in the nice island.


“Nakakahilo”, these were the marking words to me by a friend over our seaside lunch in South Batan, “pero may binibigay namang throw up bag sa passengers”. They were in the island during the height of typhoon Maring and just came back a day before I landed in Basco. I was tempted to imagine disgusting trajectories but managed to divert my thoughts to the deliciousness of the coconut crab in the table. It is however unknown to me if that friend used it.

When next morning came and I found myself sitting in the faluwa, my Perfect Storm expectation was debunked. In fact the weather was perfect, the sun was out, the sea seemed normal, and the locals were mostly standing freehand in front of the boat. Mid way the boat stopped. “What’s going on?”, I blurted. “They caught fish”, pointing to the back. The boat crew was multitasking: navigating and fishing at the same time.


Fiesta and Balance

An interesting concept to fiestas in Batanes. Fiestas usually meant food feast. But food rarely gets finished the first day. So when I was in Sabtang with some friends, we were treated to a Balance. Balance generally means feasting on leftover fiesta food. Until this day though, I still don’t get why it’s called that. Afterwards we had another lunch in Morong beach hence for that day we had a hefty double lunch.

Going to "Balance"

Heading to the “Balance”

Stone houses and Overnights

The staple stone houses of Batanes are I think most abundant in Sabtang. Plus sleeping in one is possible there too. I do recommend spending at least a night (probably in Chavayan town) cause past lunch time you can have the island seemingly void of day trippers.

Stone houses in Sumnanga

Stone houses in Sumnanga

Chamantad viewing deck

On the way to the town of Chavayan, you’ll pass a viewing deck. It’s actually one of the nicest things I’ve seen in the province. Definitely worth a stop.

Chamantad viewing deck

Chamantad viewing deck

Unexpected landscapes

As with all of Batanes, random sceneries are everywhere.

Lake which appears only during rainy season

A lake which, as I was told, only appears during rainy season

Sumnanga bay

A boy playing on top of a rock under a silhouette sky

An Ivatan at work

An Ivatan at work til the sun sets

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Sea sickness and how to remedy it

Posted on 26 August 2013 by Dreidel Regala

Sea sickness is a common problem for a lot of people. The constant rocking of the boat renders an unwelcomed headache and eventually nausea to the vulnerable subject. Usually we hear advises to take motion sickness medicines but I prefer not to take any of these drugs.

Faluwa boat to Sabtang

Faluwa boat to Sabtang

In my recent boat trip to Sabtang island in Batanes, this problem is consistently the talked about topic. I traveled in August where typhoons and storms commonly linger around the country and thus causing clumsy waters.

Batan and Sabtang crossing

Crossing between Batan and Sabtang islands

The Solution

The simple (and tested) way to combat this is by just looking at the horizon. Sit near a window, face ahead, and stare outside (or if possible at your destination). I’ve done this a lot of times and I never left a boat with a used barf bag. And probably the same reason why boatmen rarely suffer from it too.

Boatmen looking ahead

Boatmen looking ahead

Now if you don’t have access to a window or you’re traveling at night you can just simply take a nap. This will make the rocking of the boat seem like it’s cradling you.

There you go. Now you can go hop islands with more ease.

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Batanes hills

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I am heading to Batanes – Join me!

Posted on 02 August 2013 by Dreidel Regala

Destination: Batanes islands, Philippines

Date: August 21-28

What used to be a hard to reach group of islands is now within the common people’s grasp. Yep, Batanes will not be a fantasy to most of us anymore. So why is the northern tip of the country so hot in the eyes of many? Simple. Just look at this.

Batanes hills

Batanes hills by ourawesomeplanet

Batanes can only be reached by plane and fares can be so mighty expensive. But good thing came a new airline which can offer promo fares. I got mine for P2,794.00 RT for what used to be a 10K regular fare! Only draw is that I booked mine in the months of rainy season but who knows sun might join me then :)

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