Are you looking for places to visit in the Philippines? Antique Province in Panay Island, Western Visayas should be on your list!

This province is quite special because of its natural beauty and diversity. Here, you can visit beautiful beaches, remote islands, pristine waterfalls & springs, untouched rainforest, soaring mountain peaks, and peaceful countryside views. Antique is a nature lover’s paradise! I’ve already traveled to Antique many times, but I keep discovering new reasons to come back.

Recently, I joined a 6-day tour with Katahum Tours, on my last trip to Antique. I got very excited when I saw our itinerary because it included a lot of places that I haven’t visited before like the Antique Rice Terraces and Igpasungaw Falls.

Inspired by our trip, I’ve written this list of 23 things to do in Antique, which should be helpful to both first-timers and travelers looking for reasons to go back and experience more of the province:

1. Soak up the scenery at Mararison Island’s Sandbar

Mararison Island Sandbar in Culasi, Antique, Philippines

Mararison Island Sandbar in Culasi, Antique, Philippines

Crowded beaches not your thing? Head to Mararison Island to experience peaceful island life in the Philippines. Getting there is easy from Boracay and Iloilo City. The ferry crossing from Culasi Town Proper in mainland Panay only takes 10-15 minutes by pumpboat (local outrigger ferry). Culasi, Antique is around 2 hours away from Boracay and 4 hours away from Iloilo City.

2. Enjoy a performance by the Mararison Children’s Choir

Mararison Children's Choir in Mararison Island, Culasi, Antique, Philippines

Mararison Children’s Choir in Mararison Island, Culasi, Antique, Philippines

Charming performances by the singing kids of Mararison, now famously known as the Mararison Island Children’s Choir, always make a trip to the island more memorable. These kids have built up quite a repertoire that includes a Karay-a version of Disney’s “Let it go” and the “Mararison” theme song. Karay-a is the (local) language spoken widely in Antique & parts of Panay Island.

3. See the pitcher plant gardens in Mararison

Mararison Pitcher Plant Garden in Mararison Island, Culasi, Antique, Philippines

Mararison Pitcher Plant Garden in Mararison Island, Culasi, Antique, Philippines

There is an abundance of pitcher plants in this small island. If you’ve never seen this rare carnivorous plant, you can find them in big bunches growing on the scenic rolling hills of Mararison. This is the only place that I’ve seen pitcher plants thrive in a small island. There’s an easy hiking trail you can follow from the sandbar to this extraordinary site.

4. Take a hike, to the Mararison’s view deck

Overlooking Mararison Island from the view deck, in Culasi, Antique, Philippines

Overlooking Mararison Island from the view deck, in Culasi, Antique, Philippines

Hike past the pitcher plant gardens for a breathtaking view of Mararison Island and the soaring mountains of Antique. You can continue your trek to Nablag Islet and follow coast back to the sandbar.

5. Go on a sunrise cruise to Seco Island

Sunrise ferry crossing to Seco Island, Tibiao, Antique, Philippines

Sunrise ferry crossing to Seco Island, Tibiao, Antique, Philippines

Seco Island is one of the most beautiful and must-visit spots in Antique. It takes 2-3 hours to reach this remote sandbar from mainland Tibiao. Start the ferry crossing before the break of dawn to enjoy the beautiful sunrise view. If you’re lucky, you might be able to spot dolphins that frequently follow boats headed to Seco Island.

6. Unwind at the serene waters & white sandbar of Seco Island

Laguna Blue Waters in Seco Island, Tibiao, Antique, Philippines

Laguna Blue Waters in Seco Island, Tibiao, Antique, Philippines

Seco Island is a tropical paradise for beach lovers and sun worshippers. There are no concrete buildings or glitzy resorts in this tiny & remote sandbar, but you can look forward to enjoying a luxurious view of an expansive white sand beach and inviting turquoise waters.

It was my second visit to Seco Island. This time, we joined a flag-raising ceremony organized by the Municipal Government of Tibiao, in celebration of Philippine Independence Day. Check out this amazing drone video captured during the event.

Marcos at Seco Island. Click here to see more on Instagram.

7. Experience the Kawa Hot Bath & Fish Spa in Tibiao

Kawa Hot Bath at Kawa Inn in Tibiao, Antique, Philippines

Kawa Hot Bath at Kawa Inn in Tibiao, Antique, Philippines

Antique’s unique Kawa Hot Bath can now be experienced at Tibiao Fish Spa, in addition to a memorable (and very affordable) fish spa experience. For those traveling on a budget, the newly opened Kawa Inn found within the property offers native-style rooms & dorm beds.

8. Dine at Mamammia Italian and Filipino Restaurant

Mamammia Italian and Filipino Restaurant, in Tibiao, Antique, Philippines

Mamammia Italian and Filipino Restaurant, in Tibiao, Antique, Philippines

If you’re passing through the town of Tibiao, don’t pass off a food trip at Mamammia Italian and Filipino Restaurant. This humble seaside joint is where you can enjoy one of the best pizza and pasta in Panay!

9. Soak up the refreshing views at the Antique Rice Terraces

Antique Rice Terraces, in Brgy. General Fullon, San Remegio, Antique, Philippines

Antique Rice Terraces, in Brgy. General Fullon, San Remegio, Antique, Philippines

The Cordillera mountains of Luzon isn’t the only place where you can find expansive terraced rice paddies in the Philippines. 600-hectares of rice terraces has recently been “internet discovered” in the remote barangay of General Fullon in San Remigio. The area is now known as the “Antique Rice Terraces.”

10. Have a local homestay experience

Native Kitchen, in Brgy. General Fullon, San Remigio, Antique, Philippines

Native Kitchen, in Brgy. General Fullon, San Remigio, Antique, Philippines

One of the highlights of our visit to General Fullon was the local homestay experience. Getting there takes at least 3 to 5 hours on foot from the nearest village with road access. The areas surrounding the Antique Rice Terraces only get 2 hours of electricity each day. For city dwellers, spending a night here means a retreat from the digital age and an immersive experience of life in the remote countrysides of the Philippines.

Professor Emmanuel Lerona, a faculty member of the University of the Philippines-Visayas, allowed us to join a donation of school supplies from PART (Philippines Aid & Relief from Tasmania) Foundation during our visit. This event made us aware of outreach opportunities that the villages are in need of, especially medical and school supplies and services. Hopefully with more people visiting the Antique Rice Terraces, the locals would also benefit from new livelihood/tourism opportunities and attention from well-meaning people who can organize more outreach programs.

11. Take a hike, to General Fullon in San Remigio

Trek to Antique Rice Terraces, in Brgy. General Fullon, San Remigio, Antique, Philippines

Trek to Antique Rice Terraces, in Brgy. General Fullon, San Remigio, Antique, Philippines

The Antique Rice Terraces isn’t the only worthy destination in General Fullon. There are many waterfalls and hiking trails yet to be explored in this mountainous part of Antique & Panay Island.

12. Visit Bagtason Loom Weavers

Bagtason Loom Weavers, in Brgy. Bagtason, Bugasong, Antique, Philippines

Bagtason Loom Weavers, in Brgy. Bagtason, Bugasong, Antique, Philippines

The Bagtason Loom Weavers sells handloom textiles and products made in traditional pataydong fashion. For those interested in high-quality handmade products, vibrant multi-colored shawls & scarves among other items are on display at their site in Brgy. Bagtason, Bugasong.

13. Stopover at Patnongon’s ruined heritage sites

Patnongon Church and Convent Ruins, in Patnongon, Antique, Philippines

Patnongon Church and Convent Ruins, in Patnongon, Antique, Philippines

If you’re passing through Patnongon town, there are a number of Spanish-colonial heritage sites in town that’s worth a stopover including the ruined structures of Patnongon Church & Convent (The parish church of St. Augustine), and Patnongon Old Municipal Hall.

14. See the rare blooming Rafflesia, corpse flower

Blooming Rafflesia, in Brgy. Aningalan, San Remigio, Antique, Philippines

Blooming Rafflesia, in Brgy. Aningalan, San Remigio, Antique, Philippines

Kota Kinabalu in Sabah, Borneo, Malaysia isn’t the only place to see the rare Rafflesia, also known as the corpse flower. The mountains of Antique & Iloilo are home to at least two species of this carnivorous parasitic plant. The Rafflesia blooming site in Brgy. Aningalan, San Remigio is very easy to reach thanks to recently completed paved roads. The hike from the road takes less than 5 minutes!

15. Explore Igbaclag Cave & Stone Castle

Igbaclag Cave and Stone Castle, in Brgy. Aningalan, San Remigio, Antique, Philippines

Igbaclag Cave and Stone Castle, in Brgy. Aningalan, San Remigio, Antique, Philippines

Brgy. Aningalan, San Remigio is also home to the Igbaclag Cave & Stone Castle, which has Jurrasic-like views of karst (rock) formations & lush rainforest. San Remigio is known as the “summer capital of Antique” because of its cool year-round temperatures. This place has a lot of potentials to be Panay’s next big thing in tourism. The newly finished roads are part of the road network that will connect San Remigio to Bucari, Leon in Iloilo. These ongoing developments will reduce travel time between Iloilo City and Antique Province.

16. Go Rock Scrambling

Igbaclag Cave and Stone Castle, in Brgy. Aningalan, San Remegio, Antique, Philippines

Igbaclag Cave and Stone Castle, in Brgy. Aningalan, San Remegio, Antique, Philippines

17. Take home precious stones and gems

Eliza's Gem Store, in Brgy. Aningalan, San Remigio, Antique, Philippines

Eliza’s Gem Store, in Brgy. Aningalan, San Remigio, Antique, Philippines

If there’s one thing that I regret not doing on my trip to India & Nepal, it was buying cheap gems & precious stones abundant in those countries. Antique is also rich in mineral deposits. You can find a few gem stores open in San Remigio & Sibalom that sell gem & stone crafts.

18. Take a hike, to Igpasungaw Falls

Igpasungaw Falls, in Sebaste, Antique, Philippines

Igpasungaw Falls, in Sebaste, Antique, Philippines

I was very excited to finally get the chance to visit Igpasungaw Falls. In case you didn’t know, I love visiting beautiful waterfalls in the Philippines. Igpasungaw Falls wasn’t as grand as those I’ve previously blogged about, but this multi-level curtain falls was still nice to visit. The trek from the jump-off point takes around 30 minutes to 1-hour along an easy trail. Keep an eye out for the rare Amorphophallus, a carnivorous plant known for having the tallest flower bloom in the world.

19. Visit the miraculous image of Saint Blaise in Sebaste Church

Miraculous Image of St. Blaise, in Sebaste, Antique, Philippines

Miraculous Image of St. Blaise, in Sebaste, Antique, Philippines

After a visit to Igbasungaw Falls we did a quick stopover at Sebaste Church, a famous pilgrimage site known for its miraculous image of Saint Blaise.

20. Kick back at Naranjo Water Park

Lunch at Naranjo Water Park, Pandan, Antique, Philippines

Lunch at Naranjo Water Park, Pandan, Antique, Philippines

Naranjo Water Park is a new dining & adventure destination found on the way to Malumpati Col Spring in Pandan. We really enjoyed the food and riverside ambiance. Do try their sizzling ostrich, sizzling crocodile & pancit!

21. Go paddle boarding & kayaking on the Bugang River

Paddle Boarding at Naranjo Water Park, Pandan, Antique, Philippines

Paddle Boarding at Naranjo Water Park, Pandan, Antique, Philippines

If you want to kick it up a notch instead, Naranjo Water Park has stand-up paddle boards, kayaks & paddle boats for rent. The place is built along the serene Bugang River, awarded as the greenest and cleanest inland body of water in the Philippines.

22. Cool down at Malumpati Cold Spring

Malumpati Cold Spring in Pandan, Antique, Philippines

Malumpati Cold Spring in Pandan, Antique, Philippines

Malumpati Cold Spring had suddenly become hugely popular this summer. Boracay-bound tourists are now, probably, looking for places to cool off, where they can escape the harsh tropical heat. An upside of visiting the cold spring during the later part of the year is getting to enjoy it will less or no crowds.

23. Relax at Pandan Beach Resort

Pandan Beach Resort in Pandan, Antique, Philippines

Pandan Beach Resort in Pandan, Antique, Philippines

Pandan Beach Resort is conveniently located on a quiet corner of Pandan Town Proper. Aside from comfy rooms, you can look forward to a warm reception from their staff and excellent dining experience. Enjoying a massage at the resort was the perfect way to end our Antique adventure.

6 Days Antique Itinerary

 

Day 1

Destinations — Iloilo City, Culasi

Activities

11AM to 3PM — Iloilo to Culasi van transport

3PM to 5PM — Mararison Island

Mararison Hike to pitcher plant gardens & the viewdeck

Rest at Anna Sophie Hostel (Poblacion, Culasi, Antique; 0920-4762508; Facebook)

Day 2

Destinations — Tibiao

Activities

4AM to 6:30AM — Tibiao (mainland) to Seco Island ferry crossing

6:30AM to 1:30PM — Seco Island

1:30M to 4PM — Seco Island to Tibiao (mainland) ferry crossing

Fish Spa & Kawa Hot Bath at Kawa Inn

Rest at Kawa Inn (Malabor-Alegre Rd, Tibiao, Antique; 0917-4503121; Website)

Day 3

Destinations — Antique Rice Terraces, San Remigio.

Activities

4AM to 6AM — Tibiao to Valderrama van transport

6AM to 10AM — Trek from jump-off point in Valderrama to Brgy. General Fullon, San Remigio

Antique Rice Terraces

Rest at Homestay

Day 4

Destinations — Aningalan, San Remigio

Activities

6AM to 10AM — Trek back to jump-off point

11AM to 2PM — Valderamma to Brgy. Aningalan, San Remigio van transport, including stopovers at Bagtason Loom Weavers & Patnongon Ruins, and lunch

2PM to 2:15PM — Blooming Rafflesia

2:15PM to 4:30PM — Igbaclag Cave

Brgy. Aningalan to Tibiao van transport with side trip at a gem store

Dinner at Mammamia Italian & Filipino Restaurant

Rest at Kawa Inn

Day 5

Destinations — Sebaste & Pandan.

Activities

Tibiao to Sebaste van transport

7:30AM to 8AM — Trek from jump-off point in Sebaste to Igpasungaw Falls

8AM to 10AM — Igpasungaw Falls

10AM to 10:30AM — Trek back to Sebaste

10:30AM to 12NN — Sebaste to Pandan van transport, including a stopover at Sebaste Church

12NN to 2PM — Lunch at Naranjo Water Park

Paddle boarding & kayaking on the Bugang River

2PM to 3:30PM — Malumpati Cold Spring

Rest at Pandan Beach Resort (Poblacion, Pandan, Antique; 0917-8371155; Website)

Day 6

Destinations — Iloilo City

Activities

7AM to 12:30NN — Pandan to Iloilo City van transport, including stopover at Southern Iloilo heritage sites in San Joaquin, Miagao, Guimbal & Tigbauan

This trip is part of Marcos’ Iloilo, Antique & Guimaras 2016 & 2016 Detours travel series.

Here are contact details that you can use to plan your own Antique adventure:

  • Mararison Island — Allan Macuja, Brgy. Captain, 0912-8159672
  • Mararison Island Children’s Choir — Joeryl Amora, Trainor, 0930-3652606
  • Antique Rice Terraces — Noli Maguad, Brgy. Captain, 0906-4399957
  • Aningalan, San Remigio — Charity Sanchez, Tourism Officer, 0908-5663379
  • Bagtason Loom Weavers — Mario Manzano, Manager, 0906-8438687
  • Igpasungaw Falls — Jessie Estolloso, Tourism Officer, 0912-4988994
  • Bugang River — Bong Venus, Tourism Officer, 0918-4489348

Disclaimer: Our trip was made possible by Katahum Tours and our accommodation was provided by Anna Sophie Hostel (Culasi), Kawa Inn (Tibiao) & Pandan Beach Resort (Pandan).

About Katahum Tours

For hassle-free tour packages in Antique including tours to Antique Rice Terraces, Seco Island, Malalison Island, Tibiao River, Bugang River, Libertad & more, you may reach Katahum Tours through these channels:

Don’t forget to mention “Detourista” when placing your reservation.

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