Batan Island is the largest and most populated island of Batanes Province. It is composed of four municipalities namely Basco, Ivana, Uyugan and Mahatao. Its capital Basco, is located on the northern part of the island, and is the center of commerce and seat of the provincial government. What sets Batanes apart, even in the Philippines, are its Ivatan inhabitants, members of a distinct ethnic group with hazy origins and its own language. They have for centuries eked out a living here from fishing and yam farming and withstood centuries of ferocious typhoons with equal parts grit and grace. Places to visit on Batan Island include the Valugan Boulder Beach, the Nakamaya Burial Grounds, the Dipnaysupuan Japanese Tunnel, Fundacion Pacita, the Pagasa Weather Station, Tukon Church, Vayang Rolling Hills, Chadpidan Boulder Beach, and the Naidi Hills. Continue reading
Basco is known for its breathtaking views of the ocean and quaint structures great for photo opportunities. One of its landmarks, the Basco Lighthouse is a 6-story building with a viewing deck overlooking the whole of Batan Island. Another impressive structure is the Fundacion Pacita Batanes Nature Lodge, once the home of internationally-acclaimed artist Pacita Abad which was refurbished into a deluxe bed & breakfast.