Malacañang of the North

North Luzon

In a peaceful location next to the scenic Paoay Lake, the opulent former estate where the Marcos family spent their holidays is open to the public. The impressive house, with its cavernous sala (living room), capiz-shell windows and other colonial touches, provides a glimpse into the family’s lavish lifestyle; the golf course where the Marcos used to tee-off now belongs to Fort Ilocandia.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby North Luzon attractions

1. Sand Dunes

1.93 MILES

Located along the coast near Laoag, the seemingly endless sand dunes sprawl south all the way to Paoay. Access is easiest to the La Paz stretch, only 15…

2. Paoay Church

4.74 MILES

Nineteen kilometres southwest of Laoag is North Luzon’s most famous church. Unesco World Heritage–listed Paoay Church was built in classic earthquake…

4. Sinking Bell Tower

5.78 MILES

Laoag's main architectural attraction is the Sinking Bell Tower, with what is presently a hobbit-sized doorway. Built by Augustine friars to accommodate…

5. Museo Ilocos Norte

5.84 MILES

Housed in the historic Tabacalera warehouse, the snazzy Museo Ilocos Norte is one of the better ethnographic museums in the Philippines. It houses a large…

6. Marcos Museum


The house where Ferdinand Marcos was born on 11 September 1917 takes pride of place in the small village of Sarrat, 15km east of Laoag. Displays embellish…

7. Juan Luna Shrine

14.43 MILES

It's worth stopping in Badoc, halfway between Vigan and Laoag (about an hour by bus), for a peek inside the restored ancestral home of Juan Luna, arguably…