The pottery industry in Iguig (Photo by Martin San Diego)
The pottery industry in Iguig (Photo by Martin San Diego)

To travel is not only to see. It is to feel, to hear, and to taste. There is a compulsion to take a piece of every place back home. Hence, the thriving industry of souvenir items. Taking into consideration environmental preservation and sustainable tourism, there are certainly more preferable items than others. Fortunately, when you’re heading to the northern province of Cagayan, there are more than one pasalubong that does not only help sustain the community but also perfectly encapsulates the province’s identity. Here are three:

Iguig Pottery
Iguig Pottery
  1. Traditional Pottery

In the town of Iguig, there is an entire community of traditional potters. Using only their hands to mold intricate designs, these craftsmen create one of the most unique souvenir items this side of the Philippines. For as low as Php10, you can take home your very own handmade pottery in the form of a plant pot or an ashtray. Larger items such as ornamental vases are also up for grabs starting at Php100 a piece. If you’re looking for bricks for your front yard, there are some for sale here also. Contact one of the traditional potters at +63 935 479 2634.


Teaño Milk Candy
Teaño Milk Candy
  1. Delicious Milk Candy

For your family member who’s into sweet things, Teaño Milk Candy from Alcala is the perfect take-home item. These addictive candies have been around since 1930 and continue to delight the taste buds up to this day. It’s made from fresh carabao milk and is so much better than a glass of it. Visit the store at Bacolod, Alcala, Cagayan or contact +63 531 00 45. They also have a branch at 18 Lion’s Road Mandaluyong City if you just can’t get enough of it (which is very likely).

The Chicha-rabao
The Chicha-rabao
  1. Sinful Carabao Chicharon

Speaking of carabao, another prized product made from our national animal is Tuguegarao’s carabao chicharon. For anyone who loves chichirya, these alchemical skin-blossoms will be irresistible. Produced and available for sale at the Lighthouse Cooperative at Corner Taft Street Centro 02, 39 Luna St., take home a pack or two for that one tito who appreciates a good pulutan, or for that friend who just enjoys munching on something while watching Game of Thrones. Contact +63 78 304 0635 for more information.

These are some pasalubong from Cagayan you can bring home for your family and friends back home. They’re sure to be a hit! Of course, you can always be a bit selfish and buy some for yourself. We won’t judge you. *wink wink*

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My name is Celine, forever 18, thrill-seeker, tree-hugger, moon-worshipper, tea-chugger, and storyteller extraordinaire!

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