Philippine city eyed as cruise destination

El_Nido_Palawan_Big_LagoonBAYOMBONG, Nueva Vizcaya (Philippine Star) — International travel firms are considering Vigan City in Ilocos Sur, 254 miles north of Manila, as a major cruise destination.

Philippine Ambassador to U.S. Jose Cuisia, who recently visited Vigan, said three giant cruise companies — Carnival, Royal Caribbean and Norwegian — have expressed interest in making the city one of the world’s leading tourist destinations.

These companies, he said, were inspired by Vigan’s well-preserved Spanish era structures and industries.

The city was adjudged number one in “Heritage Conservation and Management” during the World Heritage Convention in Kyoto, Japan in 2012.

Vigan Mayor Eva Marie Medina said local and foreign tourists continue to visit the city since its inclusion in the remaining 14 cities vying for the New7 Wonders Cities.

The top seven cities, which will be chosen based on online and text voting, will be announced on Dec. 7.

Formerly named Ciudad Fernandina during the Spanish era, Vigan was also declared as a World Heritage Site by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization.

Palawan named best island

In related news, Palawan’s latest title of “Best Island in the World” is a result of a strong environmental governance that is worthy of emulation, according to Department of Environment and Natural Resources Secretary Ramon Paje.

Paje described the citation from the world’s premier travel magazine, Condé Nast, as a “resounding testament” to Palawan’s successful environmental governance.

Palawan bested some of the world’s most popular international destinations such as the Great Barrier Reef, the Kangaroo and the Whitsunday Islands in Australia; the Maui, Kauai and the Big Islands in Hawaii; and the Santorini and Cyclades in Greece.

The main tourist attractions in the province include the El Nido resort, the Coron Islands Cave, the Tubbataha Reef and the Puerto Princesa Subterranean River Natural Park, which has been named as one of the Seven Wonders of Nature.

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