A Roundabout Motorcycle Tour of Paoay Church

On my way out of Batac, I headed straight to Paoay just some 7 kilometers east of Batac. Paoay is a municipality of Ilocos Norte home to a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Paoay Church.

paoaychurch_cover

Paoay Church is a Roman Catholic church famous for its huge and iconic buttresses. See it from different angles..

Before I got to Paoay, I passed by the Mariano Marcos State University. It looked spacious and worth visiting so I asked the guard for permission to enter the campus. He agreed as soon as I removed my helmet.

marcosuniv_facade

This university was named after former president Fedinand Marcos' father.

This university was named after former president Fedinand Marcos’ father.

Its land area is about 300 hectares. UP Diliman has 500 hectares.

Its land area is about 300 hectares. UP Diliman has 500 hectares.

I just made a quick pass around the campus then left for Paoay Church. Now, I’ve always kept my helmet on except for the few exemptions like inside a university campus but since the church is only 2 kilometers away, I figured I could use this short leg to feel the wind in my face for a change.

I haven’t gotten very far when I spotted a police checkpoint up ahead. It would be stupid to stop and turn back so I just put on my best smile and pulled over. Sure enough, they cited me for not wearing a helmet. I took my helmet out of the top box and explained I was asked to remove it in the university. They let me through and I put it back on and proceeded to Paoay Church also known as San Agustin Church. It is one of the four Baroque Churches in the Philippines. Another one is in Sta Maria, Ilocos Sur which I intended to visit on this trip but missed it.

paoaychurch_front

The first time I was here, I got to admire the church up-close. I even went inside even with all the riding gear I was wearing. This time, I opted to just observe from outside because there are quite a few tourists annoyingly posing for pictures near the church. I stayed saddled up on the motorcycle and took pictures as I go around the church.

At that time, I was the annoying tourist posing for pictures..

At that time, I was the annoying tourist posing for pictures..

No doubt the front view of the church is a sight to behold but the church is as impressive from different angles too.

paoaychurch_leftback

paoaychurch_rightback

paoaychurch_back

A bonus. The ruins of an old building next to the church

A bonus. The ruins of an old building next to the church

If I counted right, there are 11 buttresses supporting each side of the church including the one at the facade and 2 more at the back. The bell tower is another thing. It complements the  whole church as it (well..) towers closely nearby. I also visited two more bell towers on this trip: The Sinking Bell Tower of Laoag and the Bacarra Domeless Bell Tower.

This 3-storey tower is made of coral stone

This 3-storey tower is made of coral stone

The interior of the church is disappointingly bare and empty especially since the exterior sets your expectation very high. The ceiling has been damaged and is no longer there. Instead, the supposedly solemn ambiance inside is disrupted by the distracting metal beams supporting the roof.

Honestly, it could use a makeover..

Honestly, it could use a makeover..

Anyhow, we go to church mainly to pray and honor Him. On the next stop however, I have a totally different expectation.

Now, now ladies... who needs rescuing??

Now, now ladies… who needs rescuing??

My next stop coming up.. The desert of the Philippines!

Advertisements

About Dom de la Torre

The rider is a 20-something Filipino that rides a Honda Wave 125cc underbone. He knows little about motorcycles yet loves the experience going places on two wheels. Rider Ako is a motorcycle-slash-travel blog. The rider not only shares to you travel destinations and what to see there but also the experience of getting there. You will read about the thrills and adventure when he rides solo, the romance of riding in tandem, the camaraderie riding with a group, the excitement participating in events, and anything that he thinks you might find interesting.When he's broke and the fuel's empty, he will share stories about motorcycling how he sees it through his helmet visor.
This entry was posted in Long Ride, Rides, Solo Ride and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s