I got excited upon receiving the invitation, but was actually a bit sad thinking that it will be the first time to spend an overnight without my family and even my husband will be unable to join me as well. Unfortunately, he cannot secure a vacation leave in such a very short notice. Nevertheless, since I had the opportunity, I told myself that there’s nothing I can do about it and might as well seize the chance to enjoy every moment I will have while in Vigan, which in fact, I’m glad I did.
It was my first time to be on a trip that will take me 8-10 hours to journey via ground transportation. The farthest I had so far was in Quezon, Pampanga, Baguio aside from the far towns of Calumpit and Pandi, Bulacan; Amadeo and Silang, Cavite; and Calamba and Pansol, Laguna, etc. which usually takes 2-5 hours only.
We left the Ortigas District around 1:30am and arrived in Metrovigan Café during lunch time. The trip was long, but generally smooth and relaxing since we were riding in a nice and spacy air-conditioned private coaster provided by Metro Vigan Inn as well. Just felt a bit creepy while passing by the dim areas of, probably Tarlac and Pampanga after passing Bulacan, it was almost total darkness in those places.
We had our breakfast during our first stop and ate chicken arroz caldo and “chicken mami”, the Filipino’s version of chicken noodle soup and a powerful hot chocolate drink with milk. Afterwards, we had few stopovers for restroom and “yosi” breaks by some of the group.
As we passed by the different towns of La Union and Ilocos, my eyes enjoyed some views like the deep blue ocean, mountains, wide farms with cows—peaceful and relaxing sceneries compared to the tall buildings and crowded area I used to see every day while I’m in the city.
We got at that place about lunch time and found a warm welcome from the staff up to the officers and owners of the Metro Vigan Inn.
We went straight ahead to their classy café—the Metro Vigan Café. It’s a nice thought that they didn’t serve lunch immediately, but rather a heavy snack instead, so as not to upset our hungry tummy. It was an awesome starter indeed, a Bagnet Burger paired by a quenching orange juice.
Metro Vigan Inn is a great find since it offers an affordable Vigan Road Trip for those who want to experience what Vigan town has to offer.
After the warm welcome and introduction by the owners, Inn Manager Villie and Chef Raymond, rooms were assigned to unpack our things, throw a little relaxation and prepare us for luncheon.
I was initially assigned alone to Room 101 but thank God few blogger friends volunteered to be with me since their rooms will be filled with three companions already. Mars Callo was with me in the room and wooooh, it’s a lucky day for us! The room is sited barely a few stairs from the café and if I’m not mistaken, Room 101 is the only room in the ground floor that receives a tub bath! Yipeeeeh!
Due to the excitement, we explore the rooms first and took pictures, visit other blogger’s nearby rooms before unpacking.
I took some rest and a hot energizing shower before going back to the café.
How could someone resist Vigan foods? And where in the Philippines you could notice such a great café that comes with an amazing choice of food on their menu list? Metro Vigan Café almost have it all!
From the Chef to the staff, anybody will really feel special. Why? Aside from the great service they offer, recipes and ingredients, how foods are being prepared, cooked and presented are perfect signs that they value whoever comes and eat there! Imagine the bagnet itself, it takes a week to have an absolutely unforgettable real bagnet in your plate. Not just an ordinary piece of tender pork marinated in a peculiar mixture of ingredients and deep-frying it, but a special way of preparing before turning it into a mouthwatering bagnet!
When you dine with Metro Vigan Café, it also feels like, just eat and savor the marvelous things while you endure! Oh, and did I say I’m on a diet? Vigan foods are simply irresistible!
The Calesa Tour
The last time I took a calesa ride was when I was still a kid with my mother and aunt. It was due to heavy flood and no jeepneys can afford to take us to next town’s dry market. It frightened me so much when the horse raises its foot and we at the back area, cast down. It made me promise myself never take a calesa ride again.
So it was like a “conquer-your-fear” moment for me when we met “Bulldog”—our partner for that afternoon who took us to different spots of UNESCO’s World Heritage Town:
Bantayan Church and Bell Tower
Lilong & Lilang Restaurant
Senorita Dulce House of Foods
Plaza Salcedo – Dancing Fountain Show
Read my article: 10 things you can do while in Vigan
The Calesa Tour package is available until December 2014, at rates starting from Php 700 per person. The package includes:
- A four-hour city Calesa tour featuring UNESCO World Heritage town of Vigan (6 hours for the Sunset Tour)
- The Culture Vulture Day tour or upgrade to the Sunset Calesa Tour, just add Php 300 per person
Culture Vulture Day Tour is recommended to those on a tight schedule and a tight budget. Tourists can experience the culture and heritage of Vigan with a calesa tour around the city, visiting the historical landmarks and picturesque tourist spots rich in Vigan culture. The tour includes Bantayan Church and Bell Tower, Burnay Pottery, Hidden Garden and Lilong & Lilang Restaurant, Crisologo Museum, Syquia Mansion and Calle Crisologo.
The Sunset Tour upgrade fits Vigan tourists who have a little more time to spend in Vigan. For a more meaningful and leisurely afternoon trip, Metro Vigan has added these local spots where you can shop, dine, and enjoy the local hustle and bustle of Vigan The upgrade includes a trip to the Baluarte Zoo, the luxury heritage museum-hotel Hotel Luna, a snack at Vigan Empanadaan and lastly at the Plaza Salcedo where tourists can witness the Vigan Dancing Fountain.
A Vigan-inspired light meal of Empanada including refreshments.
So, if you are looking for a great and budget friendly Vigan Tour, contact Metro Vigan Inn for affordable packages.
Thank you to our Astig.ph’s Editor-in-Chief Dennison Uy and Powercom for the awesome opportunity and special thanks to Ted Claudio and Dems Angeles for the souvenir pictures.
[stextbox id=”custom” caption=”For more details & updates about Metro Vigan Cafe:”]
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METRO VIGAN INN
ADDRESS: TELEPHONE:MOBILE: EMAIL:
[stextbox id=”info” caption=”How to Get there”]Air – Domestic flights leave Manila daily for Laoag City in Ilocos Norte, which is an hour and a half away by land to Vigan. The city can be reached from Laoag City via local bus companies.
By Land – The 408 km stretch from Manila to Vigan City is a comfortable eight-hour ride along the scenic Manila-Ilocos Highway. Many air-conditioned buses ply the Manila-Vigan route regularly.
Getting Around – The best way to explore Vigan is on foot; the town center is small and compact, yet full of excitement. Experience a kalesa ride around Vigan at a reasonable cost.[/stextbox]