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Samar - Splendor Between Mountain And Sea

The province of Samar is nestled between mountain and sea, bountiful waters on the west and low mountain ranges on the east. With this, Samar is blessed with a lush rainforest, exotic flora and fauna, and natural wonders that has attracted local and foreign nature-loving tourists. Its famed attractions include the Sohoton Natural Bridge National Park and Calbiga Cave.

Aside from its natural treasures, it boasts of architectural and cultural wonders as well. There is the 17th century old Basey Church, Calbayog Cathedral, Samar Archeological Museum and Research Center, and the San Juanico Bridge.

Demographic

1. Population – 390, 847 (as of 2007 Census)
2. Land Area – 6, 048 sq. km
3. Capital – Catbalogan
4. Language/Dialect – Waray – waray, Cebuano, English, and Filipino
5. Divisions

Cities (1)

  • Calbayog City

Municipalities (25)

  • Almagro
  • Basey
  • Calbiga
  • Catbalogan
  • Daram
  • Gandara
  • Hinabangan
  • Jiabong
  • Marabut
  • Matuguinao
  • Motiong
  • Pagsanghan
  • Paranas (Wright)
  • Pinabacdao
  • San Jorge
  • San Jose De Buan
  • San Sebastian
  • Santa Margarita
  • Santa Rita
  • Santo Niño
  • Tagapul-an
  • Talalora
  • Tarangnan
  • Villareal
  • Zumarraga

famousfor

St. Michael the Archangel Church (Basey Church)
This 17th century church is one of the oldest churches here in the Philippines. It features a watchtower and old images of saints painted on the ceiling.

Sohoton Natural Bridge National Park
It is internationally known for its natural beauty expressed in its caves, subterranean rivers, waterfalls, and unique limestone formations

Langun-Gobingub Cave (Calbiga Cave)
The 2,968-hectare cave system has the Philippines’ biggest karst formations, which are also some of the largest in Asia. It is composed of twelve caves with a wide underground space, unique rock formations, and subterranean watercourse.

San Juanico Bridge
The San Juanico Bridge is the longest and most beautifully designed bridge in the Philippines. It connects the islands of Samar and Leyte.

Samar Archeological Museum and Research Center
It is the first and only museum in Samar Island. It houses numerous artifacts and archeological treasures that dates back to the 14th Century.

places

Cultural

Samar Archeological Museum and Research Center
Location: Christ the King College, Calbayog City, Samar
The first and only museum in Samar Island opened on April 11, 1970. Among its archeological artifacts include burial jars and covers, log coffin, jarlets, cups, howls, saucers and dishes dating back to the 14th Century. There are also coins, heirlooms, old household items, and religious items such as saints, altar, chalices, and monstrance used during the Spanish occupation.

Historical

Obelisk
Location: Samar Provincial Capitol Park, Catbaloga, Samar
Made by Juan Sajid Imao, son of National Artist for Sculpture Abdulmari Imao, this four-sided work of art depicts four momentous and historic events in the Samar Island. Facing East is the Balangiga encounter. Facing North, is a relief of the Sumuroy Rebellion in Palapag in 1649. Facing West, is a scene depicting the arrival of the first Jesuit missionaries in Tinagon on October 15, 1596. And facing South, is Queen Isabella III, carrying a Royal Decree of August 11, 1841 declaring Samar a province.

Man-made

San Juanico Bridge
Location: Sta. Rita, Samar - Tacloban City, Leyte
It is the longest bridge in the Philippines spanning a body of water with a length of 2.16 kilometers (1.34 mi) It is considered one of the most beautifully-designed bridges in Philippines. The bridge is supported by 43 spans rising 41 meters above the sea. It has a large arch beneath which allows boats to pass.

Nijaga Park
Location: Calbayog, Samar
Named after Benedicto P. Nijaga, one of the Thirteen Martyrs who died on January 11, 1897. The park is the site of social, political, cultural, and sports activities. The Rizal monument, a fountain, and amphitheater are its focal features.

Natural

Sohoton Natural Bridge National Park
Location: Rawis, Brgy. Guirang, Basey, Samar
Covering an approximate area of 840 hectares, It is internationally known for its natural beauty expressed in its caves, subterranean rivers, waterfalls, and unique limestone formations. It is an idyllic place for recreation. The most prominent assemblage in the park is the cathedral-like caves, which are the Panhulugan I, and II, Sohoton and Bugosan. All the caves in the park are endogen caves in angular limestone cliff, which support the base of other crack system. It abounds with flowstones and dripstones.

Langun-Gobingub Cave (Calbiga Cave)
Location: Calbiga, Samar
e 2,968-hectare cave system is composed of 12 caves with a wide underground space, unique rock formations, and subterranean watercourse. The surface area of the cave has a mid-mountain forest which is the habitat of some threatened wild species like bats, cave crickets, eyeless shell fishes.

Tinago-an Cave
Location: Brgy. Longsod, Oquendo district, Calbayog City, Samar
The cave has been the main attraction for picnickers desiring to get the rare thrill and excitement of having a trip through nature-made dark tunnels. The cave made a name for itself when it was made a hideout by two men wanted by the guerrillas who hid in it for nearly two years and coming out at night in search for food. Hence, the name “Tinago-an” means hiding place.

Danao Cave
Location: Brgy. Danao I, Tinambacan District, Calbayog City, Samar
It is made up of seven (7) chambers inhabited by various species of snakes and bats as evidenced by a good deposit of guano. The cave serves as an initiating hive for those who want to acquire talisman.

Guinogo-an Cave
Location: Brgy. Lungsob, Oquendo District, Calbayog City, Samar
Its cathedral door-size entrance leads one to wade the fresh, cool water into a natural tunnel stretching through uneven ceiling touching one's head, giving the adventurer an eerie trip through the dark cave lighted torches.

Binaliw Isle
Location: Brgy. Maguino-o, Tinambacan District, Calbayog City, Samar
The islet is a potential diving spot, surrounded with aquifers equally and uniformly spread at the peripheral limits of the islet with white sand and pebbles. Beneath the deep waters are sea corals of multifarious varieties, rare white pebbles spread all over the floors, 20 types of shells, and ornamental types of aquamarine species

Mapaso Springs
Location: Brgy. Rizal II, Oquendo District, Calbayog City, Samar
“Mapaso” literally means hot. Fresh crustaceans (pokot) abound. They are naturally pinkish resembling scalded shrimps due to the high temperature.

Bangon-Bugtong Falls
Location: Brgy. San Joaquin, Calbayog City, Samar
Below the falls is a circular pond about 30 meters in diameter, wide enough for swimming and deep enough for diving. The cascading water seems to come from streams flowing endlessly, resulting from the pressure of its disgorge, which becomes even bigger in volume and noticeable as the time of the day passes.

Pan-as Falls
Location: Brgy. Pilar, Oquendo District, Calbayog City, Samar
It is surrounded with the mighty stands of rare timbers and wildlife that abound in the area. Seen from afar, it is like a long constructed boat by the mountainside and at a close up, a series of long drop of crystal water to another. At places where the cataract is quite high, the falling of water into the pool below becomes a mere mist because of its high elevation.

Lulugayan Falls and Rapids
Location: Brgy. Literon, Calbiga, Samar
Considered as the mini version of Niagra Falls, the falls is 50 meters wide and 30 meters high. Nature-lovers likewise enjoy white water rafting (rapids shooting) here.

Religious

St. Michael the Archangel Church (Basey Church)
Location: Basey, Samar
It was built during the 17th century by the Jesuits on top of a hill. It was later turned over to the Augustinians and later, in 1795, it was ceded to the Franciscans. It has significantly kept the features of a typical Spanish church, even if it was nearly destroyed in 1880 by a storm.

Saints Peter and Paul Cathedral (Calbayog Cathedral)
Location: Calbayog City, Samar
The cathedral occupies one whole block in the heart of Calbayog City. It is considered to be the biggest church in all parishes in the province. Its tell-tale dome, spire, and thick walls reveal the blending of Spanish and modern architectural designs.

St. Vincent de Paul Seminary
Location: Dagum Hills, Calbayog City, Samar
A seminary offering specialized philosophy degree for priesthood. Fronting the seminary is a huge replica of Our Lady of Fatima carved similarly to the one in Italy. Refreshing, cool mountain breeze, scenic view of Calbayog City and Samar Sea

festivals

Mayaw-Mayaw Ethnic Festival
Place: Pinabacdao, Samar
Date: May 10
“Pag-mayaw” is an old Waray word meaning to give offerings and homage to the gods and to drive away the evils spirits as well. Mayaw-Mayaw is unique as it depicts a revered tradition of the Waray people at its most authentic and original form. Participated in by all schools, civic groups, and barangays, this is a dance and drama competition with street dancing and cultural presentations.

Pahoy-Pahoy Festival
Place: Calbiga, Samar
Date: May 25
The town of Calbiga showcases giant pahoy-pahoy (scarecrows) made of indigenous materials dancing in the streets to the sound of musical instruments made up of bamboos, cans and stones that scare the maya or ricebirds. It features the legend of Pahoy as they drive off the evil spirits and ricebirds that ruined their rice lands and agriculture. They commemorate the time when the tribe "humanoid" saved the village settlers from famine.

Kaadlawan han Samar
Place: Catbalogan, Samar
Date: August 11
The event is in celebration of Samar province’s Foundation Day. It was on August 11, 1841 that Queen Isabela II of Spain declared Samar a province. It is celebrated with socio-cultural activities organized by the local government.



Web Phil Info.com

How To Get There?

By Land:
Bus transits headed to Samar from Manila or Tacloban City, Letye pass through the Pan-Philippine Highway (Maharlika Highway) and the San Juanico Bridge.

By Air-Land:
Daily flights are available from Manila to Tacloban City, Leyte. From there, there area public transports available headed towards Samar

By Sea:
The Port of Catbalogan (Piers I and II) is classified as a national port. It is a major seaport that can handle passengers and cargoes to and from Manila, Cebu and other places.

Related Links:
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