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Travel Guide: Pagudpud's Bantay Abot Cave, Timmangtang, Patapat, Agua Grande & Paraiso ni Anton

Bantay Abot Caves Pagudpud Ilocos Norte
Eye of the needle. Bantay Abot Caves from afar. In Ilocano, bantay = mountain, abot = hole, so there you go - mountain hole. That hole's diameter is pretty wide, maybe 2 storeys tall, or a bit more. Bantay Abot is just by the road in Sitio Gaoa, Barangay Balaoi in Pagudpud.  It's about 1.5 kilometers away from the Blue Lagoon (Maira-ira), when you're headed back to the highway.

Timmangtang Rock Pagudpud Ilocos Norte
Timmangtang Rock. Maybe a couple of hundred meters up the road from the Bantay Abot Caves.

Lovers Rock - Bantay Abot Caves & Timmangtang Rock Pagudpud Ilocos Norte
Coupled together (beast with two backs? heh), locals say Bantay Abot and Timmangtang are called Lover's Rock. Photographed from the top of a hill across the road.

Patapat Viaduct Pagudpud Ilocos Norte
Patapat Viaduct to the east. About 3 kilometers from the Pan-Philippine Highway and Barangay Balaoi junction. The winding 1.2 kilometer ocean-side Patapat Viaduct sits at the northern base of the Cordillera mountain range.

Agua Grande Pagudpud Ilocos Norte
Agua Grande Picnic Park, where the river meet the sea. The Agua Grande river from the Cordilleras feed out into Pasaleng Bay. There's a mini hydro-electric plant ran by the Ilocos Norte Electric Cooperative to harness the Agua Grande's power.

Patapat Viaduct Pagudpud Ilocos Norte
Patapat Viaduct to the west.

Paraiso ni Anton Pagudpud Ilocos Norte
Close-up of Paraiso ni Anton's stream.Who is Anton? No one seems to know! A stream by the road further on going to Cagayan. There's a grotto and a few stalls selling food and souvenir items. Jeeps and buses passing through appear to make this a stop over. Reputedly miraculous, passengers and tourists fill flasks and whatever empty containers they have with water from the stream.

Pagudpud Ilocos Norte
The bridge jumpers. These local boys were diving into the Bolo river all afternoon.

Except for Kaibigan Falls, which we didn't have time for, you can round up all these attractions in half a day. From the Blue Lagoon, there's only one continuous route to follow and back. If you can bring or rent a bike, do so. You can also hire a tricycle for 600 pesos for half a day. If you'll be bringing your own vehicle, make two visits to Patapat, to photograph the light play at dawn and dusk.