Breathtaking Batanes: A Wonder Like No Other

Breathtaking Batanes: A Wonder Like No Other

The Batanes group of islands is among the northernmost parts of the Philippine archipelago, with some islets being closer to Taiwan than to mainland Luzon. In recent years, Batanes has seen a spike in its tourism due to the fact that more people are becoming aware of the awesome natural wonders the province has to offer.

The Batanes group of islands is among the northernmost parts of the Philippine archipelago, with some islets being closer to Taiwan than to mainland Luzon. In recent years, Batanes has seen a spike in its tourism due to the fact that more people are becoming aware of the awesome natural wonders the province has to offer.

Batanes, which is home to the Ivatan people, thought to be among the earliest settlers in the Philippines, has three major islands — Batan, Itbayat, and Sabtang — that offer different experiences for adventure seekers. The photo above was taken at Rapang Cliff in Itbayat. The cliff provides a majestic view of the sunrise, which is perfect for the kind of aesthetic people look for in their social media posts these days.

To get to Rapang Cliff, tourists and their tour guides trek about three kilometers up a mountain starting at around three in the morning. Upon arrival at the plateau, visitors are greeted by various hues of yellows and oranges filtering in the clouds as the sun slowly comes to life above the open ocean. It is truly a breathtaking sight to see. The cliffs and rocky shores that line the area around the plateau is often fondly compared to those found in New Zealand.

The adventure doesn’t end with the aforementioned Instagram-worthy photograph, though. A couple hundred steps away from the edge of the cliff is an ancient rock formation that natives call the “Stone Bell”. It is exactly what its name suggests – a big slab of stone that sounds like a bell when struck. Tour guides speak of a story where the Stone Bell was used by ancient Ivatan farmers to corral their goats. It is said that when the farmers struck the Stone Bell, the goats feeding on the surrounding grass would respond to the bell-like sound by forming an organized line.

Rapang Cliff in Itbayat is just an appetizer of what Batanes has to offer to nature and adventure lovers. Photographs just can’t do the scenic views justice, but they do light a fire inside the viewer to visit Batanes at least once in their lifetime. Yes, the way going there can be quite a hassle as it is a bit difficult to traverse between islands there, but the sights and sounds truly make all the inconveniences one experiences totally worth it.

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