Shopping and Souvenirs in Vigan
When looking for authentic shopping finds at the best possible price for your pocket, the best place to go is to the public market. This is where all the goods that residents make and buy can be found at prices that are affordable to the locals. Vigan’s Public Market can be found within proximity of the Partas Bus Station. You can reach it by riding a tricycle or a calesa (horse-drawn vehicle). This two-storey structure is easy to find as it is a huge, busy place. Shoppers can buy local crafts, food and almost anything else that are offered in Calle Crisologo at a much cheaper price. One must remember though that only cash is accepted and haggling is okay.
The dry goods can be found in the ground floor, while those looking for Vigan longganisa and bagnet can head directly to the second floor. It is best to allot time to go to the Vigan Public Market after touring is done. However, if one has a tight schedule, it is best to buy the products that you like as you tour Vigan. When touring the UNESCO Heritage Village in Calle Crisologo, you can already keep your eyes out for the products Vigan is known for and would most remind you of your visit. If you don’t mind bulky items, a great thing to bring home is an antique or reproduction from one of the
shops along Calle Crisologo. You can choose from furniture, statues and other antique décors. These wooden products are usually made from the sought-after narra or mahogany. With a little haggling, you might just bring home a lovely chair or table for less than a thousand. If you would like lighter souvenirs, you can set your sights on abel products that come in the form of bed and table linens, bags and clothes. You can also buy wallets and coin purses, earthen jars, basi wine, sweets and longganisa and hand-rolled cigars in the shops in Calle Crisologo, aside from the usual t-shirt, key chain and refrigerator magnet with the huge Vigan word on them. Shops selling these can also be found along Calle Plaridel.
Remember that you can negotiate for bigger discounts if you intend to buy in bulk. If your tour includes a visit to Pagburnayan and Camangaan, than it is advisable to buy your terracotta and abel woven products, respectively, from there. You’ll have more choices and haggle directly with the makers. For those on the look out for Vigan’s kottokong craft (gourd hat with nito and bamboo), these are made in Barangay Bongtolan. For a unique souvenir in keeping with the Vigan heritage tour, visitors can have their picture taken wearing period clothes which they can have at the Zaguan Photo Studio.