Lakbay Norte 2: Checking in at Cagayan

After a 4-hour delay, we finally made it back to Cagayan. We’re on the second leg of Lakbay Norte 2, and we’re going to explore more of North Luzon.

Cagayan Museum
First stop: Cagayan Museum

Due to the delay, we had limited time to spend in the Cagayan Museum at the provincial capitol complex. Just enough time to eat a Cagayan favorite: pancit batil patong. I love pancit and the unique twist they put in this favorite noodle dish. It’s just noodles sauteed with sauce topped with chopped onions, poached egg, pork broth, and seasoned with calamansi or vinegar and soy sauce.

Pancit Batil Patong
It doesn’t look enticing, but Pancit batil patong is really quite good

We were also given paoa, a local delicacy that is similar to the Japanese mochi. Locally made snacks like chicharabao (chicharon made with carabao [water buffalo] fat) and chichacorn.

Matara coral reef and white sand beach, a marine protected area is located in the town of Gonzaga. It was a shame that we got delayed because it was dark when we got there. Very dark since there was no electricity, the area lit only by car headlights and generator-powered lights.

Gonzaga Mayor
Mayor of Gonzaga sharing some words with the crowd

While we weren’t able to see how gorgeous the place is, we felt the fine sand on our feet and relished the fresh seafood served for dinner.

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Gonzaga definitely warrants another visit.

Sun City, Sta. Ana

Sun City Villa
Inside our villa at Sun City

Rising in the middle of nowhere is a 7-hectare property with 99 luxury villas and a casino. Formerly opened only to Chinese nationals, this Cagayan Economic Zone Authority operated resort will soon be opening its doors to locals soon.

Sun City Villa bedroom
The bedroom at our Sun City Villa

The villa we stayed in last night has 2 rooms with 2 toilet and baths, a dining and living area. The rooms were decorated in warm, cozy tones. The beds and pillows were super comfortable, specially after a long day of traveling.

Article by Nina Fuentes

Nina doesn't aim to travel to every country in the world -- she just wants to travel to the places that means the most to her. She started traveling in 2006, and hopes to travel for as long as she can. Her travel blog, Just Wandering won the Best Travel Blog in the 2010 Philippine Blog Awards and in the 2011 Nuffnang Asia Pacific Blog Awards.

This Article Has 8 Comments
  1. I’ve been to Tuguegarao once, sadly di ko natry ang pancit batil patong. Pagnakabalik ako for sure will have a taste of that :)

  2. its so beautiful here at santa ana…

  3. Kat March says:

    Any other delicacies worth trying out? Our group is planning a trip North this April?

  4. Martin says:


    I’ve been following your Lakbay Norte posts and I hope I can also visit those places soon. Anyway, is Lakbay Norte a group of bloggers? or is it invitational only to join? :) Thanks in advance.

    • nina says:

      Hi Martin,

      The Lakbay Norte tour is organized by the North Philippines Visitors Bureau, whose aim is to promote tourism in the north. The tour is by invitation only, and is not limited to bloggers. Aside from us, there were also travel writers from travel & lifestyle magazines, inflight magazines, daily broadsheet. This year’s tour also included a television crew for a lifestyle and travel show.

      I hope this answers your question :)

  5. Martin says:

    Thanks for the reply. =)

    I always check out your blog and read your entries. I hope to meet you in the near future and maybe gain helpful insights from you. All the best on your future travels!

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