Palanan is a coastal town in Isabela Province enriched with natural resources. It has fine white-sand beaches teeming with sealife and the largest remaining rainforest in the country. Palanan is a wonderful place to visit when you’re in the province of Isabela.
1. Blue Lagoon
The Blue Lagoon is one of the most popular attractions in Isabela Province. The water here is clear and fishes can be seen, implying that it is connected to the ocean.
Stay here for an hour or two to swim and relax in the clear water. Simple cottages are built beside the lagoon where you can leave your things.
From the town proper of Palanan, the Blue Lagoon is about 20 minutes away via tricycle ride. The trike will drop you off exactly at the lagoon site.
2. Aguinaldo Shrine
Aguinaldo Shrine is a historical monument located in the town proper of Palanan. It’s the place where Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo made his last stand against the Americans.
Across the Aguinaldo Shrine, you will see the St. Mary Magdalene Parish which has belfry with 3-century old bells.
3. Dicotcotan Beach
Dictocotan Beach is a 3-kilometer long beach with sandy shores, its water filled with corals and seagrass beds. You can see various types of fishes here, as well as marine turtles. There have also been sightings of pointed nosed dolphins and hump back whales in the area.
Dicotcotan is actually a Palanan word meaning “to sink”, which refers to its soft sands.
When exploring Palanan, you may opt to stay at Dicotcotan Beach where you can find beach resorts, such as Bilay Makadawi.
4. Didadungan Beach
Didadungan Beach is another fine white-sand beach in Palanan. As with Dicotcotan Beach, you can see various fishes and other sea creatures in the area. It’s an ideal place for snorkeling and diving.
5. Dumagat Village
Dumagat Village is a seaside community home to an ethnic group called Agtas. The Agtas are one of the earliest inhabitants in the Philippines, arriving here at about 30,000 to 60,000 years ago. In the present, they live a semi-nomadic lifestyle, roaming in the Sierra Madre mountains and building settlements beside rivers and seas.
When going to Dumagat Village to visit the locals, make sure to respect and practice cultural sensitivity as visitors.
From Dicotcotan Beach, it’s possible to trek to Dumagat Village and Diago Beach beside it. The trek takes about 30-minutes, and you’ll pass by rice paddies, hills and the occasional local houses in the area.
6. Diago Beach
Diago Beach is the beach across Dumagat Village. It has finer, whiter sand than that in Dicotcotan Beach and is filled with rock formations.
7. Disadsad Falls
Disadsad Falls is a clear, pristine waterfalls located in Barangay, Maligaya. This is a great place to cool off the day’s heat.
If coming from Dicotcotan Beach, you need to take a boat (15-20 min) to the jump-off point and then trek for 1 hour to reach Disadsad Falls.
8. Palanan River
Palanan River is one of the best treasures of Isabela. The river stretches long, with clear, pure and potable water. The river is also surrounded by lush forests.
You can swim and raft in the Palanan River.
9. Sunken ship at Digoyo Point
MV Karagatan is a historical ship in the 1970s. It carried arms and weapons from China to communist groups in the country.
The skeleton remains of this ship can still be seen during a dive at Digoyo Point. Digoyo Point is also a great place to swim and snorkel, with pristine coral gardens.
Other attractions in Palanan, Isabela
Aside from these, here are other places you can visit at Palanan:
- Digoyo (or Hanno) Lake
- Kanasamuyan Creek and Cave
- Culasi Beach
- Disangkilan and Sad-Sad Falls
- Kanataw (or Canatao) Lake
Has this guide been helpful to you? Do you have more recommendations on places to see in Palanan, Isabela? Let us know in the comments below!