Cultural Sites

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San Carlos Borromeo Church – Declared in 2001 by the National Museum and National Commission for Culture and Arts as one of the 26 churches recognized as cultural icons because of their beauty and excellent state of preservation.  It was built in 1873 by Fr. Cresencio Polo using limestone walling in baroque style and cogon roofing.

Nakamaya Burial Site – These boat-shaped grave markers are testimonies to the beliefs of pre-historic Ivatans who believe in life after death.  The general direction of the burial graves point towards the sea which is man's final resting place, according to Ivatan folktale.  The radiocarbon tests on the human skeletons place it to be somewhere between 355-70 BP.

Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception Cathedral – The seat of the Roman Catholic Church in the province, this is the first parish church to be built in the province in the early 18th century, made up to cogon grass roofing.  It was also the first to have galvanized iron roofing in the 1890's.  The feast of its patron saint, Sto. Domingo de Guzman, is celebrated by the Ivasays every August 8.

Liveng/Hedgerows – This quaint quilt-like patterns divide farm lots, protect crops from wind and animals, control soil erosion, host migrant birds and other species, and provide wood and reeds for domestic use.  They constitute, together with land fallowing and organic farming, sustainable agriculture in Batanes.  The reeds are also used as ceiling materials for vernacular Ivatan houses.

Racuh-a-idi Old Settlement – One of the largest pre-Spanish settlements on the eastern part of Batan island.  Today, one can still see the stone arrangements and rock foundations of the early Ivatan house.

San Jose de Obrero Church – Built in 1784 by Fr. Jose Fausto de Cuevas, it is the only church in Batanes with a separate belltower constructed 30 years later. The present facade was built by Fr. Fabian Martin in 1866-1869. Located by the coastal area, it is here where katipunero revolutionaries commanded by Captain Perea landed on September 18, 1898 to liberate the province from the Spaniards.

Itbud Village – This is where the best-tasting local wine called palek comes from and where extant maytuab and sinadumparan houses still stand.  It had the largest population on Batan’s southeastern part in the 18th century due to stable water supply spring and a well-fortified idjang.

Savidug Barrio – A village which abounds in traditional houses, it is the site where the endangered black face spoonbill was sighted years ago and continues to fly in the area.

Chavayan Barrio – A visit to Batanes in incomplete without immersing oneself in this village, the cradle of Ivatan culture and heritage. Famous for its rows of old houses, narrow streets, and old sites, Chavayan is likely what will leave lasting memories on your visit. Its chapel, the only church in Batanes still roofed with cogon grass, is a stone’s throw away from the shore and it makes you feel closer to God in this solemn remote place.

Sta. Maria Immaculate Church – Built in 1845, it took more than 40 years to complete and be blessed in 1888 by Fr. Manuel Blasco.

Nahili du Votox – An ancient settlement with boat-shaped burial markers. Its Idjang has a spectacular view of Dinem island and eastern Itbayat. It reflects the material cultural remains of ancient maritime people.

Torongan Cave – The most ancient dwelling place in Batanes, believed to be the first landing place of the Austronesians from Formosa in 4000 BC. The Torongan Hill is an area where stone boat-shaped burial markers are found and is believed to be the burial ground of the cave’s ancient settlers.

Torongan Hill – An area where stone boat-shaped burial markers are found.  This area is believed to be the burial ground of the ancient settlers of the Torongan cave.

Vernacular Houses – these are combinations of European and Itbayat architecture with thick walls of stone and lime and several layers of cogon for roofing. These Ivatan houses are adapted for strong typhoons, earthquakes and other calamities, and can withstand the harshest winter winds from December to February.


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2024-07-22 14:05