BESIDES being one of the most popular tourist destinations in Northern Luzon, Vigan in Ilocos Sur is a model for sustainability inspired by heritage, resulting in the preservation of its environment and assuring it can also be enjoyed by the next generations.
Vigan, a United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (Unesco) heritage site, is one of the destinations that Victory Liner promotes through its “Know Your North” campaign.
“As a Unesco heritage site, a lot of lessons can be learned from Vigan. Among this is heritage can be an anchor for sustainability. For one, Vigan’s being aUnesco) heritage site made its stakeholders and visitors realize the need to be more aware of the pitfalls of unabated urban development and heavily-commercialized tourism, ” said Victory Liner Director Gabby Malvar.
Victory Liner and Vigan also have some things in common, he said.
“Both Victory Liner and Vigan have survived turbulent times, with Vigan dating back to the 16th century. And today, Victory Liner and Vigan have demonstrated resiliency amid the coronavirus disease 2019 and even the strong storms that have visited the country every year,” he said.
Vigan’s biggest draw is still its setting because its buildings fuse Asian and European colonial design and architecture, with some dating back to the 16th century. And since it has not fallen victim to rapid urbanization, it still provides a rustic setting that tired urbanites wish to experience. Calle Crisologo has emerged as one of the more popular destinations in Vigan, offering a glimpse of the city’s rich past.
The heritage site also hosts the St. Paul Metropolitan Cathedral that traces its roots to 1614.
When it comes to food offerings, visitors to Vigan can look forward to indigenous or native offerings ranging from the popular Ilocos empanada and bagnet, to pinakbet pizza, among others.
Malvar said that by promoting Vigan in its Know Your North campaign, more and more Filipinos will also start to appreciate the other heritage sites in the Philippines, whether these are part of the Unesco’s list.
“Heritage sites also help establish our national identity and roots. And in this age of social media, there is an urgent need to teach our younger and future generations the uniqueness of our identity and culture through these heritage sites,” he added.