I’ve seen Chavit Singson many times, on TV, while playing with his pet, a tiger.
You know Chavit Singson? The former Governor of Ilocos Sur who has rose to fame during former President Erap Estrada’s time. Controversial times. But I am not here to talk about his past and even politics. I am just checking if you really know him. Hahaha! Going back to the tiger. The videos were shot from his privately owned zoo in Vigan called Baluarte.
This is just a 10 minute travel from the city center of Vigan. Some travelers said that you can actually walk from the city going to Baluarte. As for us, since we rented a van for our Ilocos trip, Baluarte was the first spot to explore when we arrived in Vigan.
By the time we entered the zoo, I instantly noticed that some animals are just freely roaming around the huge facility like deers and camels. Baluarte is themed as an interactive wildlife sanctuary.
At the center of Baluarte is a huge replica of dinosaurs with the name of the property on it. It’s a good spot for photo ops.
We then explored some spots in Baluarte. Some of my friends interacted and even talked with Parrots. Hahaha! This type of bird can be so funny at times, mimicking whatever you say.
Just a couple of years ago, another interesting spot in Baluarte was opened to public, this is the Safari Gallery. It’s a building inside Baluarte where visitors can witness mounted and preserved animals. Singson is a hunter and this is where he shares to people his prized collections. Though, I don’t agree with killing these animals but if you happen to visit Baluarte, it might be interesting for you to take a look of these items at Safari Gallery.
One good thing about Baluarte is it’s all free. No entrance fee. Visitors can even have some picnic lunch there. All in all, Baluarte is a good place for kids to see and even interact with animals. They will definitely learn something new about animals in the Philippines and even some parts of the world.
Some of the animals in Baluarte are Camels, deers, monkeys, different types of birds and even tiger (caged of course). There are also some different types of snakes and pythons.
We had a good time in Baluarte. It’s not every day that you see camels you know hahaha! I hope when I go back to the north, I can bring my niece, nephew and future kids there. Kids will surely enjoy the attractions in Baluarte. And I hope that this remains free for all. It’s good that despite of hullaballoos that Chavit experienced in his political career in the past, he is still a businessman and he has Baluarte as his way of giving back to the people of Ilocos Sur.
How to get to Baluarte?
It’s easy for those who want to travel via DIY. Bus companies like Dominion and Partas have trips going to Vigan, Ilocos Sur. It’s actually going to Laoag, but your drop off point is Vigan. From town proper, ride a tricycle going to Baluarte. You may also check out and choose a packaged tour or group travel, there are a lot of this service offered. Just check google or social media.
More Facts About Baluarte
Open every day from 7AM to 6PM.
Privately owned but free for all. No entrance fee
Free picnic Areas
There is also a Gallery in the property.
Address: Brgy. Salindeg, Vigan City, Ilocos Sur
Contact Number: (077) 722-7186
Baluarte, Vigan Map