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Featured Wedding Destination

Sorsogon – Bicol's Whale shark Paradise

The province of Sorsogon is one of the few places in the world whale sharks, locally called butanding live. Known to be the biggest fish in the world, butandings are well taken care off by the residents of the province. It is the only place in the world where divers can closely watch or interact with these gentle giants of the sea.

Aside from butandings, other natural attractions in Sorsogon include the islands of Matnog, Mt. Bulusan National Park and Mountain Lake, among others. The province is filled with numerous wonders waiting to be explored and shared with the rest of the world. Still, Sorsogon shall be able to keep its simplicity and unique beauty.

 

Demographics

1.Population – 709,673 (as of 2007 Census)
2. Land Area – 2,119.0 sq. km
3. Capital – Sorsogon City
4. Language/Dialect – Bikol, English, and Filipino
5. Divisions

Cities (1)

Sorsogon City

Municipalities (6)

  • Barcelona
  • Bulan
  • Bulusan
  • Casiguran
  • Castilla
  • Donsol
  • Gubat
  • Irosin
  • Juban
  • Magallanes
  • Matnog
  • Pilar
  • Prieto Diaz
  • Santa Magdalena

Famous For ...

Butanding Interaction in Donsol
The Butanding or the Whale shark (Rhincodon typus) is the biggest fish in the world. These gentle creatures are well protected by the locals and the government. Peak interaction season is February to May each year.

Mt. Bulusan National Park and Bulusan Mountain Lake
The site is a favorite destination of mountain climbers and nature lovers for a number of excellent reasons: Mount Bulusan remains to be an active volcano; the surrounding forests boast of exotic flora and fauna.

PNOC Eco-Park
it is the site of the Bacon-Manito Geothermal Plants of the Philippine National Oil Company (PNOC). The eco-park itself offers a lot of eco-tour delights and adventures including mountain falls, hot and cold springs, boiling water lakes, and exotic flora and fauna.

Island hopping at Matnog
Hopping around the four islands of Matnog is a must-do for tourist. Each island offers a unique experience for island hoppers.

Pili Festival
Dubbed “The Majestic Tree of Sorsogon”, the pili tree has served as one of the main sources of income and livelihood among the people of Sorsogon. The festival is their way of celebrating the benefits they gain from the tree.

Places of Interest

Cultural

Old Houses of Juban
Location: Juban, Sorsogon
Lining the highway of Juban are several bahay na bato (stone houses) that have been well preserved throughout the years. Although the ground floor of some of these houses have been converted for commercial purposes, it kept its original design.

Bagatao Island
Location: Magallanes, Sorsogon
From the Bikol word, “bagang tawo” or “looks like a man, island resembles a man floating in the water. It is reputed to be the biggest Spanish shipyard in the whole Bicol Region where some of the biggest and most magnificent galleons were constructed. Unfortunately, artifacts have been looted by treasure hunters and scavengers.

Nagsurok Cave and Pinanaan Cave
Location: Prieto-Diaz, Sorsogon
Nagsurok, which mean 'to crawl' and Pinanaan means 'shot with an arrow'. These two caves are the settings of a popular local legend. According to the legend, a giant bird, called a Mampak , thrives in Nagsurok Cave and eats human flesh. One time, the townsfolk were able to corner the giant bird and rained arrows on it.

Dancalan Astillero
Location: Brgy. Dancalan, Donsol, Sorsogon
It is believed to be one of the biggest shipyards in this part of the country during the time of the Spaniards. Also the shipyard doubled as a metalworks site. In 1995, a team composed of members of the Sorsogon Provincial Tourism Council, the Sorsogon Arts Council and the National Museum were able to unearthed artifacts like smelting tools.

Historical

Sorsogon National High School Building
Location: Bacon District, Sorsogon City, Sorsogon
It is considered one of the oldest schools, not only in the province, but in the region. During the Japanese occupation, it was turned into a concentration camp where many suspected guerillas were imprisoned and tortured , with some of them killed.

Panlatuan Ruins
Location: Pilar, Sorsogon
This shipyard was the site of a revolt spearheaded by the people of Sorsogon. In August 1898, the workers at the shipyard cried “Revolution!”, took up arms, and killed the shipyard's Spanish administrator, together with his four assistants.

Man-Made

Mt. Bulusan National Park and Bulusan Mountain Lake
Location: Bulusan, Sorsogon
Mt. Bulusan is stil an active which has an elevation of 5,077 feet above sea level. The lake itself, which has a circumference of 2,006 meters, has an elevation of 2,084 feet upon the slopes of the volcano. There is a smaller lake higher up the volcano called Lake Agingay. The mountain Lake has a concrete pathway rimming the lake, affording the visitor a pleasant and serene, leisurely nature walk. The Park complex is a sanctuary for rare flora and fauna. Eager mountaineers regularly scale the volcano up to its crater and marvel at the ancient, moss-covered trees, giant ferns and rare wild orchids that they see on their way to the peak of the volcano.

Rizal Beach Resort
Location: Gubat, Sorsogon
It is a favorite picnic destination for locals and visitors. There are now two resort hotels along the beach, offering air-conditioned rooms, including restaurants, function halls, beachside cottages, and souvenir shops.

Libanon Beach Resort
Location: Brgy. San Juan, Bacon District, Sorsogon City, Sorsogon
The beach features black fine sand, with one part of the seaside hill studded with huge, craggy black rocks where the waves slam noisily. The black rocks and sand are believed to have been spewed by Mayon Volcano whose peak can be viewed from the beach.

Matnog Islands
Location:Matnog, Sorsogon
Tikling Island, which is the nearest, offers fine white sand all around where one can also beach comb for rare shell finds. Calintaan Island, on the other hand, looks like the head of a giant barely bobbing above the water, featuring huge underwater caves populated by giant bats. Juag Island is good for swimming and sunbathing, while Subic is perhaps the only beach anywhere that features a fine pink sand beach, which is why it is now sometimes called, “La Playa Rosa”.

Mapaso Spring
Location: Irosin, Sorsogon
The spring water in the swimming pool here is a real hot bath. In fact, the pool can be seen to emit thin, wispy smoke. But a person can soak in the volcanic spring water for as long as he wants. The spring water is soothing and relaxing to the body. It is also believed to banish many types of skin problems.

PNOC Eco-Park
Location: Bacon District, Sorsogon City, Sorsogon
Covering a total of 25,100 hectares forest reservation, straddling the Sorsogon-Albay boundary areas, the eco-park offers a lot of eco-tour delights and adventures. There are falls, springs, and lakes found inside the eco-park which will surely delight nature enthusiats. It is the site of the Bacon-Manito Geothermal Plants of the Philippine National Oil Company (PNOC).

Rompeloas/Sorsogon Pier
Location: Sorsogon City, Sorsogon
Rompeolas is Spanish for “where the waves cavort”, the old and still popular name up to this time for the old Sorsogon pier which juts into Sorsogon Bay. It has panoramic view of Mt. Bulusan just across the Bay, and inland, a fairyland-like view of the Sts. Peter and Paul Cathedral with its colorful pointed spires.

Religious

Barcelona Church and Ruins (St. Joseph's Church)
Location: Barcelona, Sorsogon
It is the oldest church in Bicol, built in 1874 by a Spanish friar form a Franciscan order. The thick stone walls of the church, including its bell tower, are the original walls, still relatively intact and well-preserved. Fronting the church, facing the sea, are the ruins of a stone structure that was then known as the casa tribunal and baluarte, or fort, and a schoolhouse made entirely of stones.

Irosin Hilltop Church
Location: Irosin, Sorsogon
Built on top of a hill, this old Catholic church is situated right in the center of town, affording churchgoers and visitors a panoramic view of the town and the surrounding countryside beyond, including the peak of Mt. Bulusan. It can be reached via a hundred-step concrete stairs going straight up the hill until one reaches the massive 2-door entrance into the interior of the old church at the top of the stairway.

Festival

Pili Festival
Place: Sorsogon City, Sorsogon
Date: June 28 - 29
The street dance, which highlights the weeklong Festival, features costumed dancers move to the rhythmic, hypnotic beat of native percussion instruments. It presents the three growth stages of the Pili, from green (young fruit) to violet (half-mature) to black (mature). The celebration coincides with the feasts of Sts. Peter and Paul.

Hin-ay Festival
Place: Irosin, Sorsogon
Date: September 28 - 29
This festival is a commemoration of the feast day of the town’s patron, St. Michael the Archangel, and at the same time a rediscovery of the town’s cultural heritage. Various activities include the Mardi Gras, which depicts the victory of the Archangels over the Black Angel, cultural show, agro-trade fair, beauty pageant, food festival, among others.

Kasanggayan Festival
Place: Sorsogon Province
Date: October 14 - 17
Festival is celebrated in Sorsogon in commemoration of its foundation as a Province. It is a province-wide festival, with the center of activities in Sorsogon City.

Butanding Arribada Festival
Place: Donsol, Sorsogon
Date: April 28- 30
The festival marks the butanding (whale shark) season as well as a thanksgiving for the blessings that the butanding’s presence has given the people of Donsol. A long fluvial procession just at the mouth of the long and winding Donsol River where a large pod of butandings usually converge at this time of the year, highlights the Festival.

Padaraw Festival
Place: Bulan, Sorsogon
Date: May 30
Padaraw is derived from a Bicol term "daraw" referring to the groups or schools of fishes. This daraw becomes a convergence point for the fishermen to make their catch for the day. Padaraw therefore, refers to unity. The festival showcases colorful costumes fashioned from abaca fiber. It is highlighted by a grand street presentation with the participants clad in these colorful abaca costumes.

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Learn More

How To Get There?

By Land:
Sorsogon can be reached via bus through the Maharlika Highway, passing through the different provinces in the Bicol region. Travel time is between 10 – 12 hours.

By Air-Land:
Take a flight bound for Legazpi City, Albay. Estimated travel time is 50 minutes. From here, take a rented van or bus towards Sorsogon.

Related Links:
Wow Philippines Sorsogon Page

 
 
 

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