Paoay Sand Dunes Adventure
When in Ilocos Norte, be sure to drop by Paoay for a unique experience.
Paoay is home to the ever famous sand dunes. It's quite a big stretch of dunes. There are several points set-up where you can go on a 4x4 off-road challenge, or if you want to get down and dirty, then there's sand boarding.
Amusing fact: These amazing sand dunes in Paoay are the same dunes where they shot Pinoy movies like Panday and Temptation Island. Cool, huh.
We arrived a little past noon and the sun was beating down hard on us. Without slapping on some sunscreen, we hopped off our vehicle. I was all set to just look at the 4x4 vehicles and at the dunes. I didn't really think we were going to ride on the 4x4 because well... there are days when The Memet's a bit close-fisted when it comes to money. A 30-minute ride out on the dunes cost P1500 per 4x4, we were told. It isn't much when you're a big group and everyone's chipping in. There was just the 2 of us. Haha!
So yeah. I guess The Memet was feeling rather adventurous, so we went for it.
No one else was there that day. Just us, the 4x4 guys, and a wide expanse of dunes. Coolness. It was also pretty awesome that aside from the driver, another guy went with us. He became our unofficial photographer. Haha!
Now here are a few tips that no one bothered to tell me before we went to conquer the sand dunes of Paoay:
1. Slather on some sunscreen. Especially if you happen to get there between 10am-3pm. I don't know why I seem to have been lacking some common sense that day. Hahaha!
2. Whip out your sun shades so you don't have to squint. It'll also help keep sand out of your eyes.
3. Don't bring unnecessary gadgets. There's a big chance they'll fall and take a tumble around the vehicle. Keep your hands free of unnecessary stuff so that you can have a firm grip on the bars and avoid falling or whatever.
While we were there, our driver also shared a pretty helpful tip to folks who happen to drive 4x4 SUVs. DO NOT ATTEMPT TO USE YOUR 4x4 CITY SUVs ON THE DUNES. Yeah. It doesn't matter if your brand spanking new Mitsubishi Montero is a 4x4 drive. It's most likely not equipped with the right set of tires. And it's most likely too heavy, so your SUV will just get stuck out there and then the locals would have to fish you out of the dunes. Seriously.
This tip was based on a real story. Apparently, a group of cocky young guys got to the dunes close to early evening and thinking that their brand new 4x4 Montero could handle the dunes, they went out there and well... got stuck. Remember, it's a wide expanse of sand with no one around after hours, so it's a good thing they were found at all with the daylight gone. Aside from all the trouble, they also had to get their engine fixed because apparently, getting your vehicle's engine submerged in sand isn't a good thing.
But enough of that. Again, when in Ilocos Norte, please drop by Paoay to check out the sand dunes. Hehe! :p