The most famous landmark here in Paoay is the St. Augustine's Church in Paoay built in 1684 and was completed 200 years later. It is one of the oldest churches in the Philippines built during Spanish-era. The bell tower was made out of coral stones. It is now one of UNESCO's World Heritage Sites.
This is the famed lake beside the famed Malacanang of the North Mansion, it is a fresh water lake about 470 hectares in size and the shape is irregular. This lake had many legends on it's origin and one of them is that the whole area used to be an affluent town punished for its obsessive attachment to wealth and power. Torrential rains flooded and drowned the entire town. Some local folks say fishermen caught fish with gold rings, a testament to the extravant lifestyle of the submerged village. Today there are various recreational activities on the lake like fishing (tilapia and black bass), boating, kayak, swimming and a lot more.
Malacanang Ti Amianan (Malacanang of the North) is one of the 29 Palaces that Former Dictator Ferdinand Marcos Built During His 20 year reign. Work here started in 1975 and the Palace incorporated the best of Ilocano and Spanish Designs. It was Opened in 1977 with great fanfare. This two-storey building sits on a five-hectare property and was designed for entertaining large crowds. It has grand living rooms on both floors, and seven spacious bedrooms including the two master bedrooms of the First Couple - Ferdinand and Imelda. It also has an expansive terrace, and beautiful garden with a magnificent view of the Paoay Lake. At Present it is A Marcos Memorabilia Museum. Also A Popular Venue for Weddings and Wedding Receptions. Entrance Fee is 20 Pesos and is Open from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm daily.
The St. Augustine Church, or more popularly called Paoay Church, is famous for its distinctive Gothic, Baroque and Oriental architecture. The church was dubbed "Earthquake Baroque" because of its fortress-like structure, with 24 massive buttresses designed to withstand the destructive forces of earthquakes. It is inscribed in UNESCO's World Heritage list (together with 3 other Philippine baroque churches: Nuestra Senora in Santa Maria, Ilocos Sur; San Augustin in Manila; Miag-ao Church in Iloilo) in recognition of its unique architectural style which is a reinterpretation of European Baroque by Chinese and Philippine craftsmen.
Paoay Church is part of the UNESCO World Heritage List. During the Philippine Revolution of 1898 it's coralstone belltower was used by the Katipuneros as an observation post.
You can also visit the ruins of an old convent situated nearby.
St. Agustin Church or more popularly known as Paoay Church is included in UNESCO's World Heritage list due to its unique architectural style which is "Earthquake Baroque" because of its structure designed to withstand earthquake.
A few meters away is a three-storey bell tower which serves as a look-out point for Katipuneros against the Spaniards and also by the guerillas during the Japanese occupation in WWII.
You will pass Suba Beach when you are on your way to Malacanang of the North and Paoay Lake. It is actually a small secluded beach - along the main road. Did not see anyone hang out there. We stopped by the road side, sat the the road embankment - enjoyed the scenery and continued out journey to Malacanang of the North.
See two more pics attached.
Paoay Lake, at the border of Laoag City is where the grand Malacanang of the North is located. Legend has it that the lake formerly the site of the town, submerged as divine condemnatin of the inhabitants' extreme materialism. This is a natural lake - the waters are calm and blue, giving a perfect backdrop for Malacanang of the North. From most of the windows and balcony of Malacanang of the North, you can enjoy the view of the Paoay lake.
See more pics attached.
This beautiful house of two storey is located in one of the most beautiful sites - overlooking the legendary Paoay lake. This is the official residence of the late President Ferdinand Marcos - opened for public viewing in 1986. When you arrived at the gatehouse, walk a short distance to the residence. You will need to pay an entrance fee - 20pesos. A guide will follow you to explain or answer questions pertaining to history of this residence. Furnitures, fittings, beddings and furnishings are all well kept.
I have captured quite a bit of pics on the Malacanang to share with you - see travelogues in 2 parts on The Grand Malacanang of the North.
The "earthquake baroque" style Paoay Church is one of UNESCO's Heritage sites. Next to the Church, a couple of meters away is the 3-storey coral stone belltower. These two structues are surrounded with a patch of nice garden - lots of students, children hang out here. Many will sit near to the Church pavement to relax.
Write-up on this massive, fortress-like Church : The construction of this Church was laid in 1704. The edifice was the masterpiece of the Paoayenos who were know for their engineering skills and diligence. The lower part of the facade was made of stuccoed bricks. The mansonry was of brick and rubble joined by lime mortar, the hardness of which was due to the sugarcane juice used in mixing the materials. The details were said to be made by mixing sand, lime, sugarcane juice (locally called the "bennal") and boiling with mangeao ("sablot") leaves, leather and rice straws for two nights.
The inauguration of this Church was on Feb 28, 1896.
See more pictures of the Church in my travelogue.
Paoay Church, included in the UNESCO's world heritage list, is one of the very few Spanish churches designed by Filipinos. This was a rare feat at a time when Filipinos were considered inferior by colonial Spain.
Popularly known as Malacañang of the North, the 2-storey stone and wood mansion was built on a slightly elevated area overlooking Lake Paoay. Designed as a resthouse, it has wide windows as if to welcome the breeze from the lake into the house. And, even wider verandas for a good view of the lake.
The house seems to be a "display window" of antique furnitures, chandeliers and paintings. Points of interest are the long dining table, canopy beds, and grand staircase.
A guide is available to tour you around the mansion, although optional as you may look around by yourself. Admission is P20 and it is open from 9am-12noon and 1-4pm, Tuesday to Sunday.