The Trails of Baluarte!

We arrived in Vigan, Ilocos Sur last Friday at 3:30 pm after a gruelling 9-hour trip from Manila. Betty, BDM-er Mel Severino, Roselle (runningdiva) and myself were slated to run the Vigan Heritage 15k Run that Sunday and we were all going to be guests at Betty and Ral’s ancestral home at the Kamestizoan District, just a stone’s throw away from the Vigan Heritage Village. Roselle would be arriving at 9:00am the following morning, Saturday while Mel would be checking-in after lunch.  

It was nice to be back strolling around the shops and ancestral houses along Crisostomo Street which they now call the Heritage Village. I remember being in Vigan last year but not much have changed, except that some of the old houses were noticeably restored and painted. I was just contented to look around and i noticed new buildings that didn’t blend well with the surroundings like the Max restaurant which is so modern! Anyway, after a few more walks, we headed towards Burgos Plaza and went to a kiosk and ordered their famous “empanada” which still had that distinct ilocos-empanada taste!  

Crisologo Street, Heritage Village

We were back at the house just before 7:30pm as most of the shops and eateries were closed by now. Sad thing about this place is that they don’t seem to have a night life. We had a sumptuous dinner of “Bagnet”, “Pinakbet” and some brandy to wash it down before we called it a night. Betty had then suggested that we go for an early morning run the following day and explore some of the city while running.    

We woke up at about 5:30am the following morning and after having two cups of coffee each, Betty and i donned our running gear and headed out of the gate and started our run. We had no idea where to run at first, then Betty remembered that Baluarte, Congressman Chavit Singson’s theme park and habitat which houses some of the rarest and most exotic animals from all over the world was just a few kilometers away. 

More surprising to us was a presence of a trail that was located at the rear side of the 80 hectare theme park enclave. Here is our exploration of the trails: 

On to Baluarte

Entering Caoayan town

Amidst all election posters, the signage to Baluarte

Posing at the entrance

A chapel at the main entrance

Ostrich above greets us

Now inside the Baluarte

Betty continues the run inside

Road to the right part of the theme park

Towards the back side entrance

Going towards the trail's descent

Downhill trail with the South China Sea in foreground

Betty leads the way downwards

Part of the trail

Betty at the edges

A new discovery for us so we thread forward

The surface was a little wet brought about by rains the previous night so our shoes got heavy with mud

The trails were continuously zigzagging

Now out in the open

Towards the foothills

Charging the hilly terrain

Trying to catch up

Into our 4th kilometer

Betty getting the hang of trail running, mud and all!

Get the mud off your shoe first!:-)

Another incline

I do the catching up this time

Taking a pose, catching some breath

On to the woods

Dried leaves all over the surface

We we're now on our 7th km

A sudden uphill!

A plant in the middle of the trail while Betty scrubs off mud from her shoe

The trail ahead

A seemingly endless trail

Taking a walk break

The trails was so serene and the weather was mild



18 responses to “The Trails of Baluarte!

    • Ditto, Joy! T’was nice meeting you and looking forward to seeing you again in future races.:-)

  1. are you sure you and betty really had fun? running the trail in baluarte …… without me? i dont think so…. hahahaha.. sa totoo lang…..waaaaahhhh na miss ko yun !!!! di bale on our next vigan run i will be there……. see you around uncle….:)

    • Tonet, i hope you will be there next time. Baka naman may idahilan ka na naman, ninang sa binyag, ninang sa kasal, reyna sa sagala at kung ano-ano pang ek-ek! haha.. See you soon!

  2. thanks sir for coming in Viva Vigan Heritage Run last may 2… actually Im new to the world of running at yan ang kauna unahan kong sinalihan, 10k, hoping makapunta po kayo ulit dito sa VIGAN….

    • Thank you Crossroads! The place, the views and the great race experience would definitely lure us back next year. I’m going to write a short review of the race as soon as i get some free time from work.:-)

  3. Just amazingly beautiful! I am so envious…!!! I live in a beautiful place… but, wow!! Love you pics and that you share them with us!

    • Thanks, Tammy! There are so many beautiful places to run but so little time to do them. There’s more to explore and i hope to be able to share them soon!:-)

  4. Pingback: 2nd Viva Vigan Heritage Run 2011 « JAZZRUNNER

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