Reaching its highest influx of tourists in the past five years, the Provincial Government of Ilocos Norte (PGIN) is set to open four museums across the province this November 11-14, 2015 to strengthen its ‘Paoay Kumakaway!’ tourism campaign.

Launched in 2012, the ‘Paoay Kumakaway!’ has highlighted the key attractions and vibrant culture of Ilocos Norte and has been attracting national and global attention.

Governor Imee R. Marcos said that the museums are expected to draw more tourists in the province but most importantly to offer “new attraction, activities and events to returning tourists.”

“We have found out that over 60% of tourists in Ilocos Norte in the past years are returning visitors. This is why we are putting much effort in continuous development to ensure that they have new places to visit and explore in the province,” added Governor Marcos.

The new museums that will open in Ilocos Norte this month are the Paoay Convent Ruins on November 12; Balay Dingras on November 13 and; Taoid Museum in Laoag City and the newly restored Burgos Lighthouse Museum on November 14.

Meanwhile, renowned visual artist Marc Cosico’s mural dedicated to the memory of the Ilocanos in leading the Basi Revolt in 1807 will also be unveiled on November 11 in Piddig, Ilocos Norte.

Governor Marcos emphasized in her previous State of the Province Address (SOPA) that the province has been building new tourism infrastructures to cater to the growing industry.

“Tourism has grown a stunning 380.64 % in the past two years, a record 1,245,562 day visitors, January to July 2015 only,” said Governor Marcos.

Organizers from the provincial government said that the museums will definitely showcase the province’s extraordinary and diverse culture, history and heritage.

Moreover, the opening of the museum is also in line with the ‘cultural strategy’ that Governor Marcos had launched during her SOPA in 2014.

“We aim to uphold Ilocano culture as primary driver of growth and development by putting in place a cultural strategy not merely to protect heritage sites and museums, but to promote art galleries and spaces, endow schools of architecture, design, literature, and renew vanishing indigenous cultures,” she noted. (John Michael Mugas, PGIN-CMO)