Ilocos Norte



Provincial Vision:

“Narimat nga arapaap, intay’ amin maragpat!”

(A brighter future, we can all achieve!)

Provincial Mission:

  • “SAPASAP A SALUN-AT” (Accessible Healthcare for All)
  • “NARIMAT NGA AGLAWLAW” (A Brighter Environment)
  • “AGTULTULOY A TULONG PARA MANNALON KEN MANGNGALAP” (Continuing Assistance to Farmers and Fisherfolks)
  • “NAURNOS A TRANSPORTASION” (Organized Transportation)
  • “ADADU A PAGPUONAN KEN NARUAY A PANGGEDAN” (More Investments and Jobs)

Ilocos Norte Brief History

Long before the coming of the Spaniards, there already existed an extensive region consisting of the present provinces of Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur, Abra and La Union) renowned for its gold mines. Merchants from Japan and China would often visit the area to trade gold with beads, ceramics and silk. The inhabitants of the region, believed to be of Malay origin, called their place “samtoy”, from “sao mi toy, which literally meant “our language”.

In 1571, when the Spanish conquistadors had Manila more or less under their control, they began looking for new sites to conquer. Legaspi’s grandson, Juan de Salcedo, volunteered to lead one of these expeditions. Together with 8 armed boats and 45 men, the 22 year old voyager headed north.

On June 13, 1572, Salcedo and his men landed in Vigan and then proceeded towards Laoag, Currimao and Badoc. As they sailed along the coast, they were surprised to see numerous sheltered coves (“looc”) where the locals lived in harmony. As a result, they named the region “Ylocos” and its people “Ylocanos”.

As the Christianization of the region grew, so did the landscape of the area. Vast tracks of land were utilized for churches and bell towers in line with the Spanish mission of “bajo las campanas”. In the town plaza, it was not uncommon to see garrisons under the church bells. The colonization process was slowly being carried out.

The Spanish colonization of the region, however, was never completely successful. Owing to the abusive practices of many Augustinian friars, a number of Ilocanos revolted against their colonizers. Noteworthy of these were the Dingras uprising (1589) and Pedro Almasan revolt (San Nicolas, 1660). In 1762, Diego Silang led a series of battles aimed at freeing the Ilocanos from the Spanish yoke. When he died from an assassin’s bullet, his widow Gabriela continued the cause. Unfortunately, she too was captured and hanged. In 1807, the sugar cane (“basi”) brewers of Piddig rose up in arms to protest the government’s monopoly of the wine industry. In 1898, the church excommunicated Gregorio Aglipay for refusing to cut off ties with the revolutionary forces of Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo. Unperturbed, he established the “Iglesia Filipina Independiente”. Aglipay’s movement and the national sentiment it espoused helped restore the self-respect of many Filipinos.

“The great increase in population from 1715 to 1818 from 18,980 to 282,845 made the administration of the province very difficult. Due to the excessive monopolies and forced labor, there were several uprisings: first by the people of Dingras in 1589; one that was led by Pedro Almazan in 1616; the revolt of Diego Silang in 1762-1763; by Ambaristo in 1788; by Pedro Mateo in 1808 and uprising of Sarrat in 1815. For this reason, the division of the Ilocos into two provinces was recommended by the local authorities. On February 2, 1818, a Spanish Royal Decree was promulgated dividing the Province of Ilocos Norte from Ilocos Sur. Laoag City, which was then the biggest center of population, was made the capital of Ilocos Norte.”

Quick Facts

Getting around
The most convenient way of going around the province is by booking a tour van through a registered travel agent or your hotel. Average price is P3, 500.00 for the whole day, inclusive of a private chauffeur. If you’re more adventurous, you can commute by bus for approximately P25.00-P60.00 per passenger. Jeeps that ply the common routes have an average fee of P11.00 per kilometre. Tricycles offer the easiest way to get around town, especially if short distance are involved. A P11.00 payment is charged for the first kilometer, after which it is negotiable. If you have time to spare, we recommend a calesa ride around the city. Minimum charge is P15.00 for the first kilometer.

Where to stay
The kind of accommodations you get differ from an area to another. Laoag, Pagudpud, San Nicolas and Currimao have the greater concentration of hotels. Higher class hotels can be found outside Laoag while budget and business hotels are within the city proper. Pagudpud resorts range from laid-back to activity-filled options. If a homestay is more of what you’ve looking for, make sure to check if they’re registered or reserve thru trusted booking sites.

Quick facts

GEOGRAPHY Ilocos Norte has a land of 3,662, bordered by Ilocos Sur (south), Abra (southeast), Cagayan (east), and South China Sea (west). CITIES 2 ( Laoag & Batac)

TOWNS 21 (Adams, Bacarra, Badoc, Bangui, Banna, Burgos, Carasi, Currimao, Dingras, Dumalneg, Marcos, Nueva Era, Pagudpud, Paoay, Pasuquin, Piddig, Pinili, San Nicolas, Sarrat, Solsona & Vintar)

PROXIMITY By air: 45 minutes from Manila; 55 minutes from Kaoshiung; 80 minutes from Guangzhou, Hongkong & Taipei; and 2.15 hours from Shanghai. By land: 8 hours from Manila; 4 hours from Baguio

FLIGHTS Domestic: Manila (daily) International: Guangdong (chartered)

SEASONS Dry (November to April) and wet (May to October)

CLIMATE Average temperature is 26.8C

POPULATION 568, 017 (2010)

LANGUAGE Iloko (Ilocano) is the common language, although English and Filipino are widely used.

RELIGION Roman Catholic: 54.20%; Aglipay: 28.82%; Evangelicals: 5.12%; Iglesia ni Cristo: 4.37%; Others: 7.49% (end 2007)

CLOTHING Thin clothing is recommended, although a jacket may be necessary in the evenings during the cooler months (November – February)

ELECTRICITY 220 volts, 60 cycles.

WATER Drink only bottled or boiled water.


In case of Emergency


Office of the Governor

+63 (77) 772-1212 loc 131
(77) 770-3966 / 772 – 1772

Office of the Governor – Records Office

+63 (77) 772-1212 loc 133 /

Provincial Social Welfare Office

+63 (77) 772-1212 loc 146 and 145

Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (PDRRMC)

+63 (77) 772-1212 loc 151

Tourism Office

+63-77-772- 1212 loc. 157, +63-77-770-4242 /

Communications and Media Office


Web Admin (IT Office)

+63-77-772- 1212 loc. 136

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