A River Runs through the Beach of Pannzian
The scenic drive from Cagayan Province to Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte was about 2.5 hours. We wanted to breakaway for a day and I thought going to a rain forest in Pagudpud was exactly what we needed. Did I mention, the resort is "OFF THE GRID" no internet/ cell signal :-) My husband was such a sport and let me book the place right away.
At the gate of Pannzian Beach, the guard asked for our name and it was obvious that he was expecting us. He asked us to wait a moment as he calls the front desk from his cell phone to inform them of our arrival. He helped us find the best parking and assisted with our bags.
We each got lei'd - a Hawaiian symbol of welcome and friendship. Then, served a large mason jar of Fresh Coconut Mint mocktail. It was so GOOD! Nothing beats fresh - farm to table service.
We decided to get a quick lunch before we check in. The Ilocos Bread sandwich with crispy vigan longaniza, cucumber and kale with tamarind dressing, and then their Signature Pancit Sisig with Banana Blossom. Our first meal was satisfying and we could not wait for dinner. Their staff suggests that we pre-order our dinner.
Accommodation: Room Three (Queen Bed for 2)
It was past 3Pm when we finally checked into our room. Clean Simple Room with wooden furnishings, Comfortable bed, hot shower, and cold air conditioner. They provide basic amenities (soap, shampoo, toothbrush and toothpaste), towels
Beach: VERY CLEAN!
The waves and current was strong that afternoon, but it did not stop us from swimming and enjoying the sun. The beauty about this beach is the river that runs through it. We have never experienced swimming in warm salt water and then just a few steps down the shore you could dip in fresh, cold vibrant spring water. What a haven! The black and white river rocks are beautiful, making this place unique.
Their cuisine is inspired by the owner - Bing. We had the pleasure of spending time with her during our stay. She gave us the history of Pannzian how their family was able to provide a sense of pride and community among the locals that they hire. The unique taste from their cuisine is greatly influenced by her visits to other asian countries. Their menus are reminiscent of Thai cuisine. Flavors are deep, fresh, herbaceous, healthy & Green. There are local favorites like their signature Mongo with bagnet. Oh My :-) a must try.
They also have an herb and vegetable garden and a lush landscape. Bing informed us that being in the rainforest helps sustain the growth and health of the plants. The dew in the early morning and at night helps water the plants. We fell in love with the many colors of San Francisco plant and she generously gave us cuttings of each variety and many other plants, names that are foreign to me.
**Special Touch! They serve Fresh Tarragon Tea after every meal. Love the flavor for it reminds of rootbeer.
Bonfire by the beach - they provide marshmallows....
I suggest you bring chocolate bars and graham crackers and make smores!!!
Early morning trek to the Spring. It was a manageable walk, about 20 minutes. It was all worth it. Taking a dip in the brisk water was refreshing. I'm the kind of person that hates outdoors.... but this place I truly enjoyed. Our guide, was an old man, he was quiet with gentle eyes. On the trail, Manong spots edible vegies. He gave us "pepinitos" miniature pepino (cucumber) the size of a red bean to try. It was delicious, I must have eaten a handful. He did not say much - but we felt that words are not necessary coz the place was truly beautiful.
Make sure to wear something for swimming. Wear the right foot gear. Flipflops can be tricky. Bring water for drinking - you will get parched from the long walk.
I highly recommend this place. For the entire family, couples, team building, retreats etc. The beautiful and serene Pannzian was the hard work of Bing and her family. They gave careful thought, endless time, love, and attention into every area.
Thank you Pannzian Staff for taking care of us during our stay. We are coming back with a big group in July. See you very soon!
Couples - May 28, 2017