La Isla Magazine, July 2010 Cover Story
Written by Anton Diaz
Photos by George Tapan
Read First: The Magic of Batanes Isles (Part 1 of 2)
Sabtang Island is 30-45 minutes away from Batan Island via a falowa ride. The falowa is a U-haul boat designed with no balancing beam called katig, so that it can freely dance with the waves. Between Batan and Sabtang is the channel where the Pacific Ocean and the South China Sea meet. In this channel, you can see the waves flowing in different directions, and this is where most people get seasick with the falowa's rocking motion.
Once you arrive in Sabtang and see the heritage towns of Savidug and Chavayan, you will realize that bearing with the rocky falowa trip was worth it. These two areas are the remaining coastal towns composed predominantly of the stone houses Batanes is known for. The houses have walls that are made from stones bonded with lime and their roofs are made from cogon. These towns are next in line for inclusion in the UNESCO World Heritage List in the Philippines.