Vigan surfing meets Spanish colonial architecture.
Where is Vigan surfing?
Vigan is the capital city of the Ilocos Sur province and is found in the Ilocos Region or Region 1.
It is situated on the north western coastline of Luzon and has it’s western boundary as the South China Sea. It is about 408 kilometres north of Manila, 130 kilometres north of San Fernando, La Union and about 80 kilometres south of Laoag in Ilocos Norte.
For more information on Ilocos Sur have a look here.
How do I get to Vigan?
You can either fly or drive to Vigan.
From Manila there are a number of buses that travel to Vigan and return or you can catch the bus to Laoag and jump off at Vigan. The trip will take you all of seven hours maybe more. Depending on your time constraints, a good alternative would be to drop in at San Fernando, La Union or further north at Badoc Island to break up the journey and catch some waves there.
From Vigan you can catch buses back to Manila or elsewhere including Baguio, Laoag, La Union and just about anywhere else in Luzon.
Flights from Manila to Laoag are serviced three times a week from Manila and will take you about an hour. From Laoag you can catch a bus or hire a mini van to take you the eighty kilometres to Vigan.
Have a look here for more information on air travel in the Philippines.
Vigan is serviced by numerous jeepney’s and trikes. Also a must do is to take a ride on the traditional Calesas which are the horse drawn cart, which is kind of unique in Vigan and fits in with Vigan’s architectural Spanish roots.
As is typical with surfing in the Philippines, the consistency and quality is extremely fickle. On it’s day you will not be disappointed in fact you will not have to share the waves with too many others.
Vigan city has a lot to offer if the surf is not working or dare I say it if you need a break from the crowd less breaks. Vigan city is the only colonial town in the Philippines, it’s culture and heritage is laid before you around every corner, with Spanish architecture represented in churches, houses and government buildings. A tour of the city is a good distraction.
For those more interested in the Vigan surfing:
This is considered on of the longest rides in Vigan. It works best after a typhoon has been in action in the South China Sea and can whip up a great wave that can say from August through to about January. It is a beach break.
Nalvo, Santa Maria
Santa Maria is south of Vigan it has a great little reef break that provides consistent good waves.
There are numerous sites both north and south of Vigan, use your imagination and do a bit of exploring. A lot of the coastline can be seen from the highway. You can catch waves from Santo Domingo, Magsingal, San Juan, Cabugao and Sinait. By now you are almost at Badoc Island.
Where do I stay?
You have a lot of options available to you for Vigan accommodation. There are resorts on the coast and Pension houses both on the coast and in Vigan proper. Ask around the smaller towns you will be surprised what you may find out. Filipinos are very friendly and are always more than accommodating.