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Hailed as the Surfing Capital of the North, La Union takes pride in its monster swells that hug its shores for most of the year. Along with Siargao and Baler, “Elyu”, as regulars fondly call it, completes the holy trinity of Philippine surfing. The province’s reputation as a wave rider’s playground has been well documented in various publications; it’s pretty much common knowledge.

But there is so much more to La Union than its waves. Sprinkled throughout the province are a diverse set of attractions that have been largely overlooked. From historic manmade sites like Baluarte Watch Tower and Pindangan Ruins to other natural wonders like Tangadan Falls and Immuki Island, here are other noteworthy places to visit and things to do that will make you fall in love even deeper with La Union.

Note: Here are La Union’s travel requirements for tourists. But because travel policies and opening hours often change, please check the official websites or Facebook pages for the latest announcements first before going.

BEST TOURIST SPOTS IN LA UNION

Urbiztondo Surfing

Okay, let’s get this out of the way first since it would be a grave crime to not include surfing in this list.

The best time to surf is from July to March. Whether you’re a seasoned rider, an excited beginner or simply a spectator, surfing is inescapable here. Surfboard rentals and surfing lessons are everywhere. Rates vary depending on the season (peak and off-peak).

Surfing in La Union

Surfing Lesson Rates: P350-500 (1 hour, with surfboard and instructors); P200-250 (surfboard rental only).

Surfing Season: July to October (South Swell); November to March (North Swell)


San Juan Food Trip

For non-surfers, San Juan offers another type of trip — the delicious kind! The food here is enough to compel us to visit La Union again and again. The food scene here is alive and kicking. There’s just a lot to discover and there’s always something new. Every time we visit, we try numerous joints, yet it always seems like we’re barely scratching the surface. But it’s okay because it means that we have more reasons to visit again.

Whether you are on a budget or in the mood to splurge, San Juan has a lot to offer. Our favorites so far are the following:

  • MASA Bakehouse – Try their shakshouka and Manong Benny (Eggs Benedict)
  • Gefseis Greek Grill – chicken souvlaki and moussaka
  • Mad Monkeys – smoky BBQ bacon burger
  • Tagpuan – goto and lugaw
  • Dampa sa San Juan – mixed seafood
  • Sabong Chicken – honey bagoong fried chicken
  • Kabsat – beef kare-kare and shrimp in crab fat
  • Nak Nak – crispy pork kare-kare and beef sisig
  • Makai Bowls – surfer’s bowl

Aside from the restaurants, San Juan also harbors cafés where you can just enjoy a cup of your favorite coffee concoction while chilling and vibing with your friends! There are excellent homegrown coffee shops offering local coffee blends and other beverages. We’ve tried the offerings El Union Coffee and Clean Beach Coffee.

We’ll be publishing a separate article about the various food places around San Juan soon, so watch out for that.


Tangadan Falls

Nestled in the mountainous area of San Gabriel, Tangadan Falls is probably the most famous of the many cascades in the province. Baroro River flows down two tiers, each with its own natural pool. The whole place is surrounded by smooth limestone cliffs and peppered with boulders.

Tangadan Falls

During the rainy season, the lower tier produces twin cascades. The cold water is refreshing after the 15-minute trek down from the jump-off point. If you are not a confident swimmer, you can rent a life vest or just swim in the shallow parts. Avoid the mossy rocks because they are very slippery, but if you can’t avoid them, be extra careful. For the adventurous, you can go cliff jumping!

The way back to the jump-off point entails ascending trails and taking numerous concrete steps. Although there are rest stops, it might still be challenging for seniors and those with mobility problems.

No tour guide, no entry policy. You also need to present the official receipt (OR) issued by the Municipal Treasury Office before you can enter the Tangadan Falls vicinity. The office is located beside the San Gabriel Police Station.

Location: Barangay Amontoc, San Gabriel, La Union
Visiting Hours: 6:00 AM – 5:00 PM (Daily)
Fees: P30/head (Environmental Fee); P500 (Guide Fee); P60 (Life Vest Rental)
Habal-Habal Fare: P400 (Roundtrip, 1 pax); P600 (Roundtrip, 2 pax). The trip is from Municipal Treasury Office to Tangadan Falls Trailhead.


Immuki Island

Accessible after a 30-minute drive from San Juan, Immuki Island is perfect for those who are looking for new adventures in La Union. Off the coast of Barangay Paraoir, it is a rocky paradise adorned with mangroves and carved with three picturesque lagoons.

Immuki Island

The lagoons have steady and clear but deep waters, perfect for swimming and cliff diving. You can even see fish swimming! However, note that there are shallow areas and there are also deep areas. The deep parts of the lagoons range from eight (8) to twelve (12) feet in depth. Moreover, put on protective footwear like aqua shoes because the rocks and corals are sharp.

To access Immuki Island, you need to register at the barangay hall. There’s a designated parking lot if you are bringing your car. From here, there are two ways of reaching the island — by treading the waters during low tide and by riding a balsa during high tide. Barangay Paraoir boasts an abundance of sea urchins, so you might spot some on the way to the island.

You cannot bring food and drinks to the island, but you can use one of the cottages along the beach if you are planning to have your lunch there. There are shops, showers and changing cubicles, but they are very basic. Bring your own toiletries and towels too.

Location: Barangay Paraoir, Balaoan, La Union
Visiting Hours: 6:00 AM – 6:00 PM (Daily)
Fees: P20/head (Environmental Fee); P250 (Balsa Rental, Good for 5-7 pax); P10 (Shower Fee); Donation-Type (Cottage)


Bauang Grape Farms

The town of Bauang boasts hectare upon hectare of vineyards and grape farms. Overshadowed by the beaches and waves of the neighboring towns, the grape-picking activity in Bauang is certainly an underrated attraction in the province. But timing is everything here because grapes are seasonal. Luckily for us, we visited in March, just in time for the grape-picking season!

La Union Grape Picking

Along the long stretch of MacArthur Highway, from TPLEX going to San Fernando and San Juan, we noticed several people with posters that read: “Grape Picking” or “Grape Farm/Grape Picking”. We didn’t know whether or not they are legit, so we went straight to Lomboy Grape Farm‘s Uvas Café and inquired there. We chose it because the founder of Lomboy Farm is the pioneer of grape farming in the region, credited for introducing the industry to La Union.

After registering, we were led to the partner grape farm (Danny Ancheta’s Grapes Farm). The team actually enjoyed our time picking grapes and sampling local grape wine, fruit wine, and natural fruit juice concentrate — Mangosteen, Blueberry, and Guyabano.

Best Grape-Picking Months: March to May (Dry Season)
Fees: P25/head (Registration/Entrance Fee); P350/kilo (Grape Picking Activity); P25 (Parking Fee)
Established Grape Farms: Lomboy Grape Farms, Gapuz Grapes Farm, Danny Ancheta’s Grapes Farm, Manguerra Grapes Farm, Calica Grapes Farm, Acosta Grapes Farm, and others


SAN JUAN Tourist Spots

Urbiztondo Beach & Sunset

This is where it all started! More than half of Elyu’s income is generated in San Juan, particularly from the Urbizondo area where accommodations and dining places mushroomed between the 2000s and 2010s. This is La Union’s tourism hub.

Urbiztondo Beach

From its wide bed of sand to its spectacular sunset, you’ll find a lot to enjoy here even if you’re not interested in surfing at all. The shore is lined with restaurants and cafes, making it a favorite hangout place for sunbathers, foodies, and sunset lovers. The area is also a popular spot for nightlife and beach parties.

Urbiztondo Beach is the best area to stay in La Union because of its proximity to the beach and the highway as well as its wide array of dining options. Other attractions in La Union are also easily accessible from here. You’ll also find most accommodations here.

If you wish to make Urbiztondo as your base, here are some of your lodging options:


Lotus Valley Farm

NOTE: Lotus Valley Farm remains CLOSED, but we’re including it here on this list in case they decide to open. (The management said they would be opening SOON when we inquired.)

Lotus Valley Farm

Are you more of a mountain person? Do you prefer peace and quiet? Well, you might want to consider staying at Lotus Valley Farm, a sustainable and eco-friendly nature resort tucked away in the mountainous parts of the popular surf town.

It started in 2009 when owners and environment advocates Toby and Marissa Tamayo purchased hectares of land and transformed it into a verdant and flourishing agro-tourism destination. They created a forest paradise with over 20,000 trees of various kinds (narra, antipolo, molave, etc.) and countless medicinal, ornamental and edible plants. And in the middle, they built bamboo huts, where guests can spend the night.

It also features a lotus flower plant garden, a stream, and a spring that also helps supply water throughout the barangay. Some parts of this hidden gem are not open to the public because they are home to wild bees, bats, and birds, just to name some. The food options offered here are plant-based, farm-to-table types.

Before the pandemic, we had the privilege of touring the farm and experiencing acupuncture detox and sound meditation. We also had a delicious plant-based dinner made from vegetables that were harvested from the farm itself.

Day tour visits were allowed pre-pandemic. But staying overnight in their kubo is another experience. No need for air-conditioning and you’ll get to wake up to the sound of the birds! If you are planning to spend a night here (when they reopen), note that the cellphone signal is rough, so that means away from your gadgets and more time to commune with nature.

If you’re only interested in seeing an expanse of lotus plants, other than Lotus Valley Farm, there are also roadside lotus farms that are publicly accessible in La Union like this one:

Lotus Farm in La Union
Photo by Mariah Cruz

There are sunflower farms, too.

Address: Sitio Kasilagan, Dasaya, San Juan, La Union
Contact Details: 0942 366 4519 (Mobile Number)


CURMA Center

If you have a heart for marine life conservation or you are just curious about how you can help protect the environment, you might want to check out SIFCare-CURMA Hatchery in San Juan. CURMA (Coastal Underwater Resource Management Actions) focuses on the conservation and protection of marine turtles through regular beach patrolling and hatchery management.

Other than that, the organization also partners with other interested parties for coastal clean-ups and pawikan-release events.

The group also conducts information and education campaigns and other advocacies like the “No Plastic” campaign. If you are interested in volunteering or donating, you can visit the headquarters or the official website to learn more.

Address: SIFCare-CURMA Hatchery, 374 Saint Jude Subdivison, Ili Norte, San Juan, La Union
Contact Details: 0942 366 4519 (Mobile Number); curma@sifcare.org (E-Mail Address); http://sifcare.org/curma (Official Website)


SAN FERNANDO Tourist Spots

Ma Cho Temple

The Ma Cho Temple is an iconic cultural landmark in San Fernando. Constructed in 1977, this is said to be the first Taoist temple in the Philippines and is dedicated to the Chinese sea goddess Mazu (Ma Cho).

Ma Cho Temple in La Union

Resting atop a hill, it affords a panoramic view of the San Fernando Harbor and the West Philippine Sea. It features the Altar of the Goddess of Ma Cho, the Altar of Our Heavenly Father, the Statues of the 18 Taoist Disciples, the Majestic Five-Door Gate, the Bamboo Garden, the Lian Thing Pagoda, The Goddess of Mercy (Kwan Yen), the Bell and Drum Tower, and its renowned Spider-Type Dome. The temple is open to both worshipers and non-worshipers.

There’s an annual pilgrimage wherein the image of Ma Cho travels from San Fernando to the Archdiocesan Shrine of Our Lady of Caysasay in Taal, Batangas during the 5th day of the 8th month of the lunar calendar because many followers believe that Ma Cho and Our Lady of Caysasay are one and the same.

Address: Ma Cho Temple, Quezon Avenue, San Fernando, La Union
Opening Hours: 7:00 AM – 5:00 PM (Daily). Note that the schedule may change, so check the official website or Facebook page before going.
Entrance Fee: FREE


Filipino-Chinese Friendship Pagoda

Filipino Chinese Friendship Pagoda in La Union

Also sitting on top of a hill, this Friendship Pagoda is a commemoration of the neighborly relations between the Filipinos and the Chinese people. It provides a scenic view of the city of San Fernando and the sea beyond.

At its feet lies a park where locals can just hang and unwind. (When we visited, locals stayed here to escape the heat and just chill.)

There are two entry points to the pagoda. The easier route is at the top where the signage is located, while the other one entails a short trek up from the public park entrance below.

One of the landmarks is the La Union Provincial Capitol building, located just a few meters away from the pagoda.

Address: Filipino-Chinese Friendship Pagoda, Aguila Road, San Fernando, La Union
Opening Hours: 24/7
Entrance Fee: FREE


Pindangan Ruins

Pindangan Ruins La Union

Constructed in 1764 under the Spanish rule, the Pindanagan Ruins is what’s left of the first ever Catholic church of San Fernando — mostly the age-old stone walls and the buttresses.

Adjacent to the Carmelite Monastery, this historical landmark is managed and maintained by the Carmelite sisters.

Please avoid leaning on or climbing up the walls for your safety and for the preservation of the ruins.

Address: Pindangan, San Fernando, La Union
Opening Hours: 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM (Daily). Note that the schedule may change, so check the latest announcement first before going.
Entrance Fee: P25 (Regular); P20 (Senior/Student); P500 (Photo Shoot and Video Shoot)


Halo-halo de Iloko

Halo halo de Iloko

It is hot in La Union, especially in the dry, summer months. No wonder halo-halo is especially popular in the region. And when it comes to this dessert/snack, no other name in San Fernando can beat Halo-halo de Iloko (at least in terms of recall). It is said that the ingredients they use are fresh every day and are mostly sourced from local suppliers.

They also serve rice meals and snacks, but we ordered all three halo-halo items on their menu — Fiesta Halo-Halo (P120), Buko Halo-Halo (P195), and Pritong Halo-Halo (P150). The first two capture the taste of classic halo-halo we are all familiar with. (Don’t expect mind-blowing twists or special or unusual ingredients.)

What we enjoyed the most, however, was the pritong halo-halo, which is very different from the typical halo-halo fix. In this creative take, ingredients like bananas are served hot and stacked with ubeng halaya, cheese and other ingredients. The cherry on top is a nice touch, too. If you could order just one, make it this one.

Pritong Halo Halo

Confidently marketed as La Union’s best, Halo-Halo de Iloko is usually crowded during peak hours. It is quite popular among locals and tourists alike. When we visited, we came before the peak hours so we were able to find a table. Before we finished our halo-halo, there was already a line of customers waiting outside. And it was mid-week!

By the way, if you are traveling by private car, the designated parking lot is far. We had a hard time securing a slot, so we opted to go for a pay-parking slot, which was a five-minute tricycle ride from Halo-Halo de Iloko.

Address: Zandueta Street, San Fernando, La Union
Opening Hours: 9:00 AM – 9:00 PM (Daily). Note that the schedule may change, so check the official Facebook page before going.


Christ the Redeemer Statue

Christ the Redeemer Status La Union

San Fernando’s hilly terrain provides perfect sites for landmark structures such as the Ma Cho Temple and the Filipino-Chinese Friendship Pagoda. Besides these two, another significant hilltop landmark is the 25-foot Christ the Redeemer statue. Inaugurated in June 2007, the statue symbolizes overflowing gratitude, blessings, and protection.

We actually didn’t plan on making a stop here. We stumbled upon it by chance while looking for parking space, so we just decided to spend a bit of time here. It can be accessed by climbing a pretty steep alley in a concealed part of town.

It can get really hot at noon, so if you are planning to reach the top on foot, go here early in the morning or late in the afternoon to avoid the heat. Anyway, it overlooking the city proper and the San Fernando Bay to the west, so it’s best to visit in late afternoon for the sunset.

Address: Reservoir Hill, Barangay I, San Fernando City, La Union
Opening Hours: 24/7
Entrance Fee: FREE


Thunderbird Poro Point Resort

Thunderbird Poro Point La Union

Located at the highest point of Poro Point Peninsula and facing the San Fernando Bay, Thunderbird Poro Point encompasses a land area of about 65 hectares, housing luxurious villas, restaurants, wellness facilities, and a nine-hole golf course.

The resort’s impeccable Santorini-inspired theme and the sheer look-and-feel of the place do give off an exclusive vibe, which some may find intimidating. (We were kinda intimidated at first. LOL.) But day trip visitors are welcome here. The P300 entrance fee is consumable and is inclusive of access to some of the dining options and to explore and take photos in some areas, including the resort’s symbolic Santorini dome.

Pre-pandemic, day tour hours were from 8:00 AM to 5:00 pm. However, when we visited, we were told it would open at 11am. (They might have referred to the restaurant and we just misunderstood.) Anyway, we decided to just return past 11am. Unfortunately, it was really hot at the time. The sun was scorching and the white surroundings were blinding, so we weren’t able to explore much. We could have melted if we stayed any longer. So if you can, visit in the late afternoon, when the sun is less harsh.

We still had a grand time, though, because the resort is just gorgeous!

Address: Poro Point Freeport Zone, San Fernando City, La Union
Day Tour Hours: 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM (Daily). Reservation is required at least 24 hours before arrival.
Day Tour Entrance: P300/head (F&B consumable). If you want to access the swimming pool, check the official website or Facebook page for day tour package promos.


Poro Point Lighthouse

A short drive north of Thunderbird Resort, Poro Point Lighthouse is one of La Union’s historical landmarks, dating back to 1905 during the American occupation. Facing the West Philippine Sea, it rises at the height of 27 feet and serves as one of the points of interest in the Poro Point Freeport Zone.

Since it’s located just across Poro Point Baywalk, many locals include this spot in their walking, jogging, or cycling routes both in the morning and in the late afternoon (just in time for the sunset!)

Address: Poro Point Freeport Zone, San Fernando City, La Union
Opening Hours: 24/7
Entrance Fee: FREE


NORTHERN LA UNION Tourist Spots

Paraoir Manmade Forest

Paraoir Manmade Forest in La Union

If you’re going to Luna and you’re coming from San Juan, San Fernando or Immuki Island, you’ll be passing under its green canopy!

Dressing a significant portion of the Bacnotan-Luna-Balaoan Road, the long stretch of towering canopies creates a natural green tunnel, mesmerizing numerous travelers. People usually park their vehicles on the side of the road to take photos. It’s very similar to the mahogany forest in Bohol.

If you are planning to stop and take photos too, just remember that this is a major road, so make sure that you park your car properly to avoid obstructing the traffic and be careful when taking photos.


Nalvo Pebble Beach

La Union's Pebble Beach

Looking for unusual beaches in La Union? You need not go far because just 30-45 minutes away from San Juan is the town of Luna!

While the beaches of San Juan are strewn with relatively fine sand, Luna’s shore is covered in pebbles. The most popular part of this long stretch is the Nalvo Pebble Beach. You’ll find a number of resorts here, but it’s best known for the art galleries that punctuate it — Bahay na Bato, Bato de Luna, and Kamay na Bato. After exploring the beach, visit one or all of these art galleries and appreciate the pebble works and structures.

Location: Nalvo Norte and Nalvo Sur, Luna, La Union


Baluarte Watchtower

Inside Baluarte Watchtower La Union

The Baluarte Watchtower, also called Luna Watchtower, is one of the five historic watchtowers in La Union declared by the National Museum of the Philippines as cultural treasures in 2014. This centuries-old structure served as a lookout tower for invading enemies such as Chinese, Japanese, and Moro pirates.

Today, the restored brick tower is one of the most visited tourist attractions in Luna. It also stands just next to the pebble beach, making it snap-worthy from almost any angle. (Well, not during our visit because an event was set to be staged at the site.)

Baluarte Watchtower

If you get hungry, you can grab a drink and meal at nearby Lola Mending’s Cafe. Don’t forget to try the Baluarte Supreme churros, which takes the shape of the watchtower!

Baluarte Churros by Lola Mending's Cafe

Address: Barangay Victoria, Luna, La Union
Opening Hours: 24/7
Entrance Fee: FREE


Bahay na Bato

Bahay na Bato in La Union

This extensive art gallery used to be the vacation house of Dr. Edison and Dr. Purita Chan-Noble. Situated on the pebble beach of Barangay Nalvo Norte, the property is mostly built using pebbles and stones.

The first things you’ll probably notice are the statues scattered throughout the site. They vary greatly in terms of theme and design, but our favorites are those whimsical and almost tongue-in-cheek artworks that show the artist’s sense of humor.

Statues around Bahay na Bato in Luna

Inside Bahay na Bato in La Union

The indoor galleries also showcase Filipino artifacts. In between two houses lies a garden, adorned with trees, giving life to the seemingly cold and hard environment and giving visitors shaded sanctuary away from the burning sun.

The whole place caters to guests of all ages and boasts various Instagrammable photo spots. The property is also open for prenuptial shoots and other themed photoshoots.

If you want to maximize and enjoy your visit, avoid going during noon time when the sun is too merciless. Early morning or late afternoon is the best time to go.

Address: Bahay na Bato, Nalvo Norte, Luna, La Union
Opening Hours: 7:00 AM – 6:00 PM (Daily). Note that the schedule may change, so check the official Facebook page before going.
Entrance Fee: P50 (Regular); FREE (Below 2 y/o)


Bato de Luna

Bato de Luna

Can’t get enough of the pebble-lous installations and artworks? Bato de Luna is not too far from Bahay na Bato. Actually, from the main road (Bacnotan-Luna-Balaoan Road), when you make a turn on the barangay road leading to the art galleries, the first property you’ll see is Bato de Luna to your right.

You know you’re at the right place when you’re greeted by a gigantic statue of a turtle, made of, you guessed it, stones and pebbles! This is the site’s most prominent structure, which houses an interactive optical illusion floor painting, textured colorful walls filled with artworks, and a painted ceiling.

Bato de Luna puts on the spotlight the works of South Korean stone artist and sculptor, Mr. Bong Kim (whom I think is also the same creative mind behind some of the pieces at neighboring Bahay na Bato). Other attractions are quirky and naughty stone figures and colorful photo spots.

It also has a restaurant that offers breakfast meals as well as ‘unli rice’ and ‘unli sabaw’ meal options. You can also buy pasalubong from the souvenir shop.

Address: Bato de Luna, Nalvo Norte, Luna, La Union
Opening Hours: 7:00 AM – 6:00 PM (Daily). Note that the schedule may change, so check the official Facebook page before going.
Entrance Fee: P50 (Regular)


Darigayos Beach

Darigayos Beach

Compared to other beaches in the municipality of Luna, Darigayos Beach is not pebbly, but the cream-colored sand is not powdery fine either. Locals and some tourists still flock to the beach because the waves here are relatively calmer. There are parts that are shallow, but there are also parts that are deep, so always be on your guard and familiarize yourself with the beachscape first.

Choose a spot that you feel most comfortable swimming in. Open huts and cottages are available for rent.

Location: Darigayos Beach, Bacnotan – Luna – Balaoan Road, Luna, La Union


SOUTHERN LA UNION Tourist Spots

Ciano Umok Gallery & Cafe Ilocano

NOTE: Ciano Umok might still be temporarily CLOSED for now. We’re trying to determine whether or not they are open but we have yet to receive confirmation. But we’ll still put this in the list just in case it opens soon.

Ciano Umok Gallery

We’ve already mentioned Bauang’s grape farms, but there are still plenty of other attractions on the southern end of the province. Also in Bauang is Ciano Umok Gallery & Cafe.

Nestled right smack in the middle of the hilly Barangay Palugsi-Limmansangan, the place functions as an art gallery and a restaurant. The gallery showcases the works of the owner, Cesar Dumo, and other local artists.

If you get hungry, try one of the homemade meals and snacks at the gallery’s in-house Cafe Ilocano. Usually, people stop here for halo-halo. Its version is a bit unusual, carrying only three ingredients — nata, kaong, and red mongo. Another unique thing about it is instead of ice and milk, they top it with something similar to ice cream. It’s like milk-flavored shaved ice that you can eat right away. You can totally skip the halo part.

Ciano Umok Cafe Halo-halo
Photo by Mariah Cruz

Address: Barangay Palugsi-Limmansangan, Bauang, La Union
Opening Hours: 10:00 AM – 7:30 PM (Daily). Note that the schedule may change, so check the official Facebook page before going.


Agoo Eco Fun World

Agoo Eco Fun World

South of Bauang is the town of Agoo, named after the wispy Agoho trees that grow abundantly in the area. In fact, the highway leading to the town center is lined with these towering trees.

Launched in 2014, the Agoo Eco Fun World in Barangay Santa Rita West was developed by the local government and is part of reforestation efforts of the DENR. Locals and tourists alike are drawn to its enchanting manmade forest featuring thousands of Agoho trees, a lagoon, the view of Mount Katayagan, and the beach that faces the Lingayen Gulf.

The whole place is picture-worthy, making it one of the popular destinations for photoshoots. Visitors can also rent picnic huts at the beach area, spread their own mats, or pitch their own tents.

Some of the things to do here are having a picnic, nature bathing, swimming, sunbathing, watching the sunset, kiteflying, jogging, walking, appreciating the mangroves, and doing ‘aura’ photo sessions. Please clean up after yourself if you are planning to have a picnic here.

The best time to go is early morning when the sun is still not too high and late afternoon if you want to catch the sunset.

Address: Agoo Eco Fun World, Barangay Santa Rita West, Agoo, La Union
Environmental Fee: P15 (Adults); P10 (Senior & PWD); FREE (Children below 3ft)
Parking Fee: P10 (Tricycle & Motorcycle); P20 (Other Vehicles)
Rental Fees: P500 (Big Cottage); P1,500 (Pavilion)
Commercial Photoshoot/Videoshoot: P2,000


Agoo Basilica

Agoo Basilica

Founded in 1578 by the Franciscan order, Agoo Basilica, officially named Basilica Minore of Our Lady of Charity, was first dedicated to St. Francis of Assisi. The current Mexocan-Baroque structure dates back to 1975, but it was officially opened to the public in 1978.

After the destructive earthquake of 1990, the 19th-century bell tower was destroyed and the church had to undergo a major reconstruction. However, the bell tower was beyond repair and had to be replaced by a new one.

The present-day minor basilica has two bell towers, doors with Hebrew-script carvings of the ten commandments, a pipe organ, and an underground cemetery and chapel where it also houses holy relics of saints. It is the seat of the Santa Monica Parish of the Roman Catholic Diocese of San Fernando de La Union.

Address: Grotto Road corner MacArthur Highway, Poblacion, Agoo, La Union


PUGAD Pugo Adventure

Situated further inland, far from the coastal towns of La Union, Pugo’s forested and mountainous landscape is a perfect ‘nest’ for PUGAD Pugo Adventure, a very popular leisure and adventure park. Sharing its border with Baguio, the town is blessed with relatively cooler temperature.

It prides itself on being the first to offer zipline adventure in La Union. Other features include a botanical garden, mini zoological park, and swimming pools! Aside from ziplining, guests can also ride ATVs, try the Giant Swing, play Paintball, or do wall climbing.

Although it’s far from the city and major highways, the park is still accessible via public transportation. If you are driving your own car, you can access it via Agoo-Baguio Road (Jose D. Aspiras Highway), then turning to PUGAD Trail. There’s a huge signage directing guests to that road.

Address: PUGAD Pugo Adventure, Pugo, La Union
Opening Hours: 8:00 AM – 6:00 PM (Daily). Note that the schedule may change, so check the official Facebook page before going.
Entrance Fee: P200 (Adults); P150 (Kids 4ft below); FREE (Kids 2ft below). The rates include access to the swimming pools.
Activities: P250-400 (Zipline 1-3); P350/head (ATV); P150/head (Wall Climbing); P250/head (Giant Swing); P250/head (Australian Rundown); P400/head (Paintball). You can also avail of the package options. Check the official Facebook page for the inclusions per package.


Top La Union Resorts and Hotels

If you wish to explore most of La Union, the town of San Juan and the city of San Fernando are the best areas for your base. Both are located at the center of the province. From either, you can easily reach most of the attractions listed above.

Urbiz Garden Bed and Breakfast

We stayed at Urbiz Garden, a beachfront bed-and-breakfast in Urbiztondo, San Juan. I always stay here because of its location, between the highway and the beach.

But if you’d rather stay at a hotel, hostel or resort, here are some of the top properties that can be booked via Agoda.

Search for more La Union Resorts!


Written by Asta Alvarez
Photos by Yosh Dimen
Additional words by Yosh Dimen & Mariah Cruz
Additional photos by Mariah Cruz & Pycan Leynes

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