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Welcome to Ilocos Region

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Ilocos is a region in the Philippines, encompassing the northwestern coast of Luzon island. Ilocos Region is known for its historic sites, beaches, and the well-preserved Spanish colonial city of Vigan . Dating from the 16th century, Vigan’s Mestizo district is characterized by cobblestone streets and mansions with wrought-iron balconies. Farther north, Laoag City is a jumping-off point for the huge La Paz Sand Dunes.

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Best Time to Visit

For the best combination of agreeable temperatures of around 27° C (80° F) and as little rain as possible, the best time to visit this region is between February and March. The first months of dry season can still be rainy, while the last months are usually pretty hot and humid.

Area: 13,012.60 km² (5,024.19 mi²)

Population:  5,301,300

Density:  370/km 2

Regional Center:  San Fernando, La Union

Languages: Ilocano ; Pangasinan ; Bolinao ; English ; Filipino

Provinces:  

REGION 1 – Ilocos Region

Cities: (9) Alaminos ; Batac ; Candon ; Dagupan ; Laoag ; San Carlos ; San Fernando ; Urdaneta ; Vigan

Barangays: 3,267

Major Industries :

  • Crops (Palay, Corn, Banana, Mango, Tomato, Tobacco, Coconut)
  • Food Processing
  • Mass Transportation Operation
  • Aqua Culture

Getting Here

The best way to get to Ilocos Region depends on where you’re traveling from and your budget.

The fastest and most convenient method of travel a far distance in the Philippines is most often by plane, however in some cases, traveling by sea or land may be a better option and more cost-effective.

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BUS TERMINALS

Bus Terminal

Use the following online service to determine the various transportation options available to you based on your point of departure and your destination.

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Getting Around

The following are the modes of transportation available in this region. 

Bus

Car for Hire

Car Rental

Motorcycles

Bicycles

Suggested Budget

Use the chart below to get an idea of how much to budget daily.  Actual amounts will depend on YOUR travel style. Keep in mind these are daily averages … some days you’ll spend more, some days you’ll spend less. Prices are in USD.

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SEE & DO 

  • Calle Crisologo
  • Kapurpurawan
  • Umbrella Rock

EAT & DRINK

  • Alaminos Longanisa (Pangasinan)
  • Bagnet (Ilocos Norte)
  • Bagnet Pizza (Ilocos Sur)
  • Bagoong (Pangasinan)
  • Bangus (Pangasinan)
  • Batac Empanada (Ilocos Norte)
  • Binalonan longganisa (Pangasinan)
  • Binungey (Pangasinan)
  • Halo-halo de Iloko (La Union)
  • Ilocos Norte Burrito (La Union)
  • Kilawen (La Union)
  • La Union Fried Chicken (La Union)
  • Longganisa (Ilocos Norte)
  • Pigar-pigar (Pangasinan)
  • Pinakbet (Ilocos Norte)
  • Poqui-poqui (Ilocos Norte)
  • Puto Calasiao (Pangasinan)
  • Romana Peanut Brittle (Pangasinan)
  • Vigan empanada (Ilocos Sur)
  • Vigan longaniza (Ilocos Sur)

WHERE TO STAY

Where to stay in ilocos region.

Use the following online resources to determine the best place for YOU to stay when visiting the Ilocos region.

Book Online & Save Money

Book your room with these trusted online booking sites.  Booking online in the Philippines almost always guarantees the best price and a room when you arrive.  We use these sites frequently to get the best prices and enjoy convenient bookings. Click each of the buttons below to find the best place for you at the lowest rates or use the form below.

EVENTS & FESTIVALS

  • Bangus Festival

WHAT’S NEARBY

  • Central Luzon Region
  • Cordillera Administrative Region

READ MORE: 17 Regions of the Philippines (with map)

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About the Author

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Patrick is an entrepreneur, digital nomad, explorer, and photographer. Patrick is always in search of fun and adventure. He is well travelled throughout the world, and although location independent, his home base is Phoenix, Arizona in the USA. Patrick loves island lifestyle which is no wonder why he is so interested in spending time in the Philippines with it’s over 7,000 islands. Patrick created this site to share his knowledge of and experiences in the Philippines with Filipinos as well as other foreigners.

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15 Best ILOCOS SUR Tourist Spots (Heritage & Nature)

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Hey there! Are you ready for another exciting adventure? Well, I’m sure that you’ll love our next destination which is famous for its “Old-World” architecture and stunning cultural wonders that will let you appreciate the rich history of our country. That’s right, we’re going to Ilocos Sur! This cultural and historical province has been the go-to destination for curious travelers and history buffs out there. When we talk about Ilocos Sur, the very first thing that comes to mind is the city of Vigan, a famous UNESCO World Heritage Site in the country, which is also the capital of the province and where the classic “Bahay na Bato” houses can be found. Oh, and it’s also obviously the origin place of the delicious Vigan Longganisa !

But aside from Vigan City, there are still a lot of breathtaking hidden gems yet to be uncovered in the whole province. From different religious landmarks, cultural buildings, and close encounters with nature, our adventure in Ilocos Sur will absolutely be one of the most memorable experiences of your whole life!

So, are you ready? I hope you’ve cleared enough memory space on your cameras because we’re definitely going to fill those up with fantastic pictures. Come and join me because here are the 15 Best Tourist Spots in Ilocos Sur!

1. Calle Crisologo

One of the most iconic tourist destinations not only in Ilocos Sur but in the entire Philippines is the nostalgic old-world street of Calle Crisologo. Visiting this breathtaking street will make you feel like you’re traveling back in time as you encounter century-old buildings, houses, tungsten lamps, and cobblestone walkways. The street spans for a length of 500 meters where only pedestrians and calesas or horse-drawn carriages are allowed. This gives tourists a chance to admire and enjoy what it was like to live 200 years ago. What an unforgettable experience indeed!

Vigan Ilocos Sur

Calle Crisologo is also the perfect place to immerse yourselves in the rich culture of Ilocos Sur because some of the ancestral houses were turned into souvenir shops and fantastic restaurants serving irresistible Ilocano delights like bagnet, Ilocos empanada , and many more! Calle Crisologo is undoubtedly the face of Ilocos Sur’s culture and tourism. This is why you shouldn’t miss the chance of exploring it during your visit! CHECK HOTELS IN VIGAN HERE

2. Bantay Church Bell Tower

Another iconic symbol that played a huge role in Vigan City’s rich culture and history is the Bantay Church Bell Tower. This bell tower served as the city’s watchtower when it was built in 1591 to alert against possible enemies and invasions.

Bantay Church Bell Tower

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Located in Bantay , Ilocos Sur, this popular landmark is only about 10 minutes away from the city of Vigan so it’s relatively easy to reach it. A lot of people visit the Bantay Church Bell Tower because of the undeniable beauty and nostalgic feeling it gives to the place.

It is a significant piece of the country’s history that unbelievably stood the test of time, war, and natural disasters. Be sure to take some nice pictures!

3. Vigan Cathedral

Visiting Vigan Cathedral will be absolutely one of the highlights of your adventure in Vigan City because this cathedral serves as a huge reason why the city was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Also known as the Metropolitan Cathedral of the Conversion of St. Paul the Apostle, the church plays a huge role in the religious culture of Ilocanos because it serves as the seat of the Archdiocese of Nueva Segovia. The cathedral in itself is already a tourist destination because of the stunning design of the facade and the interior.

Vigan Cathedral

The church was built way back in 1574 and has been through a lot of renovation and reconstruction over the years. At night, the cathedral lights up beautifully which attracts hundreds of tourists and locals to take pictures after the mass.

READ THE BLOG POST: Vigan Blog Post

4. Baluarte Resort and Mini Zoo

Well, yes! Ilocos Sur isn’t only about century-old buildings and churches, you also have the chance to get closer to nature and meet lovely animals during your visit. The Baluarte Resort and Mini Zoo are owned by the famous Ilocano politician Chavit Singson. This park covers a huge area of 100 hectares and features several exciting attractions and activities that people of all ages will surely love! It’s your chance to meet rare animals up close such as Bengal tigers, lions, peacocks, and many more. There are also several animal statues and figures displayed all over the zoological park which I’m sure children will really love.

Aside from the wonderful animal interactive activities waiting for you here at the Baluarte Resort and Mini Zoo, the park also features a museum, the Safari Gallery, where you can find hundreds of displays and artifacts showcasing the beautiful history of wildlife from different places all over the world. The best part? There’s no entrance fee here at Baluarte Resort and Mini Zoo!

READ THE BLOG POST:  Baluarte Ilocos Sur Blog Post

5. Crisologo Museum

Another must-visit and educational destination waiting for you in Ilocos Sur are the Crisologo Museum. This ancestral house turned museum is owned by the Crisologo Family, one of the most powerful and prominent families in the province’s history. The head of the family, Floro Crisologo, was once a congressman of Ilocos Sur, and therefore became an important figure in the province’s political affairs.

Crisologo Museum

Photo by Vigan Paradores

The museum contains the family’s antique memorabilia such as furniture, clothes, kitchen equipment, and many more. Visiting Crisologo Museum will give you a chance to go back in time and see how Filipinos lived throughout history.

6. Syquia Mansion Museum

The Syquia Mansion Museum on the other hand is also an ancestral home owned by Estefania Angco and Gregorio Syquia, who both belong to powerful Ilocano families. The mansion museum is located in Vigan City and is part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site’s highlighted buildings.

Syquia Mansion Museum

Photo: Inquirer Lifestyle

Exploring the museum will let you catch a glimpse of the Philippines’ rich culture during the Spanish Colonial Era featuring the family’s antique heirlooms and significant artifacts. Indeed, visiting the Syquia Mansion Museum allows us to travel back in time and understand the beauty of Filipino history through high-valued antiquities. A great experience is indeed waiting for you here!

7. Candon Church

The Saint John of Sahagun Parish Church or more popularly known as Candon Church is another significant religious landmark located in Ilocos Sur. The church was built in the year 1591 and is still used and visited up to this day. Unlike most of our featured destinations so far which are located in Vigan City, this one is located in the city of Candon , Ilocos Sur. Candon is dubbed the “Tobacco Capital of the Philippines” so obviously, the city specializes in Tobacco products and is in fact the largest producer of Virginia-type tobacco in the country.

Candon Church

Photo by Wikipedia

A unique experience is waiting for you here during your visit to Candon Church, so I suggest that you make the most of it and buy as many pasalubongs as you can!

8. Mindoro Beach of Vigan

Ah, finally! After a tiring day of walking and exploring all the stunning cultural buildings and landmarks of Vigan City, it’s time to just sit back, relax, and enjoy the beach.

Mindoro Beach of Vigan

Photo by TripAdvisor

So, where do we go from here? Well, there’s a famous beach destination near the city called the Mindoro Beach of Vigan known for its clean gray sands, deep blue waters, and the refreshing sea breeze. It is indeed the perfect place to relax and escape the cobblestone walkways of Vigan City. Oh, and it’s also a nice place to watch the sunset with your family and friends!

9. Sta. Maria Church

The Santa Maria Church is another significant religious structure located in Ilocos Sur and is popularly known for its unique design and architecture. Also known as the Our Lady of the Assumption Parish Church, the exterior design of the church features the use of bricks and mortar as its main components. This unique design justified the rich history of the Santa Maria Church because it was once used as a citadel during the Spanish Colonial Era where Spanish soldiers along with friars were camped.

Sta. Maria Church

The Santa Maria Church is undoubtedly one of the must-see tourist destinations in Ilocos Sur especially for Catholics because it is considered a National Cultural Treasure and UNESCO World Heritage Site.

10. Plaza Salcedo

One of the reasons why Vigan City is one of the most famous tourist destinations in the country is because of the very people living in it. Yes, there are countless nostalgic buildings scattered all around but nothing beats the experience of interacting with the locals and learning more about their culture and history. Well, that being said, the best place in Vigan to do this is no other than the iconic Plaza Salcedo. The plaza and park are located at the heart of Vigan City where tourists can easily access significant landmarks such as the Saint Paul Cathedral, Archbishop’s Palace, Vigan City Hall, and many more!

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Plaza Salcedo is also a perfect place to buy souvenirs and other local products from the friendly vendors around. Oh, and don’t you dare miss the famous Dancing Fountain Show held in Plaza Salcedo featuring colorful jets of water and laser lights which is absolutely a visual treat for everyone!

11. Narvacan Church

Located at the place famously known as “The Town that Would Never Sink” or Narvacan , Ilocos Sur is another incredibly beautiful religious landmark. Narvacan Church or the Santa Lucia Parish Church is a must-visit destination for history buffs and heritage structure fans. There are tons of history tucked within this amazing structure because it was built way back in 1587 by the Augustinian priests. The church’s facade and exterior design are absolutely stunning so if ever you’re looking for ideas for your next Visita Iglesia adventure, then add Narvacan Church already to your list!

12. Padre Burgos House

Another beautiful ancestral home nestled within the heart of Vigan City is the Padre Burgos House. The famous priest and patriot Jose Burgos belongs to the iconic trio of GomBurZa, the three Filipino Catholic priests who were beheaded using the garrote. The GomBurZa became a huge part of the Philippine Revolution and inspired our national hero, Dr. Jose Rizal to fight for our freedom.

The Padre Burgos House also serves as a museum where hundreds of important historical artifacts belong to major ethnic groups including the Ilocanos, Kankana-ey, and Itneg. Various antiquities like musical instruments, wooden coffins, jars, rare paintings, and many more are beautifully displayed here. And of course, a special section dedicated to Padre Jose Burgos can be found in the museum containing all of his life’s collection and personal memorabilia.

13. Ilocos Sur Adventure Zone

Ah, and there it is! Are you ready for another fun-filled and adrenaline-pumping experience you’ll never forget? Well, suit yourselves because that’s exactly what Ilocos Sur Adventure Zone will bring for us! This national park and adventure center is located at the boundaries of Bantay and Santa, Ilocos Sur. It’s actually near another must-visit landmark in the province, the Old Quirino Bridge.

Countless fun and exciting activities are waiting for you here at the ISAZ such as kayaking, rappelling, rock climbing, Zorb Balls, ziplines, and many more. It’s also a perfect chance to enjoy outdoor activities and be closer than ever to nature because there are rivers, mountains, and forests surrounding you. So, what are you waiting for? Come and visit Ilocos Sur Adventure Zone!

14. Pagburnayan Jar Factory

Pottery and jar-making are a huge part of Ilocos Sur’s culture, especially in the town of Pagburnayan. The people here use a century-old method of making Burnay Jars which are said to be more durable than the famous terracotta jars.

These jars are often used to store water, grains, and also the native Basi Wine. That’s why visiting a Pagburnayan Jar Factory during your visit to Ilocos Sur is a nice way to know more about the province’s cultural and traditional practices. Oh, and you can also buy some of their jars and clay pots as your souvenirs!

15. Hidden Garden

Ah, yes! As they say, it’s always nice to save the best for last. And by visiting the Hidden Garden last, which is actually a hidden gem in Vigan City, we are undoubtedly justifying that beautiful quote. Why? Well, it’s because the Hidden Garden gives us a glimpse of a tropical paradise and I’m sure our beloved plantitos and plantitas out there will fall in love with this place. There are beautiful plants and ornaments scattered all over the place which therefore gives you a chance to take unlimited Instagrammable photos of yourself!

Hidden Garden

The best part? There’s a restaurant there called the Lilong and Lilang Restaurant which serves some of the most delicious Ilocano dishes like Vigan Longganisa, Bagnet , Silog Meals, Sisig, and many more. See? What a beautiful ending to our Ilocos Sur adventure!

More Ilocos Blog Posts

  • 15 Best Vigan Tourist Spots
  • One Ilocos Sur Cafe Experience
  • 15 Best Ilocos Norte Tourist Spots
  • VIGAN EMPANADA: Try This Delicious Snack When You Travel to Vigan
  • Best Beach Resorts in Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte
  • Bangui Windmills in Ilocos Norte

More Tourist Spots in the Philippines

  • 15 Best Tourist Spots in Isabela
  • 15 Best Tourist Spots in Nueva Vizaya
  • 15 Best ABRA Tourist Spots (Waterfalls, Caves and More)

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The Ilocos Region

The beautiful northwestern region of ilocos:.

The Ilocos Region, designated as Region I, is situated in the northern portion of Luzon, the largest island in the Philippines. This region is comprised of four provinces: Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur, La Union, and Pangasinan.

Known for its rich history, diverse culture, and stunning natural wonders, the Ilocos Region promises a memorable travel experience. Its geography is characterized by a flat coastal plain, rugged mountains, stunning beaches, and fertile farmlands.

Ilocos Norte, the northernmost province in the region, boasts the famous white sand beaches of Pagudpud, and the remarkable Bangui windmills, the first power-generating windmill farm in Southeast Asia.

Ilocos Sur, on the other hand, is home to Vigan, a well-preserved Spanish colonial town recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The cobblestone streets and ancestral houses make it feel like stepping back into a bygone era.

La Union, known as the ‘Surfing Capital of the North’, is a favorite destination for both novice and professional surfers. It is also home to beautiful waterfalls and hot springs.

Meanwhile, Pangasinan is famous for the Hundred Islands National Park, a massive marine sanctuary featuring 124 islands and islets scattered around Lingayen Gulf.

Aside from these attractions, the Ilocos Region is also renowned for its local cuisine. Dishes like pinakbet, longganisa (local sausage), and bagnet (deep-fried pork belly) are a must-try for any food enthusiast.

Whether you’re interested in history, fascinated by nature, or curious about local food, the Ilocos Region undoubtedly offers something to captivate any traveler.

When you are traveling to these locations you are going to need some good traveling gear, so don’t forget to read my blog from last week:

What Should You Buy Before Travelling? – Philippine Tourism and Statistics (turistasapilipinas.com)

Surfing San Juan Beach in La Union.

Drone Video by Mervin Enao of the Bangui windmills

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Vigan City, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

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Laoag signage in plaza

Laoag Ilocos Norte Travel Guide: What to Do + Hotels + Itinerary

Jinger Cabillen

Best Time to Go to Laoag

How to get to laoag, by land travel, getting around laoag, where to stay in laoag, fort ilocandia resort hotel, where to see and do in laoag, go museum-hopping, visit the stone churches, go wild along the coastline, what to eat in laoag.

  • Practical Information and Tips

Sample Itinerary in Laoag

Day 1: arrival + diy walking tour, day 2: city tour + culture + food trip, day 3: sightseeing + sandboarding.

  • Day 4: Museum Tour +  Vigan Excursion + Departure

Patapat Viaduct, one of the most popular stopover going to Ilocos Norte

Discover the exciting activities and sumptuous dishes of Laoag City in Ilocos Norte. Read this guide to learn about the best time to go, how to go, where to stay, what to see and do, and other travel tips to help you plan your trip to the The Sunshine City of the north.

The word laoag means “bright” or “light” in the native Ilocano language of Ilocos region, that’s why Laoag City is called “The Sunshine City”. It's the provincial capital of Ilocos Norte, has a compact land area, but it’s packed with must-see tourist spots, rugged and mountainous terrain, and amazing beaches.

  • Find the best tours in Ilocos to fully explore Laoag
  • Book this  1-week Ilocos Baguio Sagada tour package

Paoay Church, a UNESCO World Heritage Site

In Laoag City, you’ll find how beautifully preserved colonial architecture mixes with but still stand out among modern infrastructure. 

Whether you want to chill along the beaches of Pagudpud , try out the fresh local delicacies, coast along the sand dunes, or just take a leisurely stroll around the city center, you will definitely be captivated by the tourist spots and activities in Laoag .

See our popular Ilocos Tours and Activities

Ilocos sur vigan city heritage & sightseeing tour with horse-drawn carriage ride & transfers, vigan historical sightseeing city day tour with transfers & kalesa ride, laoag city heritage attractions, paoay lake, church & sand dunes day tour with transfers.

If you’re planning to make the trip to the north of Luzon in the Philippines , this ultimate guide can help you create that complete travel Ilocos itinerary to Laoag City.

Plaza in Laoag

If you don’t want to sweat buckets during your trip, the best time to visit Laoag is during the cooler months of November to February. Christmas preparations are already in full swing by the time November comes around, so expect a lot of holiday activities during this time.

March to June are the hottest months with temperatures reaching a high of 35 degrees Celsius, with minimal rainfall. These months also coincide with Holy Week and summer break for most schools, so you may see a lot of families with school-age children in Laoag during your visit.

The months of July to October bring rain, and sometimes typhoons. The city experiences an average of 4 to 5 typhoons every year, so make sure to check weather reports regularly, especially if you plan your trip around these months.

Plane of Philippine Airlines

The fastest way is to fly to Laoag but if you’re already in Manila , there are also other options that you can choose from. Here are some of them:

Laoag has its own airport, Laoag International Airport, making it more accessible to local and international travelers.

From Manila

PAL Express has direct flights from Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) to Laoag Airport once a day every Mondays to Thursdays, and twice daily from Friday to Sunday. Travel time by plane from Manila to Laoag is about 1 hour and 10 minutes.

There are currently no direct domestic flights from major cities outside of Manila to Laoag Airport. The best option is to fly to NAIA first, as most major airlines have direct flights from Cebu, Davao, Cagayan de Oro to Manila, then take a flight to Laoag.

From International Airports

There are currently no direct international flights to Laoag. If you’re coming from outside the Philippines, we advise to fly to NAIA first, then take a PAL Express flight to Laoag Airport. Or, you can fly straight to Clark International Airport in Clark, Pampanga, then board a bus from Dau Terminal to Laoag. Travel time by bus from Dau to Laoag is about 4 to 6 hours.

Laoag is about 487km from Manila, and it takes an average of 10 hours to travel to the city. The land travel to Laoag may be longer than a flight from Manila but it’s cheaper. Here are some of your transport options.

Private Car From Manila

You can either bring a private car or hire a private van. The fastest way to drive to Laoag is via the North Luzon Expressway (NLEX), then take the exit to SCTEX/Clark Airport.

From there, follow the signs for Tarlac/Baguio/TPLEX, continue onto the Tarlac-Pangasinan-La Union Expressway, and traverse the Mac Arthur Highway to get to the city. Total driving time from Manila to Laoag is about 8 hours.

By Bus from Manila

GV Florida Transport buses depart from Sampaloc, Manila terminal to Laoag every four hours daily. Partas Bus Line also has daily trips to Laoag from Cubao, Quezon City .

You can choose from a regular aircon, luxury, and super deluxe bus. From the bus terminal, you can catch a jeepney or taxi to your hotel, or to other towns and cities near Laoag.

Tricycle is one of the modes of transportation in any province in the Phiilippines

If you brought your own vehicle, or if you rented a van for your trip, you can easily get around Laoag. If you got into the city via public transportation, you can take jeepneys to help you get around. Short trips to and from the city center are easily managed by tricycle, a motorcycle with an attached roofed sidecar. 

You can also explore the city center on foot, as most establishments and attractions within the city are located close to one another. But always remember to bring an umbrella to block the sun’s harsh rays, and a bottle of drinking water to keep yourself hydrated.  

See our popular Ilocos Vacation Packages

Ultimate 1-month philippine adventure tour package to boracay, palawan, siargao, bohol, cebu, baguio, scenic 6-day historical ilocos norte & vigan tour package with manila flights, hotel & transfers, fascinating 7-day history, heritage & nature tour package to laoag, pagudpud & vigan ilocos.

There are several Laoag hotels and resorts ranging from luxury accommodations to budget hotels. Here are some of our recommended Laoag hotels that you can book based on your budget and Ilocos itinerary :

Luxury Accommodations

After an 8-hour drive (or a 10-hour bus ride), you just might want to treat yourself to a little luxury upon reaching the city. Here are your top options for luxury accommodations in Laoag:

Facade of Fort Ilocandia Resort Hotel

Feel at home at Laoag’s top hotel, Fort Ilocandia Resort Hotel. The air-conditioned rooms come with complete bathroom amenities, a safe deposit box, personal refrigerator, and coffee/tea facilities.

An overnight stay comes with a free buffet breakfast for two, wi-fi internet access, free use of the hotel facilities, and airport transfers.

Fort Ilocandia Resort Hotel has its own shopping arcade, for hassle-free souvenir shopping for your friends and family. The hotel also has its own café, restaurant, bar, swimming pool, and golf course so you’ll never run out of things to do!

If you want a spacious room that gives you that perfect Balinese-Moroccan vibe, book a room at the Java Hotel. The air-conditioned rooms come with complete bathroom amenities with cold and hot showers, cable TV, private balcony (for select rooms), and Wi-Fi internet access.  

The Java Hotel has its own bar and restaurant, swimming pool, tennis court, a jungle gym/playground, and a 30m wall climbing facility.

Mid-range Accommodations

Creatures of comfort need not worry about finding the perfect accommodations but don’t want to spend for additional perks. Here are some mid-range hotels in Laoag to suit your sensible budget and tastes:

Entrance to Vybe Hotel

Comfortably situated near popular Ilocos Norte tourist spots, Vybe Hotel offers comfortable accommodations without breaking your budget.

This 60-room hotel is a short 10-minute drive from downtown Laoag; close enough to get into the city, but far enough from the city center if you want some peace and quiet. Complimentary breakfast is available for checked-in guests. Rooms are spacious and have complete amenities.

Viven Hotel

Viven Hotel is a boutique hotel near the Laoag city center. Their modern and air-conditioned rooms are perfect for guests who want to stay in a place that’s easily accessible to the city’s dining, shopping, and entertainment destinations.

Casa de Renzo Hotel

Get the best value for your money by booking your stay at this small budget hotel. Its wood interior, cozy rooms, and intimate dining area give off a vacation home feel. The hotel has rooms for solo travelers, couples, and small groups. There are even dorm-type accommodations for larger groups.

Budget-Friendly Accommodations

Traveling on a shoestring? Laoag also has hotels that cater to solo backpackers and small groups. Check out these best options for budget-friendly hotels in Laoag:

People’s Inn

This small, 11-room budget hotel may have only the basic facilities and amenities, but its spacious rooms, clean surroundings, and proximity to the city center more than make up for it. The hotel is within walking distance to restaurants like Kahel de Luna, and attractions like the Sinking Bell Tower and Museo Ilocos.

Farm Side Hotel

Farm Side Hotel in Laoag

Tucked away on a side street off the main road in San Nicolas, Laoag, the Farm Side Hotel is a quieter alternative for those looking for a place to stay in the city.

The rooms are designed to look like small one-bedroom bungalows, for those who would like to have a bit more privacy. The hotel is within walking distance from Robinsons Ilocos Mall and is a short tricycle or jeepney ride away from the city center.

  • Book a Sola Hotel Ilocos Norte tour package

The beauty of The Sunshine City lies in the fact that it’s able to successfully mix the historic with the modern. Even if it’s a buzzing city, travelers can still feel its warm, provincial charm, especially in the top attractions. Here are the spots included in top tours in Laoag where you can experience the wonders of both the old and the new.

See our popular Laoag Tours and Activities

Ilocos norte scenic outdoor attractions & pagudpud beach day tour with transfers from laoag, ilocos norte laoag & paoay historical attractions day tour with transfers.

Malacañang of the North in Laoag Ilocos Norte

If you love soaking up the history, culture, and traditions of a place, make a stop at the Museo Ilocos Norte along General Antonio Luna Street. The museum used to be a tobacco warehouse and houses a large collection of Ilocano, Igorot, and Itneg traditional clothing, everyday objects, and ceremonial pieces. 

  • Book a  Laoag City & Paoay Ilocos Norte top attractions shore excursion

Batac Museum, also known as the Marcos Museum and Mausoleum, showcases memorabilia of the late President Ferdinand Marcos. The museum used to be the Marcoses’ family home.

Also worth a visit is Malacañang of the North in nearby Paoay. The two-story mansion was a former holiday residence of the Marcos family, which was converted into a museum. Malacañang of the North sits on the edge of the serene and peaceful Paoay Lake.

Laoag Sinking Bell tower

The Philippines is a predominantly Roman Catholic country. As such, it is not unusual to see numerous churches in different towns and cities.

See our popular Pilgrimage Tours

Most churches in the country are large stone edifices, like St. William’s Cathedral (Laoag Church) in Laoag.

The current church was built in 1612 by Augustinian friars and constructed in the Italian Renaissance style. About 85 meters from the church is the church’s bell tower, also known as the Sinking Bell Tower. It is said that the bell tower sinks at a rate of 1 inch per year.

Some 19 km southwest of Laoag is the Paoay Church, which is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site . In contrast to St. William’s Cathedral, Paoay Church is built in the usual earthquake-baroque style, a type of Baroque architecture commonly found around the Philippines. Both churches conduct masses in Ilocano, English, and Tagalog.

San dunes in Laoag

Get an adrenaline rush and head over to the La Paz Sand Dunes! The steep slopes of the dunes make it a perfect place for sandboarding, which involves going down a sand dune on a wooden or plastic board. Rough terrain riding enthusiasts will also enjoy an exhilarating 4x4 ride up and down the sandy hills.

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Boracay island atv ride experience, mayon volcano legazpi atv ride black lava wall trail with guide & transfers, aklan 30-minute atv ride & river cliff jumping with kawa hot bath & transfers from boracay.

You can also visit and stare in awe at the Bangui Windmills, Ilocos’ “giant electric fans” on the coast of Bangui Bay, north of Laoag. The windmills are accessible to the public, so you can just head over there to feel the wind on your face while watching the giant fan blades spin.

Local food called pinakbet, a mix of vegetables cooked in fermented shrimp paste

All that walking, sandboarding, sightseeing, and picture-taking around Laoag will surely make you hungry. Fortunately, there are a lot of great food choices to choose from to whet your appetite. From traditional Ilocano dishes to fusion cuisine, Laoag City has got your tummy covered. 

One restaurant that is precious to Laoag natives is the aptly named La Preciosa. The restaurant comes highly recommended as it serves large portions of Ilocano specialties such as pinakbet (mixed vegetable stew cooked in fermented shrimp paste or bagoong), bagnet (pork belly that is deep fried multiple times in its own fat), dinardaan (offal in pig’s blood), and sarabasab (grilled pork liver in bitter sauce). 

Pizza lovers will find great joy in having their favorite carbs at Saramsam Ylocano. Here, Italy meets the Philippines with the poqui-poqui pizza, which combines the traditional Ilocano vegetable dish made with roasted eggplants, tomatoes, and eggs with fresh pizza dough. Other options such as the pinakbet pizza and longganisa (pork sausage) pizza.

Looking for a snack to tide you over in between sightseeing? Try the Ilocos empanada. These deep-fried pastries are stuffed with green papaya, minced longganisa, mung beans, and egg, and are widely sold at almost every street corner in Laoag.

Its dough is made of rice flour and achuete (annatto) seeds, which colors it bright orange. The best place to sample these tasty snacks in Laoag is in Dap-ayan. 

Practical Information and Tips

Some hotels, restaurants, and commercial establishments accept credit cards, but most smaller shops only accept cash. There are only a few ATM machines in the city proper so it’s still best to bring enough cash with you.

Currency exchange is available in most hotels.

Most hotels in Laoag offer free Wi-Fi internet connection. However, internet access will be spotty at best when you travel outside the city.

Pack light, as temperatures are almost always warm and humid. You can also opt to bring an extra shirt during your tour, so you can swap your sweaty shirt for a fresh one in between activities.

Remember to also bring a jacket or raincoat just in case the weather turns cool and rainy!   

As a city that gets lots of sunshine, make sure to always put on sunblock whenever you head out. Remember to bring your sunglasses, hats, and umbrellas as well!

There are no establishments around the sand dunes, so make sure to bring your own bottled water and something to munch on while taking a break from sandboarding.

Ready to go on an adventure to Laoag and the nearby Ilocos Norte tourist spots? Check out our sample Ilocos itinerary to make sure you get the best out of your trip to The Sunshine City.

11:55 AM -  Departure from NAIA Terminal 2 to Laoag Airport 

01:05 PM - ETA in Laoag Airport 

01:30 PM - Late lunch at La Preciosa 

03:00 PM - Late check-in at Viven Hotel, rest and freshen up 

04:00 - 06:00 PM - Take a DIY walking tour around the city 

06:00 PM - Dinner near the hotel 

08:00 PM - Call it a day. Start bright and early the next day

08:00 AM - Leisurely breakfast at the hotel

09:00 - 12:00 NN - Start of Paoay Tour. Visit Paoay Church, Malacañang of the North and Paoay Lake, which are often included in a cultural tour in Ilocos Norte

12:00 NN - Lunch at Paoay

01:30 - 06:00 PM - Continuation of cultural city tour. Visit Museo Ilocos Norte and chill at the Rizal Amusement Park 

06:00 PM - Dinner at Saramsam Ylocano 

08:00 PM - Back at the hotel. Call it a day. Start bright and early the next day

8:00 AM - Leisurely breakfast at the hotel

09:30 - 12:00 NN - Visit the Bangui Windmills, Patapat Viaduct, and Kapurpurawan Rock Formation, which are often combined in an Ilocos Norte tour

01:00 PM - Late lunch in Laoag City 

02:00 - 05:00 PM - La Paz Sand Dunes: Go on a 4x4 adventure, try sandboarding 

06:00 PM - Dinner at Cuisine de Iloco 

Day 4: Museum Tour +  Vigan Excursion + Departure

09:00 AM - Late breakfast at the hotel 

12:00 NN - Hotel check out 

12:30 PM - Lunch near the hotel 

01:30 - 06:00 PM - Join a Vigan tour . Visit Plaza Burgos, Crisologo Museum, Calle Crisologo, Syquia Mansion, and many more

06:00 - 07:00 PM - Back to Laoag. Dinner. Do some shopping for souvenirs 

07:30 PM - Travel to Laoag Airport 

09:20 PM - Departure from Laoag Airport 

11:30 PM - ETA in NAIA Terminal 2

Laoag City is Ready to Welcome You!

Laoag signage in plaza

Laoag is a lovely historic city that is the perfect blend of small-town traditional charm and big-city modern lifestyle. It is where centuries-old churches coexist with swanky office buildings and modern commercial establishments, and where the laid-back atmosphere works well with heart-pumping adventures.

The Sunshine City is a great place to unwind, bask in endless sunshine, and feel the fresh clean wind on your face.

Start planning your holiday to Laoag! Check out Ilocos tours and activities that will let you experience the charm of The Sunshine City to the fullest!

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Ilocos Region (Region I)

Ilocos Region , officially designated as Region I , is an administrative region in the Philippines occupying the northwestern section of Luzon . It covers 4 provinces , namely, Ilocos Norte , Ilocos Sur , La Union , and Pangasinan . The regional center is the City of San Fernando .

Its population as determined by the 2020 Census was 5,301,139. This represented 8.52% of the overall population of the Luzon island group, or 4.86% of the entire population of the Philippines. Based on these figures, the population density is computed at 409 inhabitants per square kilometer or 1,059 inhabitants per square mile.

Ilocos Region is bordered, clockwise from the Northeast, by the Cagayan Valley , Cordillera Administrative Region , Central Luzon , and the South China Sea.

Local government units

Ilocos Region has 4 provinces , 116 municipalities , and 9 cities . The total number of barangays in the region is 3,267.

Demographics

Population by age group.

According to the 2015 Census, the age group with the highest population in Ilocos Region is 5 to 9 , with 510,858 individuals. Conversely, the age group with the lowest population is 75 to 79 , with 61,471 individuals.

Historical population

The population of Ilocos Region grew from 948,935 in 1903 to 5,301,139 in 2020, an increase of 4,352,204 people over the course of 117 years. The latest census figures in 2020 denote a positive growth rate of 1.13%, or an increase of 275,011 people, from the previous population of 5,026,128 in 2015.

The total number of registered voters or electorate in Ilocos Region for the year 2019 was 3,331,404.

  • Unless otherwise specified, population count (excluding percentages) and land area figures are derived from the Philippine Statistics Authority.
  • Data on registered voters is from the Commission on Elections.
  • Maps utilize OpenStreetMap data available under the Open Data Commons Open Database License .

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Ilocos Norte launches new tourism ad to revive pandemic-hit industry

Ilocos Norte launches new tourism ad to revive pandemic-hit industry

The Ilocos Norte tourism office unveils a new campaign as shown on a billboard at North Luzon Expressway. (Photo courtesy of Ilocos Norte tourism office)

LAOAG CITY, Ilocos Norte—A new tourism campaign aimed at luring back tourists was launched Sunday, April 24, by the Ilocos Norte tourism office (INTO), hoping to boost the industry hit hard by the pandemic.

The campaign kicked off with a new advertisement starring a sexagenarian character named “Lolita,” who traveled to Ilocos Norte in search of adventure, INTO said.

It said the provincial government produced the advertisement directed by award-winning director Jerrold Tarog.

The new tourism advertisement “celebrates the natural beauty and culture of the province while highlighting strong family ties, values, and traditions,” INTO said in a statement.

“It follows Lola Lolita’s adventures as she goes on an unforgettable journey of rediscovering joy,” added INTO.

As Ilocos Norte fully reopens its borders to tourists, officials are hoping to revive the province’s critical driver of growth that has employed more than a thousand workers in the tourism and creative industries, including those in the informal sectors.

During the first year of the pandemic, more than P17 billion in potential revenues in the sector were lost.

It was only during Holy Week this month that the province saw another glimmer of hope as more than 14,000 tourists arrived in the province, the highest since the pandemic struck in 2020.

With the new travel advertisement, the provincial government hopes to repeat the feat of its previous campaign known as “Paoay Kumakaway,” that was launched in 2012.

Officials said the previous campaign helped generate more than two million annual visitors to the province before the pandemic shut borders to mitigate the spread of the virus in March 2020.

The provincial government said outdoor promotional materials relating to the campaign would be set up in strategic locations in Metro Manila, one of the biggest travel markets of the province.

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REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES

Department of tourism.

PST:   8:36:19

Media Release

The Department of Tourism (DOT) endeavors to ensure the tourism resiliency of the country’s prime destination, El Nido, Palawan, through the full implementation of the Sustainable Tourism Development Project (STDP) this year.

CORON, PALAWAN -- The Department of Tourism (DOT) expresses support for Coron’s sustainable tourism development to draw more visitors and hasten tourism recovery.

PUERTO PRINCESA CITY, PALAWAN -- Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat supports the decision of Puerto Princesa City (PPC) executives to reopen its attractions to more domestic tourists with minimum health and safety standards in place.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) starting today, March 1, opens the application for the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) Safe Travels Stamp to all DOT-accredited accommodation establishments (AEs) and tourism destinations that are open to local tourists.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) celebrates the inclusion of Boracay's world-famous White Beach at the 12th spot and El Nido, Palawan's Nacpan Beach at 18th of the TripAdvisor Travelers' Choice 2021 Best of the Best Awards Top 25 Beaches - Asia category.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) is for the safe reopening of tourist destinations as this allows us to restart our economy and help our tourism workers regain their jobs. The Department therefore welcomes the approval of uniform travel protocols for all local government units (LGUs) by the Inter-Agency Task Force on the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID) to facilitate travel movement and promote local tourism.

DUMAGUETE CITY -- The Department of Tourism (DOT) commits to assist yet another provincial destination as the local executives of Negros Oriental heralds reopening its sites to more domestic tourists.

SAN JUAN, SIQUIJOR -- Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat yesterday (24 February) traveled to Siquijor, as part of the ongoing efforts to assist in the safe reopening of tourist destinations in the new normal.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) expressed support for the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG)’s ongoing streamlining of travel procedures and requirements imposed by local government units (LGUs).

The Department of Tourism (DOT) commends the local government of El Nido for the tight entry protocols enforced to guarantee the health and safety of guests, workers and host communities in the tourist destination.

The Department of Tourism (DOT), in collaboration with the Provincial Government of Bohol, announced its online travel fair, Balik sa Bohol: Bohol Online Sale, which will run from February 21 to March 14, 2021. The island-wide travel sale will offer discounts of up to 70% off on accommodations, dining, and tour services.

Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat announced today (February 17) the formal reopening of the historic walled city of Intramuros in the new normal.

Relaxed health protocols that are standard across tourism destinations and personalized packages will encourage more Filipinos to travel locally.

The Department of Tourism (DOT), after repeated warnings against tourists who falsify their COVID tests to enter Boracay, has filed charges against the six (6) Manila-based errant tourists who were nabbed in January 2021 for Falsification of Public Documents. Marc Judicpa of the DOT Region VI-Boracay Field and Compliance Monitoring Office (BFCMO) filed the complaint.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) expressed optimism for tourism’s speedy recovery with the decision of the Inter-Agency Task Force on the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID) to reclassify industries for the continued reopening of the economy.

LAGUNA -- The Department of Tourism (DOT) elevates cultural tourism and ecotourism in the new normal as these will heighten domestic travel in the province amidst the pandemic.

The Department of Tourism - National Capital Region (DOT-NCR) is returning with the first installment of its Leadership Excellence Series (LES) featuring a 3600 virtual learning experience. The hybrid training program inspired by the world-renowned TEDTalks will be brought to life from the traditional webinar format through 3D and greenscreen technology and is happening at the Okada Manila on February 11, 2021, from 2:00 P.M.- 4:00 P.M via Zoom and simulcast over DOT-NCR’s social media channels @TourismMNL on Facebook and Twitter, and Tourism MNL on Youtube.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) lauds COVID Task Force Chief, Secretary Carlito Galvez for granting the DOT’s request to include tourism frontline service personnel in the Priority Group of the country’s vaccination program against the coronavirus disease.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) announced today that Baguio hotels can resume receiving domestic tourists even under General Community Quarantine (GCQ). This, after the Inter-Agency Task Force on the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID) passed Resolution No. 98 dated 04 February 2021, which granted the request of Baguio City to resume hotel operations in consideration of the huge number of confirmed bookings for the month of February.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) lauds recent developments to ensure Southeast Asia’s competitiveness as a single tourism destination and to bolster the recovery of tourism in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat and Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Secretary Silvestre H. Bello III on Tuesday (February 03) signed the DOT-DOLE Joint Memorandum Circular (JMC) No. 2021-001 (Amended Implementing Guidelines on Providing Financial Assistance and Cash-For-Work Program for Displaced Workers in the Tourism Sector) which amends the former JMC to further expand the coverage of beneficiaries to include Local Government-Licensed Tourism Support Service (TSS) enterprises, providers and associations of providers.

In light of the recent case of six (6) tourists entering Boracay with fake RT-PCR test results, three (3) of whom were revealed to be positive for COVID-19, the Department of Tourism (DOT) appeals to travelers to stop forging and faking travel documents, else face fines and proper criminal charges from the local government units (LGU), which may include the penalty of imprisonment.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) reminds travelers that for most areas, especially for Boracay Island, a negative Reverse Transcription Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR) test result is still a requirement before entry.

SAN PABLO, LAGUNA -- The development of green corridors play an important role in maintaining regional biodiversity, improving environmental quality, offering economic resilience opportunities, protecting heritage and culture, and supporting the jumpstart of the economy to restart tourism activities in the new normal.

SAN PABLO, LAGUNA -- The Department of Tourism (DOT) pledges to continuously promote Laguna as a fun, safe, and sustainable tourist destination with the help of the local government units (LGUs) and the private sector in the province.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) welcomes the new protocols for arriving passengers contained in the Inter-Agency Task Force on the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID) Resolution No. 97 dated 28 January 2021, following the body’s decision to lift the travel ban on passengers coming from countries with reported cases of the new Covid variant.

The DOT Cordillera Administrative Region (DOT-CAR) is currently investigating the reported party at a DOT-accredited accommodation establishment in Baguio City. A Notice to Explain has already been issued to the establishment.

Manila - The Department of Tourism (DOT) officially welcomed on Monday (25 January) Joy Nostalg Hotel & Suites Manila and Grand Hyatt Hotel as the first two recipients of the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) Safe Travels Stamp issued through the DOT.

BACOLOD CITY - After the successful reopening of Boracay Island to local tourists in October 2020, the Department of Tourism (DOT) is now in talks with local government officials and tourism stakeholders of Negros Occidental to explore the reopening of the province to more domestic tourists.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) is saddened by the news of the management decision to temporarily close the operations starting February 1, 2021 of Makati Shangri-la Hotel.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) in partnership with the Slow Food Negros Community, Negros Museum, and Provincial Government of Negros Occidental, on Tuesday (January 19), launched an 82-page cookbook entitled “Negrense Heritage Cooking”.

The Department of Tourism (DOT), in its Resolution dated 14 January 2021, finds the City Garden Grand Hotel (CGGH) in Makati City liable for the offense of gross and evident bad faith in dealing with clients/fraudulent solicitation of business or making any false, deceptive, or misleading claims or statements for the purpose of soliciting business from clients under Section 13.2 (c) of DOT Memorandum Circular No. 2018-03.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) celebrates anew with the world as White Beach, Boracay and El Nido, Palawan place 2nd and 9th, respectively, in Condé Nast’s Traveler's 25 Best Island Beaches in the World: 2020 Readers' Choice Awards list.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) reiterates that there are only fifteen (15) accredited accommodation establishments (AEs) in Metro Manila that operate as staycation hotels as of 05 January 2021

The Department of Tourism (DOT) throws its full support for the implementation of more stringent entry protocols in view of the confirmed new COVID-19 variant.

Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat has cautioned DOT-accredited hotels currently used as quarantine hotels to refrain from accepting guests for staycation purposes.

MANILA, Philippines – In a bid to further expand access to affordable RT-PCR (Real-Time Reverse Transcription Polymerase Chain Reaction) test in time for New Year domestic travels, the Department of Tourism (DOT) through the Tourism Promotions Board (TPB) Philippines, inks a Memorandum of Agreement with the Philippine Children's Medical Center (PCMC) on December 28, 2020.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) has launched the Balikan Ang Pilipinas campaign to encourage Balikbayans to travel to the Philippines this season and visit the country's sites and destinations with their loved ones.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) throws its unequivocal support to the decision of President Rodrigo Duterte to temporarily suspend all flights from the United Kingdom (UK) starting Thursday, December 24, 2020 until December 31, 2020.

Baguio City – Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat announced that about 27,000 qualified displaced tourism workers in the Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR) have been endorsed by the DOT to receive the P5,000.00 cash assistance under the DOT-DOLE Joint Memorandum Circular No. 2020-001.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) has slated two engagement meetings with local tourism stakeholders on the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC)'s Safe Travels Stamp and its step-by-step application procedure and requirements next week, December 21.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) sets forth to satisfy holiday cravings for Filipino cuisine through its fourth installment of the KAIN NA! Food and Travel Festival happening from December 17 to 20, 2020.

To usher in the Domestic Tourism Campaign in this holiday season, the Department of Tourism (DOT) and the Tourism Promotions Board (TPB) Philippines, launched “Pasko Na!”, an Audio Video Presentation (AVP) promoting traditional Filipino Christmas practices through Ryan Cayabyab’s original composition that spreads positivity and holiday cheer while aptly reminding of health and safety protocols.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) lauds local government units (LGUs) for their efforts in reopening safe tourist destinations all over the country in answer to the increasing interest in travel and tour activities.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) has collaborated with the Philippine Center for Environmental Protection and Sustainable Development, Inc. (PCEPSDI) in holding a webinar training program for the hospitality sector to reduce single-use plastics while keeping in mind health and safety protocols.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) through its partner, the Makati Medical Center Foundation Inc. (MakatiMed Foundation) received strong support for its pandemic response and security initiatives in local tourism destinations in light of the current coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.

The Department of Tourism (DOT), through the Tourism Promotions Board (TPB), takes a step further in promoting Manila’s cultural heritage sites, collaborating with The Manila Heritage Trail and Manila Heritage Alliance to bring a free virtual concert titled “Hinahanap-Hanap Kita Manila” bannering the music of iconic band Hotdog to performed by various OPM artists.

Mabini, Batangas -- Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat on Wednesday (Dec. 9), expressed support for the continued development of dive tourism in Anilao, otherwise known as the birthplace of scuba diving in the Philippines.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) has already launched an investigation into the matter, and after due notice and hearing, will mete the proper administrative sanctions to the resort.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) condemns yet another reckless social gathering organized at a tourism establishment, this time at the Blue Coral Beach Resorts Inc. in Barangay Laiya, San Juan, Batangas on Monday, December 7.

The Department of Tourism (DOT), as the co-vice chair of the Boracay Inter-Agency Task Force (BIATF), condemns the tourists from Luzon who counterfeited COVID-19 test results upon entry in the island on Monday (Dec. 7).

The Department of Tourism (DOT) reaches out to tourism workers who were affected by the closure of establishments or those which scaled down operations, to immediately avail of the expanded financial assistance as part of the Bayanihan to Recover as One Act interventions to address the pandemic’s impact on Philippine tourism.

MANILA— The Department of Tourism (DOT) welcomes the decision of the Inter-Agency Task Force on the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) through the ratification of IATF Resolution No. 87 on December 03, 2020, to allow some types of indoor business meetings in areas under General Community Quarantine (GCQ).

BORACAY - Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Bernadette Romulo Puyat in today’s Boracay Inter-Agency Task Force (BIATF) Meeting in the island, hammered in the importance of strictly enforcing health and safety protocols to raise visitor confidence. “We cannot stress fully enough the importance of showing our seriousness in carrying out our protocols and guidelines. Our local leadership is key in bringing forward our improved image. Furthermore, it is our wish to make more affordable RT-PCR tests to encourage more visits.”

MANILA (December 1, 2020) -- The Department of Tourism (DOT), in collaboration with Guide to the Philippines and the Asian Institute of Management (AIM)-Dr. Andrew L. Tan Center launched a follow-up survey on Philippine Travelers' sentiments in the new normal.

The Department of Tourism supports Coron, Palawan’s decision to ease its travel restrictions starting December 1, 2020, allowing local tourists from ages 15 to 65 years old to enter the island under a test-before-travel policy.

The Philippines’ dive sites and Intramuros once again bagged accolades at the 27th World Travel Awards. The award-giving body recognized the Philippines as the World's Leading Dive Destination and Intramuros as the World's Leading Tourist Attraction in 2020.

Now that the Philippines has reopened several tourist destinations after many months of closure, it’s time to show the country how to smile again. The DOT’s latest video, following the “Noypi” tribute to medical frontliners, brings us back to familiar, yet slightly different territory: tourism in the new normal.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) welcomes the ratification of the Inter-Agency Task Force on the Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) Resolution No. 85 which includes the provision on allowing balikbayans’ entry to the Philippines.

The Department of Tourism (DOT), as co-vice chair of the Boracay Inter-Agency Task Force (BIATF) slams the irresponsible mass gathering at the Casa de Arte, Sitio Cagban, Barangay Manoc-Mano in Boracay recently.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) touts cultural tourism in Baguio as it remains optimistic that initiatives such as the Ibagíw Festival will sustain the treasured traditions and art forms of the city.

ILOCOS SUR – Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat was among the first guests of Ilocos Sur as the province reopened to visitors, this time including tourists from Metro Manila.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) welcomes and supports the reopening of another premiere destination- Siargao Island.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) is grateful to the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) under the leadership of Senator Richard J. Gordon for the initiative to reduce the Reverse Transcription -Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR) testing price to PHP 3,300.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) commends the City Government of Baguio, Baguio Arts and Crafts Collective, Inc., UP Baguio, DOT-CAR and the city government for the successful launch of Ibagiw 2020. The third edition of the month-long creative festival kicked off with a grand opening on November 6, 2020 at the Baguio Convention Center and was also livestreamed on Facebook.

More than 7,200 hotels, resorts and other accommodation establishments (AEs) have been authorized by the Department of Tourism (DOT) to operate under different quarantine classifications and cater to different types of travelers, depending on their location and purpose.

MANILA – Banking on tourism as a key economic driver, the Department of Tourism (DOT) and Nissan Philippines have embarked on a road trip geared towards promoting safe and responsible land traveling to boost domestic tourism.

To upgrade tourism education and skills training in the country, the Department of Tourism (DOT) has closed ranks with the Department of Education (DepEd), Commission on Higher Education (CHED), Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), and the Tourism Industry Board Foundation, Inc. (TIBFI).

The Department of Tourism (DOT) welcomes President Rodrigo Roa Duterte’s signing of Executive Order (EO) 118, today, November 4, directing the Department of Health (DOH), in coordination with the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), to ensure the accessibility and affordability of COVID-19 tests and test kits for all.

The 27th World Travel Awards recognized the Philippines as Asia's leading beach destination and Asia’s leading dive destination in 2020. The award-giving body also declared the Philippine Department of Tourism as this year’s leading tourist board in Asia, besting 11 nominated countries.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) invites foodies to embark on "Food Trips" with the second leg of its virtual KAIN NA! Food and Travel Festival 2020 from November 3 to 6, 2020.

Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat and Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Secretary Silvestre H. Bello III on Friday (October 30) signed the DOT-DOLE Joint Memorandum Circular (JMC) No. 2020-001, which contains specific guidelines for the provision of cash assistance and cash-for-work program for tourism workers that were displaced due to the ongoing pandemic.

Manila, Philippines - The Department of Tourism (DOT) and the Tourism Promotions Board (TPB) Philippines launched Travel Philippines, the country’s official travel companion, today, 30 October 2020. The app provides users access to the latest travel advisories and safety guidelines in various destinations that have reopened to tourism. The easy-to-use platform allows users to create itineraries for their future trips, find up-to-date information on their favorite tourist attractions, and securely store digital copies of travel documents.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) celebrates the news that two of our prime destinations – Palawan and Boracay, have made it to Big 7 Travel’s list of the 50 Most Beautiful Places in the World (https://bigseventravel.com/2020/10/50-most-beautiful-places-in-the-world/), ranking 8th and 18th, respectively.

MANILA – The well-received online learning event dubbed the “Leadership Excellence Series (LES) 2020” is returning once again this October as it targets to rebuild consumer confidence and redefine standards for the Filipino brand of service.

Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat urged micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) to avail of the CARES for Tourism Rehabilitation and Vitalization of Enterprises and Livelihood (CARES for TRAVEL) Program to help them sustain their businesses and keep their workers amid the on-going pandemic.

Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat appeals for a price cap on the real-time Reverse Transcription-Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR) and Antigen tests for COVID-19 to enhance tourism revival, as the Inter-Agency Task Force on the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) relaxes travel restrictions in areas under General Community Quarantine (GCQ).

The Department of Tourism (DOT) welcomes the decision of the Municipal Government of El Nido to ease its travel restrictions starting October 30, allowing tourists to enter the island under a test-before-travel policy.

The Board of Trustees of the Philippine Retirement Agency (PRA), an attached agency of the Department of Tourism (DOT), has directed the PRA to suspend the issuance of the Special Retirees Residence Visa (SRRV) pending the review and amendments of the policies on age and visa deposit requirements.

Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat announced today that the DOT has been given the authority, by the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID), to determine the allowable operational capacity (up to 100%) for hotels, including staycation hotels, in areas classified under a modified community quarantine (MGCQ) and general community quarantine (GCQ).

ILOCOS NORTE – Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat announced that the Ridge and Reef Corridor heralds another milestone in the country’s bid to spur domestic tourism recovery.

The DOT welcomes the news that the province of Ilocos Sur will open to Luzon residents on November 15 once all systems and health and safety measures are in place.

BAGUIO CITY – The Department of Tourism (DOT) welcomes the decision of the local government unit (LGU) of Baguio City to open its doors to guests from Luzon, particularly the National Capital Region (NCR) and Regions 2 and 3, starting on October 22, 2020, noting that the anticipated influx of tourists will generate tourism activities that will spur a swifter recovery of the industry.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) welcomes the amended guidelines from the Inter-Agency Task Force on the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EIMD) regarding the more liberal interzonal and intrazonal movement of persons traveling between destinations under general community quarantine (GCQ) and modified general community quarantine (MGCQ).

Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat issued a reminder to “staycation hotels,” to adhere to the guidelines and protocols set by the Department of Tourism (DOT) and ensure a memorable and safe staycation of guests taking a break from months of quarantine.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) calls on divers to dust off their masks, fins, snorkels, regulators, and other gear as popular dive sites in Batangas prepare to welcome tourists.

Bring your own gear and use a defog solution for your mask.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) and the Small Business Corporation (SB Corp) today (October 12) signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) to finalize the CARES for Tourism Rehabilitation and Vitalization of Enterprises and Livelihood ( TRAVEL) program that will extend loan assistance to micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) from the tourism industry.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) will provide a total of Php 1.6 million funding to Boracay to cover the cost of reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) testing for the island’s tourism workers, as it expects more local tourist arrivals in the coming months.

Ilocos Norte, which is famous for a variety of attractions, including panoramic ocean views, a breathtaking wind farm, baroque architecture, and sand dunes adventure, is reopening its doors to more tourists from the rest of Luzon on October 15.

Cebu and Visayas Islands have been named Top Island in Asia, leading three other Philippine islands in the top ten of the Conde Naste Traveler's (CNT) 2020 Readers' Choice Awards.

Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat welcomes the adoption of the Antigen Testing as a way to determine if Baguio City's visitors are COVID-19 free.

The Commission on Audit (COA) Renders an “Unqualified Opinion” over the Department of Tourism's Financial Statements as of December 31, 2019.

BORACAY — The reopening of Boracay, the Philippines’ top destination, to new market sources signals the safe and gradual revival of the country’s tourism industry amid the pandemic, Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat said Thursday (Oct. 1).

Tourism enterprises can now apply online for accreditation with the Department of Tourism (DOT) with the launch of its Online Accreditation System.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) has issued strict guidelines for “staycations” as part of the government efforts to re-start the economy through tourism.

On behalf of the Philippines Department of Tourism, let me warmly wish everyone a happy and meaningful World Tourism Day. This year’s theme, “Tourism and Rural Development,” is particularly relevant to our country as many of our rural areas depend on tourism but have been adversely affected by the pandemic.

PANGLAO, Bohol – Even in the most unusual ways, the travel business has to continue to keep tourism alive.

Boracay Island will further open its doors to more local tourists on October 1, thus signaling the continued resurgence of domestic tourism nationwide.

BAGUIO CITY –Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat is back in the Summer Capital of the Philippines to officially launch the city’s first online visitor management system today (September 22).

The World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) has given the Department of Tourism (DOT) a SafeTravels Stamp in recognition of its adoption of “health and hygiene global standardized protocols” that will ensure safe travel during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Domestic tourism will be the main concentration of the Department of Tourism (DOT) in rebuilding trust and confidence in the travel market for next year.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) disclosed on Thursday (Sept. 17) some details of the loan program for tourism MSMEs that is being finalized with the Small Business Corporation (SB Corp) of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI).

MANILA - A virtual ceremonial toast with customized wooden chalices marked the official start of the four-day KAIN NA! Food and Travel Festival 2020 on Tuesday (Sept. 15) with chocolate, coffee and tea taking the spotlight.

More than 10,000 jobs in the business process outsourcing (BPO) industry would be made available to displaced tourism workers nationwide this month.

Lifeguards will not be the only ones on patrol when the beaches and resorts reopen for business under the tourism industry’s “new normal.” Safety marshalls will also be on site to ensure physical distancing.

MANILA -- The Philippines, through the Department of Tourism (DOT), successfully hosted the virtual edition of the 3rd International Conference on the Association of Southeast Asian Nations Mutual Recognition Arrangement on Tourism Professionals (ASEAN MRA-TP) that is expected to largely influence the Department’s Tourism Response and Recovery Plan (TRRP), particularly its human resource component.

The Department of Tourism's food and travel festival, Kain Na!, is back and is prepared to serve exciting culinary tourism delights that everyone can enjoy online and in the comfort of their homes from September 15-18.

It’s official—the Philippine International Dive Expo (PHIDEX) is back for its 2nd edition through a digital platform from October 9 to 11, 2020.

The Department of Tourism (DOT), consistent with the President’s direction, has been engaging with the local governments, other national government agencies and local tourism stakeholders for the gradual reopening of the sector while underscoring the strict compliance of health and safety protocols.

TOKYO – The Philippines received the award as the Best Overseas Diving Area in the Marine Diving Awards 2020 held recently in Tokyo.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) celebrates the mention of multiple Philippine dive sites in the Lonely Planet's article entitled *quot;6 national parks around the world with surprisingly spectacular diving".

BAGUIO CITY – The Department of Tourism (DOT) threw its full support behind the Ridge to Reef Corridor Plan, one of the key strategies being explored to ensure Baguio City's gradual and safe reopening to tourists from nearby provinces within the year.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) expresses its deep gratitude to the Bicameral Conference Committee for approving the allocation of 10 billion pesos for the tourism industry under the Bayanihan To Recover As One or the Bayanihan 2 Bill. The recognition of the tourism sector by the Senate and House of Representatives, in the Bayanihan Act 2 measures, ensures the survival of our MSMEs since 99.9 percent of the 144,640 establishments in accommodation and food service activities are considered micro, small and medium, according to 2018 data from the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA).

Online shoppers can now enjoy varied Philippine flavors, quality–sealed fresh and processed food selections, and other essentials all under one platform which provides a seamless shopping experience for the customer.

Panglao, BOHOL – Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo–Puyat assured the officials and tourism players of Bohol on Friday that reopening the island province to tourism would not be pursued at the expense of public health and safety.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) is pulling out all the stops to ensure that health and safety measures are in place in the country's tourist destinations and to reassure all stakeholders of government support as the industry prepares to slowly reopen.

It's a new world out there and we have to think out of the box if we want to go back to business as usual.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) expresses optimism for the recovery of the tourism industry, following the Senate approval of the Senate Bill 1564 or the Bayanihan To Recover As One Act on its third and final reading Tuesday (July 28)..

Boracay Island is now open to young and senior tourists from the Western Visayas region.

Meetings, conventions and exhibitions can be held only in areas under the modified general community quarantine (MGCQ) and only at 50 percent capacity, according to the guidelines set by the Department of Tourism (DOT).

The Department of Tourism (DOT) will team up with the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) to promote farm tourism and help the country's tourism industry recover from the COVID–19 pandemic.

Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo–Puyat has given the directive for schools to continue online English as a Second Language (ESL) programs to maintain the country's position as a leading ESL destination.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) today celebrates the hailing of Palawan as it reclaims the Best Island in the World title by renowned travel publication, Travel + Leisure.

Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo–Puyat said that more restaurants in Metro Manila are seeking accreditation with the Department of Tourism (DOT).

Dairy, fresh fruits, vegetables and other daily essentials will soon be delivered to your doorsteps by GrabExpress from 40 small farmers and MSMEs participating under the Department of Tourism's (DOT) Philippine Harvest online trade fair.

EL NIDO, PALAWAN -- Eyeing tourism recovery in the reopening of more destinations, Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat today checked the readiness of one of the Philippines' favorite destinations – Palawan.

Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat and Trade and Industry Secretary Ramon M. Lopez led the inspection of selected hotels and restaurants in the Ortigas Center on Wednesday (July 1) to check compliance with health and safety protocols under Metro Manila's General Community Quarantine (GCQ) guidelines.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) said that it anticipates the reopening of the tourism industry in concurrence with the local government units (LGU), with the easing of travel restrictions, as more places around the country transition to a modified general community quarantine (MGCQ).

Domestic travel will lead the recovery of the country's tourism industry with Filipino travelers expecting to go to destinations closer to home and spending less amid lingering health concerns caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat hailed on Friday the reactivation of the Tourist Police units, saying it would hasten the tourism industry’s recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.

The tourism industry will recover well from three months of quarantine and restore the jobs lost by millions of Filipinos dependent on the industry.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) celebrates the inclusion of Hidden Beach in El Nido, Palawan in Condé Nast Traveller's (CNT) "The 30 Best Beaches in the World" feature. The list was made in light of the pandemic, stating that "…while the world waits to find out when we can travel again, now is the time to think about a future summer holiday visiting one of the world's best beaches."

The tourism industry increased its contribution to the country's economy to almost 13 percent of the gross domestic product (GDP) last year, according to government statistics.

In line with the Department of Tourism's (DOT) priority effort to roll out its new health and safety standards as well as the Inter-Agency Task Force on the management of Emerging Infectious Disease (IATF-EID) restrictions among tourism stakeholders nationwide, the Local Government Unit (LGU) of San Juan, La Union recently conducted spot inspections among tourism stakeholders in its popular beach and surfing area and clamped down on enterprises that have violated national and local government issuances during the period of quarantine.

The Boracay Interagency Task Force (BIATF) decries the entry of a group of travelers to Boracay last June 12 that stayed up to June 14 when the island was not officially open for tourism.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) welcomes the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases' (IATF-EID) approval of the Department of Trade and Industry's (DTI) recommendation to allow the partial dine-in operations of restaurants in localities under General Community Quarantine (GCQ).

"The partnership of the public and private sector to ensure the safety and sustainability of tourism should be a model for other island destinations in the country," Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat said during the Boracay Inter-Agency Task Force BIATF meeting in Boracay on June 11, 2020.

While travel restrictions are still in place, for both domestic and foreign travel, the Philippine Department of Tourism (DOT) has been maintaining its presence online with its most recent digital campaign, “Wake Up in the Philippines” and its microsite philippines.travel/safeph for relevant updates on tourism-related sectors in the Philippines.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) has issued the New Normal Health and Safety Guidelines for Tourist Land Transport Services covering transport operators/owners, passengers, vehicles, and drivers.

The Inter–Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF–EID) further stressed the importance of the Department of Tourism (DOT) Certificate of Authority to operate for accommodation establishments (AEs) going back to business during the Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ), Modified Enhanced Community Quarantine (MECQ), and General Community Quarantine (GCQ) periods.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) has released Memorandum Circular No 2020-004 or the "New Normal Health and Safety Guidelines for DOT–Accredited Restaurants" that will cover the areas of Management; Configuration and Set–up; Employees; Customers; Service and other Procedure; Delivery; and Sanitation, Disinfection, Safety Measure, and others.

The Department of Tourism welcomes the latest tourism–related distinction received by the country, having been recently named as one of the "Rising Stars in Travel" by Forbes.com, the website of the respected American business and financial news publication.

The joint recommendations of the Department of Tourism (DOT) and Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) on health and safety protocols for restaurant dine–in operations were approved by the Inter–Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF–EID).

With the hampered travel movement brought about by the COVID–19 pandemic situation, work and play are inevitably done online. The evolving crisis and in anticipation of other challenges, the Department of Tourism (DOT) and its attached agencies are making sure that Philippine tourism remains competitive, adapts well and takes advantage of the digital revolution.

Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Bernadette Romulo–Puyat reminds tourism stakeholders, particularly hotel and resort entrepreneurs to secure a DOT Certificate of Authority to Operate before going back to business under the Modified General Community Quarantine (MGCQ).

The Philippine Department of Tourism (DOT) maintained its commitment to the Filipino Brand of Service and Hospitality, as exhibited by the agency's successful initiatives to assist a total of 36,947 stranded foreign and domestic tourists, since land, air, and sea travel restrictions were placed by the government as a precautionary measure to stop the spread of the disease.

We must make the transition to digital and online for our industry to survive.

The DOT welcomes the gradual re-opening of tourism operations in light of the varied community quarantine levels across the country, hoping to pave the eventual recovery of the Philippines' tourism industry.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) remains optimistic that the Philippines will regain the tourists' trust in the country as a safe and viable tourism destination sooner, and hasten recovery of the country's tourism industry.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) welcomes the encouraging developments towards reopening of tourist destinations and ensured that the tourism sector is ready to provide service under the post-lockdown "New Normal" scenario.

At least 84 domestic tourists stranded in Eastern Visayas since last March finally returned home with the assistance of the Department of Tourism (DOT) in joint efforts with other agencies and local government units (LGUs).

The Department of Tourism (DOT) has released the Health and Safety Guidelines Governing the Operations of Accommodation Establishments under the New Normal, indicating quite a number of significant changes in the country's frontline tourist services.

Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat expressed confidence that an imaginative Filipino gastronomy will remain a strong pillar of the country’s tourism industry under the new normal.

How will the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic crisis impact and reshape tourism, sustainability and conservation programs at the country' heritage sites under the new normal?

The Department of Tourism (DOT) commits to sustain the Filipino brand of hospitality and service to stranded tourists amid the government-enforced community quarantine brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic.

With Metro Manila now placed under modified enhanced community quarantine and the majority of the other places in the country under general community quarantine or GCQ, the DOT, together with the Inter–Agency Taskforce on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF–EID) and several local government units (LGU), are preparing for the revival and re–opening of tourism in the Philippines once our places are classified under the modified GCQ (MGCQ).

The tourism industry will recover.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) in an advisory directed hotel operators and their ancillary establishments to submit detailed documentation on their safety protocols for their food preparation services.

Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Bernadette Romulo–Puyat said the tourism industry is ready to face the reality and daunting challenges of the "new normal," referring to new standards and protocols for safe and responsible tourism that will direct its path to recovery.

A total of 155,672 employees from 4,290 tourism–related enterprises received their cash grants under the joint program of the Department of Finance (DOF), Social Security System (SSS), and Bureau of Internal Revenue, called the Small Business Wage Subsidy (SBSW) program as of May 4.

MANILA – Over 1,000 domestic tourists who were stranded in various tourist destinations in the country have returned home, mostly in Metro Manila, with the assistance of the Department of Tourism (DOT).

MANILA, Philippines – Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat reaffirmed the country's commitment to the regional tourism cooperation of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) on the road to recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.

DOT STATEMENT ON THE OPENING OF ILOCOS SUR STARTING NOV 15 – Sunday, October 18, 2020

The DOT welcomes the news that the province of Ilocos Sur will open to Luzon residents on November 15 once all systems and health and safety measures are in place. The development came upon the announcement of Ilocos Sur Governor Ryan V. Singson to open up the province following the growing interest from tourists from the National Capital Region (NCR) during the launch of the Reef and Ridge traveler corridor. The DOT also lauded Governor Singson's initiative to give back jobs to the tourism workforce from the kutcheros or carriage drivers to the waiters, the souvenir shops, to the tour guides through the slow but sure reopening of the province. Ilocos Sur first welcomed back tourists through the Ridge and Reef travel corridor with Baguio City and Ilocos Region including the provinces of La Union, Pangasinan, and Ilocos Norte. Among the famous tourist destinations in the province are the Vigan Heritage Village and Calle Crisologo, Plaza Salcedo Dancing Fountain, Bantay Bell Tower, Santa Maria Church, and Plaza Burgos. ###

Tourism Secretary Puyat scans a Quick Response (QR) code for check–in procedures as tourism establishments adapt to digitalization and new normal

Health and safety remains the top priority as tourism reopens in Palawan as discussed by Tourism Secretary Puyat, Governor Alvarez and El Nido Mayor Edna Lim (right)

Tourism Secretary Puyat meets the members of the media via a virtual press conference to discuss the destination's tourism recovery.

L–R Palawan Governor Jose Alvarez, Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo–Puyat, El Nido Mayor Edna Lim, Tourism Promotions Board COO Maria Anthonette Velasco–Allones, and Ten Knots Development Corporation COO Javier Hernandez in front of the El Nido backdrop after the site inspection.

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Marcos says Ilocos Norte will be key Philippine tourism hub

President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. on Friday said the government remains committed to strengthen the domestic tourism industry pushing for his home province Ilocos Norte as a key tourism hub in the country.

During his speech at the “Tan-ok ni Ilocano 2023: The Festival of Festivals,” Marcos said uplifting the country’s domestic tourism industry remained a top priority of his administration.

“I assure you the government’s commitment to strengthen the domestic tourism industry remains a top priority and llocos Norte will play a very large part of that. The number of visitor arrivals has recovered. It is my hope that by working together we restore Ilocos’ vibrancy tourism to pre-pandemic levels and beyond,” Marcos said.

“The darkest hours of the pandemic we pray are over and now we are ready to reclaim time and opportunities we have lost for the past few years as we now emerge stronger than ever,” he added.

He said the government remains open for “fresh and innovative” ideas that will help propel the tourism sector in the future.

“Let us hope that you will respond to this administration’s call for participation in the rewarding but challenging tasks ahead. Let our spirit be a blaze with unity and may the Almighty bless us to our journey towards a brighter and better llocos for the present and future generations,” the President said.

Marcos said this year’s festival was even more special since it was held in the newly renovated Ferdinand E. Marcos Sr. Memorial Stadium in Laoag City, Ilocos Norte.

“Named after my father, the stadium speaks well of the strength, brilliance, and resilience of every Ilocano. I’m certain that my father is now watching us proudly and to see how far we are as a people,” he said.

“I feel in my bones that we all share the same blood and patriotism that allow us to achieve these things together. On this note, my sincerest gratitude goes to all people behind the stadium rehabilitation. Indeed, this facility will become an iconic landmark that will  not only showcase a design excellence but also project our shared aspirations,” he added.

This year’s “Tan-ok ni Ilocano” or “The Greatness of Ilocano,” highlighted the 205th founding anniversary of Ilocos Norte through several performances and art forms featuring the province’s history, tradition, heritage and culture.

The President said the festival will stimulate economic activity and support Ilocano families by driving the tourism industry and sustaining local livelihoods.

He said the event will also showcase the talent and skills of the local artists and small scale local workers, adding that it will serve as a gateway to rich and dynamic culture.

“I thus encourage our next generation of Ilocano artists, be proud of your identity, and integrate our rich customs and traditions into the art that you showcase,” he said.

“Let us share to our fellow Filipinos and the rest of the world the story of our roots, upland indigenous communities, and the vibrant communities of Ilocos which mold us into what we are as a people today,” he added. —LDF, GMA Integrated News

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The Department of Health (DOH) on Tuesday inaugurated the first urgent care center in the Ilocos Region in Banna, a fourth-class municipality in the second district of Ilocos Norte, to bring healthcare services closer to communities.

Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire and Ilocos Regional Director Paula Paz Sydiongco led the launch of the Bagong Urgent Care and Ambulatory Service (BUCAS) center, which is manned by medical professionals from the Mariano Marcos Memorial Hospital and Medical Center (MMMH&MC)

The center provides comprehensive diagnostic capabilities and offers minor surgeries on weekdays and is eyed to provide an intermediate health facility aimed to bridge the gap between village health centers and higher-level hospitals.

The BUCAS Center in Banna is the 11th to open in the country and the second to operate since its soft launch last March 2024.

DOH targets to establish 28 BUCAS Centers nationwide to provide accessible and quality healthcare services to the 28 million poorest Filipinos by the year 2028.

Instead of traveling for two hours and spending about PHP2,000 for transportation to reach the MMMH&MC, which is often crowded by patients from Northern Luzon, Banna town and those from nearby villages of Nueva Era, Pinili, and Marcos, patients no longer have to travel far and wait for long queues to avail of simple diagnostic procedures and urgent healthcare services.

“This is a remarkable milestone in our municipality of Banna. The BUCAS program will empower our community with the tools and resources needed to live healthier and more fulfilling lives,” Banna Mayor Mary Chrislyn Abadilla said.

During the event, a memorandum of agreement was signed for the construction of a surgical clinic and BUCAS facility expansion building to provide a complete set of specialist treatment and ancillary services like mammogram, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), computed tomography (CT) scan, and ultrasound.

“Thank you for bringing your expertise closer to us. I hope this will continue so that we will no longer have to go far in times of need,” Banna resident Carolyn Julian said. (PNA)

Philippines, Japan To Hold Joint Research On Water Concerns

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Moosic, PA – Today, Governor Josh Shapiro, Lieutenant Governor Austin Davis, and Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) Secretary Rick Siger joined statewide tourism leaders at PNC Field to unveil Pennsylvania’s new state tourism brand and summer travel marketing campaign to encourage more people to travel across and visit the Commonwealth – Pennsylvania: The Great American Getaway .

Pennsylvania is a premier weekend getaway destination within close driving proximity to major hubs along the East Coast, including New York City, Baltimore, and Washington DC. Pennsylvania’s main streets and small towns, world class restaurants and bars, renowned historical sites, thrilling outdoor recreation, and top tier events and sports can be experienced in a single weekend by nearly 72 million people who live within a four-hour drive of thousands of getaways and experiences.

“Here in Pennsylvania, we have it all – from top tier sports and events, award-winning restaurants, incredible hikes and state parks, and the most important historic sites in the country that tell the story of our shared history. More people deserve the chance to come here and experience the magic of Pennsylvania for themselves,” said Governor Josh Shapiro. “72 million people live within a four-hour drive of Pennsylvania – and once you’re here, you’ll find there’s something for every member of the family. Pennsylvania is the Great American Getaway, and my Administration is making tourism a top priority for the first time in more than a decade – it is a central part of our economic development strategy and my new budget calls for an $18 million increase for tourism and business marketing. This new brand and funding will help us grow small businesses, support our communities, and create opportunity for more Pennsylvanians.”

Following the announcement, Governor Shapiro and the First Family will kick off a week-long RV tour ahead of Memorial Day Weekend, embarking on their own Great American Getaway to promote the new brand and Pennsylvania’s tourism industry all across the Commonwealth. The Shapiro Family will highlight Pennsylvania’s world-class urban spaces, outdoor adventure experiences, charming small towns, diverse culinary experiences, unique events and festivals, historic hotels, and iconic historical attractions across 50 stops and 14 counties over the next six days.

Tourism is a key priority within the Governor’s economic development strategy. A new report unveiled by the Pennsylvania Tourism Office in March shows Pennsylvania’s tourism industry generated $76.7 billion in economic impact, supported 486,871 jobs, contributed $4.7 billion in state and local taxes, and welcomed 192.4 million visitors in 2022. Visitor spending – which supports jobs, income, and business sales – generated $9.6 billion in government revenues. Overnight visitor spending increased by $4.8 billion, with more than 66 million trips resulting in $28 billion in spending.

“Pennsylvania is home to thousands of incredible destinations. From our hospitality and entertainment sites to our state parks and outdoor recreation businesses, there are incredible tourism opportunities for travelers to pursue their passion, support good-paying jobs, and spend time with loved ones,” said Lieutenant Governor Austin Davis. “Now that the Second Lady and I have started a family, we can’t wait to show our daughter all that Pennsylvania has to offer and make new lifelong memories together on our own Great American Getaway.”

Tourism is one of the largest and most important industries in Pennsylvania, generating over $76 billion a year and supporting more than 486,000 jobs across the Commonwealth. The Governor’s proposed 2024-25 budget includes an $18 million increase to boost Pennsylvania’s tourism industry and business marketing efforts across the Commonwealth.

“Tourism is a powerful engine that drives our state’s economy and benefits our communities, small businesses, and hundreds of thousands of Pennsylvanians across the Commonwealth every day,” said DCED Secretary Rick Siger. “The Governor’s investment in one of our state’s most important industries and the launch of this new brand and marketing campaign will give a needed boost to tourism promotion and the industry ahead of the busy summer travel season and for years to come.”

The Governor launched the new tourism brand in Lackawanna County while at PNC Field, home of the New York Yankees’ Minor League Baseball affiliate, the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders – highlighting Pennsylvania’s exciting sports culture and a region with some of the top outdoor recreation attractions in the Commonwealth.

“On behalf of the RailRiders, we are honored to host Governor Shapiro and all of you today to kickoff of a program that promotes travel & tourism across the Commonwealth,” said Katie Beekman, General Manager of the Scranton Wilkes-Barre RailRiders. “Support and promotion of our venue by both local and statewide visitors’ programs attract new faces to PNC field and offer us the opportunity to showcase a first-class facility that hosts not only minor league baseball, but community events, a roster of high school and collegiate games, as well as national touring artists and performers. Thanks to Governor Shapiro’s significant investment in Pennsylvania’s tourism industry, venues like ours continue will to thrive and create jobs within our local communities.”

To promote the new brand, VISIT PA launched a summer marketing campaign – titled “Your Great American Getaway Starts Here” – that runs late May through August in regional markets, including New York City, Washington DC, Cleveland, Toronto, and statewide across Pennsylvania. A layered media mix of high-impact outdoor, multiscreen video, and targeted digital media will create awareness and drive traffic to the rebranded visitPA.com, where new two- and three-day weekend road trip itineraries are available for every traveler.

The Great American Getaway campaign brand launched today with a new ad video narrated by Pennsylvania native and Broad City star Abbi Jacobson, who will be the voice of the campaign’s summer ads. The Great American Getaway branding materials can be found on the updated VisitPA.com website. Travelers will also interact with the new brand at sports games, concerts, festivals, and transit stations across Pennsylvania and New York throughout the summer.

From our hospitality and entertainment industries to our state parks, trails, and outdoor recreation businesses – tourism is a powerful economic engine, benefitting nearly every corner of our state and giving Pennsylvanians more opportunities to pursue their passion, support their families, and succeed.

“Pennsylvania’s tourism and hospitality industry is thrilled to see Governor Shapiro’s commitment to tourism, not just in word but in action. His proposed investment in this year’s fiscal year budget will be a game changer for the tourism industry and our members – the nearly 27,000 eating and drinking and 1,700 lodging establishments across Pennsylvania – along with tens of thousands of businesses that benefit from PA’s tourism activity,” said Joe Massaro, president and CEO of the Pennsylvania Restaurant and Lodging Association. “We are all excited to welcome the Governor and his family into our communities and businesses as they travel across Pennsylvania on their epic road trip. There truly is no better endorsement than the Governor and his family traveling the state, sharing their experiences and their passion for all things Pennsylvania.”

“We are honored that Governor Shapiro chose NEPA to launch this new brand and summer advertising campaign. These initiatives, along with the investment in Pennsylvania’s tourism industry included in the Governor’s budget will drive visitors and economic growth for all regions of the state,” said Curt Camoni, Lackawanna County Visitors Bureau Executive Director. “We hope to welcome new travelers to Lackawanna County this summer as they enjoy their Great American Getaway.”

“Pennsylvania’s new branding is as diverse as our Commonwealth,” said Representative Donna Oberlander, Republican Chairman of the Tourism and Economic and Recreational Development Committee. “I am pleased to see a campaign that embraces all of what Pennsylvania has to offer, from history to outdoor recreational opportunities to our vast network of thriving small businesses this campaign will offer something for everyone including in-state travelers who are discovering hidden new gems or out- of-state travelers who will get to see Pennsylvania’s uniqueness for the first time.”

Governor Shapiro’s Economic Development Strategy – the first of its kind in nearly two decades – prioritizes the tourism industry and adopts a new marketing strategy to showcase all that the Commonwealth has to offer. Led by DCED’s Tourism and Business Marketing offices, the new marketing strategy will showcase how the Commonwealth’s iconic attractions to hidden gems support the state’s economy and creates jobs for local businesses — all while improving residents’ quality of life.

Need inspiration for your next Great American Getaway in Pennsylvania? Find top recommendations by city here and become a fan on Facebook , keep up with us on Instagram , share pins on Pinterest , follow us on X (formerly Twitter) and TikTok , watch us on YouTube , or listen to us on Spotify .

For more information about the Department of Community and Economic Development, visit the DCED website , and be sure to stay up-to-date with all of our agency news on Facebook , X , and LinkedIn .

MEDIA CONTACT: Governor’s Office, [email protected] , 717.783.1116 Penny Ickes, DCED, [email protected]

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Minnesota Timberwolves fans have picked up on a phrase uttered by their star, and are hardly put off by its mild vulgarity.

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By Victor Mather

Dearest Times readers:

The following article contains a three-letter word beginning with an A that is considered vulgar. We would avoid the term, but it doesn’t seem possible. Profoundest apologies in advance.

OK, deep breath:

“Bring ya ass.”

In the last day or so, basketball fans and the people of the Minneapolis-St. Paul area in general have been saying it. That includes the city’s basketball star, who launched it, the local tourism council, and many fans gleeful about a great victory.

It started with the win: In a do-or-die Game 7, the Minnesota Timberwolves rallied from 20 points down to defeat the defending champion Denver Nuggets, 98-90.

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The impromptu remark, with a more informal pronunciation and spelling of “you,” suddenly became a meme and then something more.

Minnesotans began asking Gov. Tim Walz to make it the state’s tourism slogan. He responded on social media with the eyes emoji, apparently implying a willingness to look at the idea.

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Photoshop virtuosos got to work adding the phrase to the state seal and various area landmarks. Fans suggested the line was the epitome of memorable Minnesota sports sayings, though there was still strong support for a 2005 utterance by Randy Moss of the Vikings who, when asked how he would pay a $10,000 fine, replied, “straight cash, homie.”

On the postgame broadcast, Barkley asked Edwards for a list of good restaurants, and some Minnesotans began recommending places people could bring their, uh, posterior regions for the Western Conference finals against the Dallas Mavericks beginning Wednesday in Minneapolis.

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Minneapolis-St. Paul is not the first region to embrace a silly slogan, or one to annoy grammar scolds. New Orleans Saints fans are fond of saying “Who dat?” The 1973 Mets celebrated an unlikely run with the inspirational slogan “Ya gotta believe” (they lost in the World Series). The 2008 Phillies asked “Why can’t us?” (they did win).

Mississippi State took a snide insult for their hometown of Starkville and embraced it, dubbing the city “Stark Vegas.”

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New York and Los Angeles are “cool,” he said. “But they ain’t better than Minnesota.”

Victor Mather , who has been a reporter and editor at The Times for 25 years, covers sports and breaking news. More about Victor Mather

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Bringing Back Reebok: Shaquille O’Neal pushed to be in charge of the company’s return to the hypercompetitive world of basketball sneakers. The Hall of Famer understands the stakes .

The Capital of Women’s Soccer: The success of Barcelona Femení has made the Spanish city, and the broader region of Catalonia, a laboratory for finding out what happens when the women’s game has prominence similar to the men’s .

A Minnesota Rallying Cry:  Fans of the Minnesota Timberwolves have picked up on a phrase  uttered by the team’s star, Anthony Edwards, and are hardly put off by its mild vulgarity.

A Beloved Manager:  A coach’s soccer legacy is often reduced to titles and trophies. In Liverpool, Jürgen Klopp will endure in murals, music and shared memories .

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DOT, DSWD distributes aid to tourism workers in Davao Oriental

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Rudolph Ian Alama

  • by Rudolph Ian Alama
  • May. 29, 2024 2:19 pm in News

DAVAO CITY—The Department of Tourism led by Sec. Christina Garcia Frasco and the Department of Social Welfare and Development oversaw the distribution of "Bayanihan Sa Bukas na May Pag-asa para sa Turismo" (BBMT) assistance package on Monday (May 27) at the Davao Oriental Provincial Capitol in Mati City.

BBMT is a joint initiative that aims to provide immediate support to displaced tourism stakeholders in times of crisis. It can be recalled that Davao Region was affected by Trough of the LPA (Low Pressure Area) and Shearline early this year which resulted to flooding and  landslides across the region.

The BBMT program has benefitted 1,301 displaced tourism workers from various establishments and destinations in the region, which provided training and support to help them recover. Specifically targeting municipalities in Davao Oriental and Davao de Oro, the aid has reached workers in different roles such as resort staff, lifeguards, and other service providers.

“Our tourism workers are the heart and soul of Philippine tourism, tungod ninyo naay kasing-kasing ang turismo sa Pilipinas, mao na naa mi kaninyo karon, alang sa pagpahibawo kaninyo na dili lamang kita sa panahon sa paglipay magkauban kundi ang importante sa tanan sa panahon sa pagkalisod,” Sec. Frasco said.

(Because of you the tourism in the Philippines has a heart that is why we are here with you to let you know that we are not just with you during times of happiness but importantly during times of hardship.)

For the DOT emergency cash transfer payout, the 725 beneficiaries in Davao Oriental and 41 recipients in Davao del Norte received P9,960 each. While the 514 beneficiaries in Davao de Oro got P4,980 each. The DOT emergency cash transfer payout has 1,283 beneficiaries with P10.2 million allocated to them for the cash assistance.

ilocos region tourism slogan

Davao Oriental Governor Niño Sotero Uy said the calamities in Davao Oriental hindered the recovery efforts in the province as they were bouncing back from the pandemic.

“However as we were making strides towards economic recovery, we were once again faced with challenges brought about by natural and manmade disasters. Despite all of this challenges we have exhausted all of our efforts to provide initial aid to affected families. That is why we have conducted relief distribution to the 193 barangays in the province to ensure that all of our families could have a meal at their table during this hardships,” Governor Uy said in his speech.

The Governor thanked the national government through the DSWD and the DOT for these interventions in assisting the affected sectors in the province.

“Your support to our province is a lifeline for all of us,” the Governor said.

DSWD Secretary Rex Gatchalian said the initiative is a whole-of-government approach with agencies working together to help the people in the region recover.

“Hindi lang isang departamento ang kikilos kundi dalawang departamento (not just one department working but two departments)  in this case ang Department of Tourism at Department of Social Welfare and Development,” Sec. Gatchalian said.

The DSWD Secretary also emphasized that tourism workers should also be included as beneficiaries of government assistance citing their role in the Philippine economy.

“Dahil ang mga tourism workers natin ang propeller hindi lang ng Davao Oriental kundi ng national economy natin and natutuwa kami na magiging partner na namin ang DOT, so everytime magkakaroon ng natural disasters, nag-usap kami ni Secretrary Frasco gagamitin natin itong template,” Sec. Gatchalian said.

(Because our tourism workers are our propellers not just for Davao Oriental but the national economy and we are glad that the DOT will be our partner, so everytime a natural disaster would occur, as we’ve discussed with Secretary Frasco, we will use this as a template.) (RVC/RGA/PIA11)

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COMMENTS

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