The Info List - Northern Samar

Northern Samar
(Waray: Norte san Samar; Filipino: Hilagang Samar) is a province in the Philippines
located in the Eastern Visayas
Eastern Visayas
region. Its capital is Catarman and is located at the northern portion of the island of Samar. Bordering the province to the south are the provinces of Samar
and Eastern Samar. To the northwest, across the San Bernardino Strait is Sorsogon; to the east is the Philippine Sea
Philippine Sea
and to the west is Samar


1 History 2 Geography

2.1 Topography 2.2 Climate 2.3 Administrative divisions

3 Demographics

3.1 Languages 3.2 Religion 3.3 Socio-demographic situation

4 Tourism 5 Government

5.1 List of former governors 5.2 Official provincial seal

6 Notable people 7 References 8 External links

History[edit] In 1614, the Jesuits
established a mission residence in Palapag among the Ibabao populace. These missionaries stayed until the late 17th century when they were expelled from the Philippines
and were replaced by the Franciscans. As the San Bernardino Strait
San Bernardino Strait
was along the route of the Spanish galleons plying between Manila
and Acapulco, Mexico, a royal port was established in Palapag where the richly laden Manila
galleons were protected from unfavorable winds and troubled seas. In the early years of the 16th century, shipbuilders were drafted from Palapag to the Cavite
shipyards for the construction of galleons and vessels for the conservation of defense of the island. It was also at this time that these recruits ignited the Sumoroy insurrection, which signaled a general uprising against Spain in the Visayas
and Mindanao. The insurrection simultaneously flared northward to Albay
and southward to the northern coasts of Mindanao
and then Cebu. It took over a year before the Spaniards were able to subdue the rebellion. Later in 1898, when the Americans landed on the beach of Catarman, they organized a revolutionary army led by General Vicente Lukban
Vicente Lukban
who fought the invaders armed with cannons and rifles with only bolos and paltiks. Although defeated, they, however, continued to harass the Americans through guerrilla warfare. During World War II, the people of Northern Samar
organized a platoon of volunteers supported by voluntary contributions. The contingent became a part of the Philippine National Guard in Manila. The province also helped the government by purchasing a considerable amount of bonds floated to finance the National Commission for Independence, then organized by Manuel L. Quezon
Manuel L. Quezon
after a coalition of the Nacionalista and Democrata parties were formed. Congressmen Eladio T. Balite (1st Dist. Samar), Fernando R. Veloso (2nd Dist. Samar), and Felipe J. Abrigo (3rd Dist. Samar), authored Republic Act
Republic Act
4221 which was approved by Congress in 1963. The law, ratified in a plebiscite on June 19, 1965, divided Samar
into three: Northern Samar, Eastern Samar
and (Western) Samar.[3] The first provincial officials of Northern Samar
were elected on November 14, 1967 and on January 1, 1968, they officially assumed office. Geography[edit] Northern Samar
covers a total area of 3,692.93 square kilometres (1,425.85 sq mi)[4] occupying the northern section of Samar Island in the Eastern Visayas
Eastern Visayas
region. The province is bounded by north by the San Bernardino Strait, on the east by the Pacific
Ocean, on the west by the Samar
Sea, on the southwest by Samar
and on the southeast by Eastern Samar. It ranks thirty-seventh (37th) in size among the 80 provinces of the Philippines
and accounts for practically 1.2 percent of the total land area of the country. About 52 percent of the total land area is covered by forest and 42 percent is classified as alienable and disposable. The province is composed largely of low and extremely rugged hills and small lowland areas. It also has small and discontinuous areas along the coasts and its rivers are usually accompanied by alluvial plains and valleys. The province is endowed with relatively rich and fertile soil that most crops can grow on it. Topography[edit] Northern Samar
has a very rugged terrain with restricted pocket plains and valleys. River valleys are low-lying and are often interrupted by hills, while the remaining portion is rolling, hilly, and mountainous. The interior of the mainland consists of highly dissected hills and mountain peaks. Low-lying hills are found between the coastal plains of Palapag, the river valley of Gamay, and Catubig Valley. Climate[edit] Northern Samar
falls under the intermediate type climate, which has no distinct dry and wet seasons. The rainiest months are October to January, while the driest is the month of May. Administrative divisions[edit] Northern Samar
is divided into three (3) major geographical areas, namely: Balicuatro area, Central area, and Pacific
area including Catubig Valley – the province’s rice granary. It comprises 24 towns or municipalities with 569 registered barangays. The province is divided into two legislative districts, the first district, covering the Balicuatro and most part of the Central Area, and the second district, covering the some part of the Central Area, the Pacific
Area and the Catubig Valley.  †  Provincial capital

Municipality District[4] Population ±% p.a. Area[4] Density Brgy. Coordinates[A]

(2015)[2] (2010)[5]

km2 sq mi /km2 /sq mi

Allen 1st 7000400000000000000♠4.0% 25,469 23,738 1.35% 47.60 18.38 540 1,400 20 12°30′04″N 124°16′58″E / 12.5011°N 124.2827°E / 12.5011; 124.2827 (Allen)

Biri 1st 7000190000000000000♠1.9% 11,767 10,987 1.31% 24.62 9.51 480 1,200 8 12°40′54″N 124°21′43″E / 12.6816°N 124.3619°E / 12.6816; 124.3619 (Biri)

Bobon 1st 7000370000000000000♠3.7% 23,668 20,956 2.34% 130.00 50.19 180 470 18 12°31′33″N 124°33′51″E / 12.5257°N 124.5641°E / 12.5257; 124.5641 (Bobon)

Capul 1st 7000200000000000000♠2.0% 12,679 12,659 0.03% 35.56 13.73 360 930 12 12°25′23″N 124°10′56″E / 12.4231°N 124.1821°E / 12.4231; 124.1821 (Capul)

Catarman † 1st 7001149000000000000♠14.9% 94,037 84,833 1.98% 464.43 179.32 200 520 55 12°29′59″N 124°38′11″E / 12.4996°N 124.6365°E / 12.4996; 124.6365 (Catarman)

Catubig 2nd 7000520000000000000♠5.2% 33,025 31,723 0.77% 214.99 83.01 150 390 47 12°24′35″N 125°03′11″E / 12.4097°N 125.0530°E / 12.4097; 125.0530 (Catubig)

Gamay 2nd 7000370000000000000♠3.7% 23,511 22,425 0.90% 115.10 44.44 200 520 26 12°23′12″N 125°18′05″E / 12.3867°N 125.3015°E / 12.3867; 125.3015 (Gamay)

Laoang 2nd 7000970000000099999♠9.7% 61,359 58,037 1.07% 246.94 95.34 250 650 56 12°34′07″N 125°00′55″E / 12.5685°N 125.0153°E / 12.5685; 125.0153 (Laoang)

Lapinig 2nd 7000210000000000000♠2.1% 13,020 11,744 1.98% 57.30 22.12 230 600 15 12°19′00″N 125°18′08″E / 12.3168°N 125.3023°E / 12.3168; 125.3023 (Lapinig)

Las Navas 2nd 7000600000000000000♠6.0% 37,947 36,539 0.72% 282.61 109.12 130 340 53 12°20′21″N 125°01′52″E / 12.3391°N 125.0312°E / 12.3391; 125.0312 (Las Navas)

Lavezares 1st 7000450000000000000♠4.5% 28,770 27,464 0.89% 119.50 46.14 240 620 26 12°32′06″N 124°19′49″E / 12.5349°N 124.3302°E / 12.5349; 124.3302 (Lavezares)

Lope de Vega 1st 7000230000000099999♠2.3% 14,687 13,542 1.56% 280.00 108.11 52 130 22 12°18′00″N 124°37′30″E / 12.3000°N 124.6251°E / 12.3000; 124.6251 (Lope de Vega)

Mapanas 2nd 7000220000000000000♠2.2% 14,025 12,423 2.34% 117.85 45.50 120 310 13 12°28′31″N 125°15′19″E / 12.4752°N 125.2554°E / 12.4752; 125.2554 (Mapanas)

Mondragon 1st 7000610000000000000♠6.1% 38,726 35,318 1.77% 288.90 111.54 130 340 24 12°30′58″N 124°45′09″E / 12.5161°N 124.7526°E / 12.5161; 124.7526 (Mondragon)

Palapag 2nd 7000540000000000000♠5.4% 34,286 33,453 0.47% 179.60 69.34 190 490 32 12°32′46″N 125°06′44″E / 12.5460°N 125.1122°E / 12.5460; 125.1122 (Palapag)

Pambujan 2nd 7000520000000000000♠5.2% 33,062 31,057 1.20% 163.90 63.28 200 520 26 12°33′54″N 124°55′42″E / 12.5649°N 124.9282°E / 12.5649; 124.9282 (Pambujan)

Rosario 1st 7000170000000000000♠1.7% 10,520 10,214 0.56% 31.60 12.20 330 850 11 12°31′19″N 124°25′30″E / 12.5219°N 124.4250°E / 12.5219; 124.4250 (Rosario)

San Antonio 1st 7000140000000099999♠1.4% 9,058 8,877 0.39% 27.00 10.42 340 880 10 12°24′47″N 124°16′42″E / 12.4130°N 124.2782°E / 12.4130; 124.2782 (San Antonio)

San Isidro 1st 7000420000000000000♠4.2% 26,650 24,952 1.26% 255.90 98.80 100 260 14 12°23′09″N 124°19′46″E / 12.3857°N 124.3295°E / 12.3857; 124.3295 (San Isidro)

San Jose 1st 7000280000000099999♠2.8% 17,561 16,079 1.69% 29.85 11.53 590 1,500 16 12°31′48″N 124°29′16″E / 12.5301°N 124.4878°E / 12.5301; 124.4878 (San Jose)

San Roque 2nd 7000480000000000000♠4.8% 30,580 26,323 2.90% 152.98 59.07 200 520 16 12°32′14″N 124°52′26″E / 12.5371°N 124.8740°E / 12.5371; 124.8740 (San Roque)

San Vicente 1st 7000120000000000000♠1.2% 7,856 7,447 1.02% 15.80 6.10 500 1,300 7 12°16′17″N 124°05′57″E / 12.2715°N 124.0991°E / 12.2715; 124.0991 (San Vicente)

Silvino Lobos 2nd 7000240000000000000♠2.4% 15,299 14,303 1.29% 224.20 86.56 68 180 26 12°19′31″N 124°50′45″E / 12.3252°N 124.8458°E / 12.3252; 124.8458 (Silvino Lobos)

Victoria 1st 7000230000000099999♠2.3% 14,817 13,920 1.20% 186.70 72.09 79 200 16 12°26′50″N 124°18′53″E / 12.4472°N 124.3148°E / 12.4472; 124.3148 (Victoria)

Total 632,379 589,013 1.36% 3,692.93 1,425.85 170 440 569 (see GeoGroup box)

^ Coordinates
mark the town center, and are sortable by latitude.


Population census of Northern Samar

Year Pop. ±% p.a.

1990 383,654 —    

1995 454,195 +3.21%

2000 500,639 +2.11%

2007 549,759 +1.30%

2010 589,013 +2.54%

2015 632,379 +1.36%

Source: Philippine Statistics Authority[2][5][5]

The population of Northern Samar
in the 2015 census was 632,379 people,[2] with a density of 170 inhabitants per square kilometre or 440 inhabitants per square mile. The people of Northern Samar
were previously called Ibabaonon. They are predominantly Waray-Waray or Waray, the people of Eastern Visayas or Samar-Leyte region. To distinguish themselves from the Westehanon (people from Samar) and Estehanon (from Eastern Samar) when Samar Island was split into three provinces in 1965, and the Leyteños (the people from the Leyte Island), they now call themselves as Ninorte Samarenyo or Nortehanon. Bicolano Inhabitants coming from the neighboring provinces of Sorsogon and Masbate
are also common at Northern Samar. Languages[edit]

Languages Spoken (2000)[6]















Not Reported


Majority of the people in the province of Northern Samar
speak the Ninorte Samarnon, a variation of Waray-Waray. About 4.5 percent of the population, especially in the island towns, speak Cebuano, while a minority speaks Inabaknon, a unique language said to be one of the most preserved languages to date. This is the native tongue of the populace in the island town of Capul. Ninorte Samarnon usually is further subclassified into Balicuatro, Central and Pacific
speakers. Tagalog, Bicol, and English are also widely used and understood in Northern Samar. Religion[edit] The communities of this province are predominantly Catholic (80%).[citation needed] Other religious groups are Members Church of God International (Ang Dating Daan), Iglesia ni Cristo, Philippine Independent Church (Aglipayan), Seventh-day Adventists, Jehovah’s Witnesses, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
and other Christian sects. A small number of population are Muslim. Socio-demographic situation[edit] Northern Samar
is classified as a second class province, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority, the data gathered from the Department of Finance Department Order No.23-08 (Effective July 29, 2008).[4] Catarman is the capital town of the province where most political and economic activities take place. It is the seat of administration and the center of trade and commerce as well as industry. The province is considered a very rural area with 65% of its people residing in the countryside. Tourism[edit] Northern Samar
has several tourism potentials that remain undiscovered by tourists. Some of these include old churches, waterfalls, rivers, caves, virgin forests, and beaches. Among the last frontiers in the country, its rugged coastline of limestone cliffs along the Pacific Ocean
Pacific Ocean
is a historical landmark. During the Spanish colonial era, Samar
island was the first Philippine landfall seen by the Manila
galleons as they approached the end of their long voyage from Acapulco. Entering the waters of the Philippine archipelago, the galleons called at the fortified island of Capul
off Samar, offered thanks for a safe crossing at the Jesuit church, and then negotiated the rough waters of narrow San Bernardino Strait
San Bernardino Strait
toward Manila, their final destination. Capul
also became the last stop on Philippine soil of the departing galleons before the long, often treacherous trans- Pacific
sail to Acapulco
in Mexico. Government[edit] Governor

Jose L. Ong, Jr. (NUP)

Vice Governor

Gary M. Lavin (NUP)

Congressional districts

1st district: Raul A. Daza (LP) 2nd district: Edwin S. Ongchuan (NUP)

List of former governors[edit]

Irene Balite (1967-1971) Edilberto A. del Valle (1971-1980) Reynaldo A. del Valle (1980-1986) Justiniano M. Singzon1 (1986-1988) Harlin C. Abayon (1988-1998) Madeleine M. Ong (1998-2001) Raul A. Daza (2001-2010) Paul R. Daza (2010-2013)

1 Appointed

Official provincial seal[edit]

The Coat of Arms of Samar
represents the political, geographical description, historical, economic, and social representation and allegorical ideas of the province. The letters N and S represent Northern Samar. The map of Northern Samar
represents the geography and 24 municipalities of the province, including the five island towns. The galleon represents the Spanish conquistadors that reached the land of the Ibabao to preach the gospel of Christianity, spread the Creed of Roman Catholicism and introduce civil governance thru the Royal Port of Palapag in 1640. Mount Bubuya (Palapag Mesa) represents the highest mountain range in Palapag, where Agustin Sumuroy and his men retreated to and encamped after killing Fr. Miguel Balberan, thus starting the Sumuroy Rebellion. The rice field, abaca, timber, and coconut are all economic representations. The following are the allegorical ideas of the province: Blue, the color is symbolic of vast marine and aquatic resources, a source of livelihood for the fisher folks of the coastal towns. Tangerine represents the cheerfulness, high spirits, and optimism of the people of the province. Yellow represents golden harvest, and abundance of resources. White symbolizes transparency in governance. The torch is meant to illuminate the province and set it afire with quality education, a primary thrust of the provincial government. Rope ties the emblems together in a circular shape, it represents equality in rights and justice, and unity for peace and development. Notable people[edit]

Katrina Halili
Katrina Halili
- Filipina actress live in Laoang, Northern Samar Ryza Cenon
Ryza Cenon
- Filipina actress live in Catarman, Northern Samar Christian Mananguite - Filipino blogger live in Catarman, Northern Samar Maria Gail Tobes - Miss Manila
2017 live in Bobon, Northern Samar Samuel R. Martires - Supreme Court Associate Justice live in Lavesares and Palapag, Northern Samar


^ "List of Provinces". PSGC Interactive. Makati City, Philippines: National Statistical Coordination Board. Retrieved 12 April 2013.  ^ a b c d Census of Population (2015). "Region VIII (Eastern Visayas)". Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay. PSA. Retrieved 20 June 2016.  ^ " Republic Act
Republic Act
No. 4221 - An Act Creating the Provinces of Northern Samar, Eastern Samar
and Western Samar". Chan Robles Virtual Law Library. 19 June 1965. Retrieved 16 April 2016.  ^ a b c d "Province: Northern Samar". PSGC Interactive. Quezon
City, Philippines: Philippine Statistics Authority. Retrieved 8 January 2016.  ^ a b c Census of Population and Housing (2010). "Region VIII (Eastern Visayas)". Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay. NSO. Retrieved 29 June 2016.  ^ Table 4. Household Population by Ethnicity and Sex: Northern Samar, 2000

External links[edit]

Map all coordinates using: OpenStreetMap · Google Maps

Download coordinates as: KML · GPX

Northern Samar
travel guide from Wikivoyage Media related to Northern Samar
at Wikimedia Commons Geographic data related to Northern Samar
at OpenStreetMap Official Webpage of the Office of the Secretary to the Sangguniang Panlalawigan of the Province of Northern Samar Philippine Standard Geographic Code Local Governance Performance Management System

Places adjacent to Northern Samar

/ San Bernardino Strait Philippine Sea

/ Samar

Northern Samar

Philippine Sea

Samar Eastern Samar

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Province of Northern Samar

Catarman (capital)


Allen Biri Bobon Capul Catarman Catubig Gamay Laoang Lapinig Las Navas Lavezares Lope de Vega Mapanas Mondragon Palapag Pambujan Rosario San Antonio San Isidro San Jose San Roque San Vicente Silvino Lobos Victoria

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