Best Travel to La Union, Philippines - International Favorite

You get consistent surf year-round in La Union, Philippines, but if you like the waves at their strongest and highest, pick anytime from July to February. If you want to master the waves, San Juan, La Union is home to the Billabong surf school.
Poro Point and Bacnotan are good for beginners. But Urbiztondo is the only place with the surf resorts by the beach, and it’s best for both beginners and pros. You can also try bodyboarding, skimboarding, scuba diving and snorkelling.
Said Luke: “The Surfing action here actually kicks off in January for theManila Surfer’s Cup, followed by the Mabuhay Longboard Cup in February or March, which is the longest running international surfing competition in the Philippines, then the Surfing Break between October and November in time for the short school break, and topping off the year’s surf activity is the Rimat Ti Amianan, a month-long Expo in December with surfing as its highlight. It’s open to all local surfers and you’ll get to see the best of the best surfers. At night, there’s also the beach party.”


La Union is flanked by Ilocos Norte and Ilocos Sur in the North and Pangasinan in the south. Although La Union used to be mainly a jump off point to Vigan, Ilocos Sur or the Hundred Islands of Pangasinan, it is now getting its share of the tourist market, thanks to surfing.


Hike along the Arosip Eco Trail in Bacnotan. It’s also a good place for 4×4 rides and dirt bikes. There are waterfalls like Balay Anito Falls in the town of Santol, and Lon-Oy Springs in Barangay Lon-Oy and Bayabas in San Gabriel. In the dry season, you can camp in Tappuakan River in Cares, Pugo Town.

Hike to the Bolikewkew Rice Terraces in Burgos or get a thrill at Tuddingan Falls where people jump from the top of the falls down 70feet to the water base. And if you love biking, Luke says Capitol Hill in San Fernando City is the best place to go. “Most of the bikers use that trail for practice for competitions because of its zigzag road and it’s uphill then downhill,” he said.

There’s also the La Union Botanical Garden in San Fernando to enjoy the different flowers and plants sourced from various countries.
Live music and bonfire nights on the beach are held every month. These tend to be organized regularly during monthly surfing competitions. Ask your resort for details.


La Union’s history told of Japanese, Chinese and Moro pirates invading its shore and leaving a trail of destruction. Pindangan Church Ruins in the City of San Fernando is testament to this. When the pirates came to Pindangan (Ilocano term that means a place where meats are salted and hung to dry) sometime in the 1800s, they pillaged the place and burned down the church, built in 1764. What remains of the church now are the brick walls, the flying buttresses and an old well made of corals and bricks right by the left wing of the church.

St. Catherine Parish in Luna, built by the Augustinians in the 19th century, is home to the miraculous Our Lady of Namacpacan, which draws devotees from all walks of life.

Capitol Hill and the Freedom Park/Heroes Hill, the seat of the local government, where the governor holds office, has the best view in town. The Romanesque-inspired building sits on top of a hill and from its verandah, which is also a view deck, you can see the city of San Fernando and the China Sea. Just right outside the corner of the building’s east wing is Freedom Park or Heroes Hill. Walk up the hill’s 100 steps to see the busts of Filipino heroes.

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