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There are a few tourist spots in Ilocos Norte that are often overlooked yet carry with them a piece of Philippine history. Here’s a glimpse!

Tobacco Monopoly Monument

They said that tobacco is bad for you. Well, during the year 1881, Ilocano’s were so tired of tobacco that they built this monument when tobacco monopoly was ended. Basically, their land was so rich and fertile that tobacco plants grow in abundance. Because of this, Spaniards ordered Ilocanos to plant nothing but tobacco in their soil. The products are then brought to the government. For 100 years (1781 to 1881), Ilocos held monopoly over tobacco products with the Spaniards constantly abusing this fact. On 1881, King Alfonso XII removed the tobacco monopoly and the inhabitants of Ilocos erected the monument in memory of the century of oppression due to cigars.

General Ricarte National Shrine

Aglipay ShrineGeneral Artemio Ricarte was the first chief of staff of the Armed Forces of the Philippines. Live during World War II, his shrine consists of a statue by the man himself, a library and a museum containing artifacts from the Second World War. Other personal belongings like photographs are also housed within the shrine. He was once a member of the famous Katipunan under the ‘El Vibora” or Viper.

Aglipay Shrine

In honor of the former Catholic Priest who founded Iglesia Filipina Independiente or IFI (Philippine Independent Church in English), Gregoria Aglipay was a staunch supporter of the Philippine Revolution. Because of this, he was officially prohibited from taking part in a Communion, hence prompting the excommunicated priest to establish IFI. Aglipay died during the year 1940 at the ripe old age of 80.  

After visiting this site, the Marcos Mausoleum can be found right across the street in honor of the former Philippine President and dictator Ferdinand Marcos.

aglipay shrine | general ricarte national shrin | tobacco monopoly monument | tourist spots in ilocos norte | visiting ilocos norte

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