The island-province of Batanes was created by a series of volcanic activities and other geologic forces millions of years ago. Batanes lies at the northernmost tip of the Philippines, where the Pacific Ocean merges with the South China Sea. It is composed of three major islands, namely: Batan which contains the capital town of Basco, Sabtang, and Itbayat. Close by are seven islets including Amianan, which is the closest to Formosa. Thus, Batanes has been identified as the country’s potential gateway to East China.
The gateway to the historic north where centuries-old churches and cathedrals still toll their bells to greet the sunrise. A window to a breathtaking landscape that stretches from desert dunes to sun-soaked beaches.
Puerto Princesa’s pride is easily the Puerto Princesa Subterranean River (or Underground River), a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the New 7 Wonders of Nature. The 8.2-kilometer river, said to be the longest navigable underground river in the world, winds its way underneath a mountain range, through the St. Paul Underground River Cave, and then goes out into the West Philippine Sea. The journey through the cave system alone is 24 kilometers long. The entire area where the Underground River is located is actually a national park and a model of biodiversity. More than 800 plant species, including almost 300 trees, 195 bird species, 30 mammals, 19 reptiles, and 8 bat species call this area home.
Legazpi City is home to Mount Mayon, an active volcano known for its near perfect cone shape and is the favorite choice of mountaineers looking for a challenging climb. For a true adventure, explore the caves of Hoyop-Hoyopan and Calabidong in Camalig. See the lava-buried ruins of Cagsawa Church or Bicol's oldest church, San Francisco, built in 1578. Relax at the Tiwi hot spring or Busay's thermal spring and waterfalls.
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