When I feel my stress level is reaching its boiling point, traveling becomes a STAT order. And luckily, La Union is just 1 to 1 1/2 hours away from Baguio. Hence, equipped with a camera and a little cash, I proceeded with no itinerary in mind.
To be honest, I haven’t figured out whether I should head back home in the afternoon or stay in San Juan for the night.
So I took a passenger SUV bound for Tagudin, Ilocos Sur. The trip would pass through Bauang and going northward to San Fernando City, San Juan, Bacnotan, etc. SUV fare from Baguio to San Juan is Php 100.
At last, touchdown San Juan. I saw the public market so it’s my cue to get off.
San Juan Public Market
I continued walking and I reached the municipal building.
San Juan Municipal Hall
Oh look! An old house just along the highway.
Crossing the street, an old Catholic church is seated, St. John the Baptist Parish.
And here is the memorial wall notably of Captain Candonino Gaerlan, a Filipino war hero.
The weather is warm so it’s about time to get some ice cream (“sor-BEH-tess”, in Filipino). No, it’s not on a cone rather I prefer an ice cream sandwich.
I felt like I am completely detached to the world as I continued walking. I don’t mind if I look like I’m lost or a stranded tourist. Later that afternoon, I found myself in a local eatery (“ka-RIN-der-yah”, in Filipino) where I had my early dinner. After the hearty meal, I became too lazy to head back to San Fernando, where bus terminals bound for Baguio are located. I think I need another day of rest (or wandering).
And so I found Puerto de San Juan to stay for the night.
All of the staff in Puerto de San Juan are nice and helpful. I noticed that this beach resort/hotel in San Juan is undergoing intense renovation and is under a new management. I have heard and read that PSJ was once a high-end resort. Now, the people in PSJ are working to bring back the resort to its former glory. Nevertheless, with the renovations done, overall, PSJ is outstanding.
The theme park is said to be opening soon. Once it does, I will be back here.
The main hotel building
The iconic arch of Puerto de San Juan
My room before I turned in
My night shots
The next day, I was thinking of a new itinerary. San Juan is dubbed as the Surfing Capital of Northern Philippines. So, I headed to Point Break, the famous surfing spot. While Puerto de San Juan is in Ili Sur (Poblacion), Point Break is in Urbiztondo. Walking along the shore towards Point Break is about 20 to 30 minutes. Not bad for testing your leg power.
Me and my light-capturing contraption: Shots fired! Shots fired!
The sky is getting dim and unfortunately, I have to head back to Baguio. As I was walking back to PSJ, San Juan showed its magnificent sunset.
These I learned: San Juan is a good quick fix should I lack Vitamin Sea and La Union is a great place to explore. I wasn’t able to see Tangadan Falls in San Gabriel; Bahay na Bato and the old Spanish watch tower, both in Luna; or other interesting attractions in San Fernando City. But I. Will. Be Back.
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