Vigan Travel Tips
Vigan enjoys two kinds of seasons, the dry season from November to April and the wet season from May to October. It is recommended that travelers visit during dry season, especially from December to February when temperatures are much cooler and touring will most likely not be interrupted by rains. Another thing to consider when deciding on the date for your Vigan tour is the schedule of festivities. A visit during the Christmas holidays, New Year’s, Vigan City Festival, Holy Week and Viva Vigan celebrations are recommended.
It might be quite hot for some in Vigan. Temperatures could go from 21 to 30 degrees Celsius, averaging at 26 degrees. It is also quite humid. So, travelers are advised to pack light with comfortable clothing, preferably cotton, and well-soled sneakers or slippers for walking on the uneven cobblestone streets. Hair conditioner, mosquito repellent and sunscreen protection are a must to protect your hair and skin. You can choose to buy these from local stores, which are stocked with local and international brands. However, it is best to bring your own medicine and batteries.
For your tour around Vigan, bring a foldable umbrella, a fan and a water bottle in your bags.
Though information over the web will arm you well for your visit, a stop at the Tourist Center is a must if you want to make sure that you have all the information that you need. It is located at the entrance of Calle Crisologo, beside the Heritage Village. The best advise to visitors is to take a calesa (horse-drawn carriage) ride when touring the UNESCO Heritage Village and nearby sights. The rate is Php 150 per hour. You can decide on the places you want to visit from the map you’ve secured. Inform the driver about it before the start of the calesa ride. The calesa can accommodate up to four adults. Remember that there are calesas accredited by the Department of Tourism.
If you want to try the tricycle (motorcycle with a covered side car that can accommodate six people) to transport you to farther tourist sites, it is recommended that the fare cost be determined before you hop in. You can haggle on the quoted price. Visitors are also advised to bring small bills and change because drivers don’t usually have enough change. You might end up paying more than the agreed price because you only have big bills. You can also arrange for tricycles to pick you up at an appointed time. Haggling is the norm when shopping in Vigan, so don’t be shy to do so. The locals can converse in English and though their manner of speaking might come on too strong, this is normally how they speak. The long bus ride to Vigan may be a novel experience but on your way back to Manila taking the plane from Laoag airport would save on time and be kinder to your tired body after all the touring. The airport is around an hour away.