Friday, August 11, 2017

Sand Dunes Adventures at Paoay

Ilocos Norte is the farthest we've been to in the Philippines (maghintay ka lang Batanes). And like every eager first time visitor, we did almost everything touristy! But also like every thrill-seeking adventurer, we just had to do something that can turn on the rush.

Honestly, I could skip any other tourist attractions around Ilocos but not the sand dunes - the only known sand dunes in the Philippines. So despite being pressed for time (thanks to my friend, insomnia, for keeping me company at night and asleep by the day), we managed to find ways.

Our original plan was to go there before sunrise or before sunset so we can avoid the scorching heat of the sun. But since we scrapped all our plans out and did all things spontaneously, we went there after lunch. Midday. High noon. Beat that.

There are two sand dunes in Ilocos. One in La Paz and the other is in Paoay. We decided to go to Paoay just so we can visit other attractions from there, too. Although we never really got to visit other places in Paoay because... ugh... lazy.

Suba Paoay Sand Dunes

4x4 ride is deathifiying. It is an absolutely exhilarating ride. That's according to the blogs I've read and friends I've asked.

Of course, I expected A LOT. Deathifying. Buwis-buhay. Yung tipong maiiwan ang kaluluwa mo. But then, it was a bit of a let down. Sure there were really steep trails (perhaps 50-60 degrees). Sure it was a bumpy one-of-a-kind ride. Sure it was fast. But it wasn't deathifying - not even close. BUT despite all those unmet expectations, we really really enjoyed it! We had fun and this was the highlight of our entire Ilocandia trip.
Paoay Sand Dunes

We paid Php 2,500 for an hour of 4x4 ride which also included unlimited sandboarding. It is cheaper if you go on a group of 4 or 5 and just divide the whole cost.

The ride took us to the popular locations of the known Filipino movies such as Nora Aunor's Himala and FPJ's Panday. But more than that, it took us to places that are amazingly breathtaking despite it being only what seems to be an endless horizon of sand.

4x4 Ride at Sand Dunes Ilocos

4x4 Ride at Sand Dunes Ilocos

Now this is something I would want to do over and over again. It is actually our first time to do sandboarding and surprisingly, we were so good at it! We didn't fall or crash, nor have we landed on our butts.
Sandboarding at Sand Dunes Ilocos
Sandboarding at Sand Dunes Ilocos
My skin felt a little tingly after a few rides. I knew then and there my skin suffered from another sunburn. But I wasn't really scared of getting darker. I was more afraid of the heat stroke. Midday sun is unforgiving and being in the middle of the desert isn't a very good idea. So if you're planning to go there, be there at sunrise or just before the sun sets.

The 4x4 ride and sandboarding experience is definitely one for the books. If this wasn't too far from home, I'd do this regularly. Since I don't think l'll ever get better in the waters (I suck at surfing by the way), I just might as well be a pro at this. Haha. And now that I think about it, I wonder how would I fare in the snow?

Paoay Sand Dunes
Paoay Sand Dunes

From Laoag, you can hire a tricycle that will take you to Paoay Sand Dunes for Php 250. You can also opt to tour other attractions in Paoay (Malacañang of the North, Paoay Lake, Paoay Church, Paoay Bell Tower) for Php 600. Tricycle prices are really steep. But you can also ride a jeepney from Laoag to Paoay for less than Php 50, then just do the tour on your own. :)

Ilocandia Trip:
Pagudpud Tour
Burgos Tour
Vigan Tour
4x4 and Sandboarding Experience


  1. namiss ko na magbisita d2. dami mo na pala napuntahan!

  2. Very nice sarj! Want to try this soon. Left footed diay ka or naka flip ang camera?

  3. Wala nakaflip ang camera. I wasn't actually aware of that until Jan pointed it out. And katong guy sa pottery kay giingnan ko na kaliwete ko. But you know very well na right hand dominant ko dba? Although I can write well sa left (mas legible pa akong penmanship sa left than most guys in our class bwahahaha).

    Now I'm having identity crisis. Am I a lefty or a righty? Maybe I was born lefty raised as a righty. hahaha

    1. hindi ko masyadong naintindihan, pero sa pagkakaintindi ko your a lefty like me! kasi kapag nagskateboard ako nauuna ang right foot ko ganun din kasi sayo.

  4. Ang pinakamalayong napuntahan ko sa North is Baguio pa lang. I would really love to visit this place, hopefully with the family. I agree, mas mura kung marami, chip-in2x sa bayarin. lol.


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Maira Gall