It was already past 12 noon when we reached the first town of Cagayan Valley, Sta. Praxedes. We were relieved to know that we’re already within Cagayan and sooner, we are now in our destination. That’s what we thought.
In Claveria, we made a stop in a unfinished “viewdeck” with a view of the of Sta Praxedes and Claveria coast:
It was already past one in the afternoon when I felt I need to be fed. Being unfamiliar to the place, I did not know where to make a stop and eat, until we passed by this place in Sanchez Mira:
The specialty of the house is “pancit batil patong” which we learned from the chef is the specialty noodle of Cagayan.
Well, at least “one of the” because on your way back, we stopped by another place that serves another specialty noodle of Cagayan, the “Pancit Cabagan.” They tasted the same except a tiny difference on the appearance. “Pansit batil patong” looks like the ordinary pansit guisado with fresh egg on top, while “pansit cabagan” looks more of a “pansit palabok” with chicharon and boiled eggs on top.
After lunch, we continued driving, still clueless on how near or far are we from Tuguegarao City. Along the road, are locals planting rice which by the looks of it entails massive talent to make the lines (of the rice) straight (almost, at least) and extreme will-power to stay in the mud and under the sun for the whole day! I have nothing but pure admiration for these people because I know that they may never be wealthy by harvesting rice for themselves but they keep on doing this all year round to feed their families. I know, my father was a part-time farmer and we were religiously fed.
By the way, I’ve posted drying rice on roadside before and finally, I got the best evidence that it’s prohibited to do so which I want to share with you:
Further down the road, in Alacapan, if I’m not mistaken, we passed by this suspension bridge called the “Magapit Suspension Bridge.”
The bridge is claimed to be “one of the firsts” suspension bridges in Asia and it is after the bridge that we took a right turn to Tuguegarao City. I thought we were already very near but when we saw a road sign which says “Tuguegarao – 64 kms,” my energy dramatically went down to its lowest level! Even then, we did not have a choice but to drive yet farther and faster because we still have to look for a place to stay when we reach Tuguegarao. In Gattaran, we passed by this tiny watchtower which resembles that of a castle. At first I thought it was in my history books which merited our stop but upon closer observation, it was not. It was just a part of the front lawn of a residence. Cool! The owner may have been fascinated by watchtowers in fairy tale books.
Finally, at about five in the afternoon, we reached Tuguegarao City. What caught my attention upon our entrance is their version of the “calesa.” The wheels are not the same with the calesa’s of Vigan or Laoag. Here, the wheels appear to be with “interiors” or maybe tubeless perhaps? That would make the ride smoother on humps and potholes!
We also have to stop by this “pagoda” made of bamboo. This is actually a shop that sells plants. We wanted to stop again and check their merchandise on our way back to Ilocos but it was closed, maybe because it was Sunday then.
Hope you enjoyed some of the images I was able to take in Cagayan Valley, as much as I did. In my next post, I will be uploading images of our spelunking in Callao Caves. Do come back to check it out… Postcript: The”Magapit Suspension Bridge” is located in Lal-lo,Cagayan.The correction was supplied by Jake of Lasam,Cagayan.