Camarines Sur

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Province of Camarines Sur
[[Image:Ph seal camarines sur.png|250px]]
[[Image:Ph locator map camarines sur.png|250px]]
Region Bicol Region (Region V)
Governor Luis Raymond F. Villafuerte, Jr.
Barangays 1,063
Physical characteristics
Area 5,266.8 km²
(17th largest)
Total (2000) 1,551,549
(15th largest)
Density 295/km²
(22nd highest)

Camarines Sur is located in the central part of Bicol region, situated at the southeastern portion of Luzon. It is bounded on the north by the Philippine Sea, on the east by the Maquenda Channel, on the south by the Province of Albay, on the west by the Ragay Gulf, and on the northwest by the province of Camarines Norte and Quezon.

It has a land area of 5,266 square kilometers with 34 municipalities and two cities. In May 2000, it had a population of 1,551,549 composed of Bicolanos, Tagalogs, Visayas and Ilocanos. It is considered as the largest among the six provinces in Bicol both in terms of population and land area.


People and culture

Population. According to the May 2000 census, there are a total of 1,551,549 residents in Camarines Sur, making it the most populous in the region and the 15th most populous in the whole country. The same census also states that Camarines Sur has 288,172 households with an average household size of 5.37 persons, significantly higher than the national average of 4.99. The annual growth rate is 1.86%, much lower than the national growth rate of 2.36%. This rate of growth will double the population of Camarines Sur in 38 years.

Languages. Being in the Bicol Region, the main language spoken in Camarines Sur is Bikol. Filipino linguists consider the dialect of Bikol spoken around Naga City, Bicol Central (also known as Bikol Naga, not to be confused with Bikol Canaman, the purest dialect of Bikol according to Jesuit Anthropologist Frank Lynch, S.J.). Some of the other dialects spoken in the province are Buhi-non (a dialect of Bicol Albay), spoken in the southern part of the province around Lake Buhi, and Rinconada Bikol (also known as Bikol Iriga), which is used in the area around Iriga City. A dialect of Naga Bikol, called Partido is used in the eastern portion of the province around Lagonoy Gulf. Most inhabitants understand Tagalog and English.


Agri-based, producing rice, corn, feedmeal, freshwater fish, livestock. Entrepreneurs engage in trading, often branching out towards neighboring provinces in the south as local demand might be limited, indicated by its mostly 3rd-5th income class municipalities.

Lake Buhi is where the smallest commercially-harvested fish can be found, the Sinarapan (Mistichthys luzonensis).


Pre Spanish Colonialism

Lagonoy Camarines Sur...

Spanish Colonialism

It was part of Ambos Camarines.

Filipino-American war period

Period under the American Colonialism

The Province was Politically and economically controlled by the Americans and their local puppets most particularly local elites.

Period under the Japanese Colonialism

In May of 1942, Guerilla forces entered the town of Naga and freed Japanese Prisoners from the "kapitolyo" including foreigners who where working at foreign owned companies, including the mining companies, operatig in the region.

It was during this time that the invaders made the Ateneo de Naga as one of their Garrisons.

Post World War II

Martial Law

In was during this period that the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) organized the New People's army in the Province. Under the leadership of Romulo Jallores and his Brother, they organized a small group of armed resistance to the Marcos Regime somewhere in the Caramoan Peninsula. This group was to organize the Armed rebellion against the Marcos dictatorship in the bicol region.

Post 1986 people power uprising

The family of Villafuerte's was the dominant family holding the political power of the province. While it was the Family of the Fuentebella holding the political power of the third district.

Post 2001 people power uprising




City/Municipality No. of
Baaoseal.jpg Baao 30 143.05 46,693 Quirino Boncayao Jr.
Balatan 17 63.720 22,537 Nena B. Borja
Bato 33 98.720 42,739 Jeanette Bernaldez
Bombon 8 44.20 12,843 Embot Angeles
Buhiseal.jpg Buhi 38 191.79 67,762 Rey P. Lacoste
Bulaseal.jpg Bula 33 151.25 57,474 Benjamin S. Decena
Cabusaoseal.gif Cabusao 9 46.81 16,201 Norberto U. Genova
Calabangaseal.jpg Calabanga 48 163.84 67,408 Evelyn S. Yu
Camaliganseal.jpg Camaligan 13 13.00 19,188 Rolando Eduardo
Canamanseal.gif Canaman 24 27.41 27,719 Emmanuel S. Requejo
Caramoan 49 225.01 39,642
Del Gallego 32 286.76 20,456
Gainza 8 18.21 8,412
Garchitorena 23 218.12 23,021 Saulon Demetrio
Goaseal.jpg Goa 34 210.38 48,490 Antero S. Lim
Irigaseal.jpg Iriga City 36 119.63 88,476 Madeleine A. Gazmen
Lagonoyseal.jpg Lagonoy 38 42,636 Delfin Pilapil
Libmanan 75 336.20 88,476 Rodolfo A. Jimenez Sr.
Lupi 38 253.12 26,148 Roberto M. Matamorosa
Magaraoseal.jpg Magarao 15 39.01 20,964 Nelson B. Julia
Milaorseal.jpg Milaor 20 23.41 22,635 Roger Flores
Minalabac 25 156.13 41,734 Leovigildo D. Basmayor Jr.
Nabuaseal.jpg Nabua 42 96.23 70,909
Fernando D. Simbulan
Ph seal nagacity.png Naga City 27 77.48 137,810 Jesse M. Robredo
Ocampo 25 118.33 36,316
Pamplona 17 80.62 29,177
Pasacaoseal.jpg Pasacao 19 149.54 38,423
Pilitownseal.jpg Pili 26 122.65 67,393 Alex San Luis
Presentacion 18 16,410
Ragayseal.jpg Ragay 38 272.35 47,743 Ricky E. Aquino
Sagñay 19 108.19 26,619 Roberto A. Briones
San Fernando 22 27,433 Fermin Mabulo
San Jose 29 39.01 32,512 Gilmar Pacamarra
Sipocotseal.jpg Sipocot 46 211.60 56,576
Siruma 22 127.43 16,339
Tigaonseal.jpg Tigaon 23 91.02 40,210 Arnie Fuentebella
Tinambac 44 314.65 55,608 Ruel Velarde


Terrain. Camarines Sur lies at the center of the Bicol Peninsula. The province is also the largest in the Bicol Region with a land area of 5,266.8 square kilometers. At the center of the province is Bicol Plain. Surrounding it are mountains, two of which are Mount Isarog and Mount Iriga. The eastern part of the province lies on the mountainous Caramoan Peninsula, which faces the island of Catanduanes to the east.

Except for some highlands found in some island towns such as Ocampo, Baao and Iriga, the rest are mountain ranges, which bordered the rugged coastlines. They surround the vast fertile plains and arable lowlands except those along found in Nato, Sagnay, Sabang and San Jose beaches in Partido, San Miguel, Cabusao and Calabanga.

Camarines Sur boasts of three beautiful lakes namely: Baao, Bato and Buhi and four mountains such as: Isarog, Iriga, Buhi and Tangcong Vaca.

The Bicol River drains the central and southern parts of the province into San Miguel Bay. Mt. Asog is surrounded by three lakes: Buhi, Bato, and Baao.

Climate. The climate in Camarines Sur like most of the rest of the country is very tropical. It is dry from March to May and wet the rest of the year. Annual average rainfall is 2,565 millimeters. Camarines Sur has an average temperature of 27.0 °C and a relative humidity of 25.8%.

Tourist Attractions

Camarines Sur has a lot of popular destinations and attractions that local and foreign tourists alike could revel and take pride, from picturesque scenery to ancient landmarks. The following are some of the most popular tourist attractions in the region:

Religious Sites

  • Bula Church, Bula - One of the first four parishes established in the province by the Franciscan missionaries who came in the Bicol region in 1578.
  • Ladrillo Church of Quipayo, Calabanga - A unique brick-made church located in Calabanga and was constructed in 1616. Rare artifacts were excavated in this church and are displayed in a museum behind the church altar.
  • Basilica Minore, Naga - Established only in 1985, this church is the home to the miraculous image of the Patroness of Bicolandia, Nuestra Señora de Peñafrancia where thousands of pilgrims flock every September to join the fiesta and venerate the virgin.
  • San Francisco Church, Naga - Built in 1578 by the Franciscan friars. It is the first Catholic Church in Naga City.
  • Emerald Grotto of Our Lady of Lourdes, Iriga - is a man-made shrine built atop the historic Calvario Hill. This is where the Tinagba Festival culminates with the offering of the first and freshest harvest.

Historical Spots

  • Leaning Tower of Bombon, Bombon - It is Camarines Sur's counterpart but not exactly a replica of the very famous Leaning Tower of Pisa in Italy. A 15-minute drive from the City of Naga to Bombon.
  • Spanish Fort Ruins, San Jose - A glance back to the 17th century, this structure used to be a Spanish fort that was once raided by Moro pirates.

Major Attractions

  • Lake Buhi - Internationally known for being the home of the world’s smallest fish called Sinarapan. The little wonder, measuring 7 to 10 mm long has often stirred the interest of many tourists that they make a point of visiting the lake habitat of the famous creature, which has been included in the Guinness Book of World Records.
  • Mt. Asog - Also called it Mt. Iriga, this extinct volcano has an elevation of about 4,823 feet. The eruption in 1611 caused the existence of Lake Buhi in the province.
  • Culapnitan Cave, Libmanan - Nineteen limestone caves that house thousands of bats.
  • Nalalata Falls, Bula - An impressive gush of water that provides a cool mist and spray.

See the Camarines Sur Tourist Itinerary for details.


External Links



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