Apayao - Finding the Spanish Church Ruins of Pudtol

The province of Apayao is formerly part of the larger province of Kalinga Apayao until it was divided into 2 separate provinces on February 14, 1995 under Republic Act No. 7878. It is one "off-the-beaten" destination that most travelers hardly visit. That's why when I got the chance to travel to Northern Luzon some time last year, I see to it that I include this province in my itinerary. We traveled for 4 hours from Laoag, Ilocos Norte to the sleepy town of Pudtol in Apayao in search for the Spanish Church Ruins.

The town of Pudtol is about 20 kilometers from the junction (Luna) of the national highway. The church ruins is located at Barangay Emilia, a few meters walk from the municipal hall and the public market.

Upon arrival at the town, we just asked around and was directed to where the ruins is. We took the alley at the back of the municipal hall which led us the the new town church. The ruins is standing just beside the new church.

According to some sources from the internet, in 1604, Dominican missionaries established Pudtol as its first Christian settlement in the province. This stone church which is now a ruins was built in 1684. The church with thick walls is really quite old. Only the back and the side walls remained at the site. It has a small altar at the middle with at few benches at the center.

We stayed at the site for about 30-40 minutes checking on the ruins and taking photos. Then we walked back to the public market to have some halo-halo for snacks!

There's another church ruins 22 KMS away from the town center. It is located in Barangay Mataguisi, also in the municipality of Pudtol. Since we don't have much time, we decided not to go there anymore. Instead, we just waited for the jeepney at the terminal to get back to the national highway (Junction Luna). We want to be in Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte (2.5 hours) before it gets dark.

From Manila, ride a GV Florida or RCJ bus (both with terminal in EspaƱa Blvd., near UST) going to Junction Luna, via Laoag and Claveria. Travel time is about 12-13 hours, fare is around 700 - 800 pesos. From Junction Luna (aka Junction Libertad in Abulog, Cagayan), ride a jeepney to the town center of Pudtol, travel time is about 30 minutes and fare is around 30 pesos.

If you're coming from Laoag City, take a van to Claveria, Cagayan (2.5 hours). From there, take another van to Junction Luna (1 hour). Then take a jeepney to Pudtol (30 minutes).

If you're coming from Tuguegarao City, you may take a van to Junction Luna, then take a jeepney to Pudtol, Apayao.

For faster travel, you could take a 1-hour plane ride to Laoag or Tuguegarao from Manila.

More photos on Pinoy AdvenTurista's Facebook Page, click here.

This trip happened on May 27, 2012 during my 3-day trip in Northern Luzon. Apayao is the 63nd province on my list.

  • Finding the Spanish Church Ruins of Pudtol



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Pinoy Adventurista is one of the Top Travel Blogs in the Philippines and the World. In 2013, he visited all the 81 provinces in the Philippines.