The Province of Masbate lies at the center of the Philippine Archipelago. It is composed of a wedge-shaped mainland (Masbate), two major islands (Ticao and Burias) and 14 small islands. It is bounded on the north by the Bicol Mainland, on the south by the Visayan Sea, on the west by Sibuyan Sea and on the east by the Burias Pass, Ticao Pass and Samar Sea.

The province covers a total land area of 4,047.7 square kilometers. It is politically subdivided into three congressional districts, 20 municipalities, one city and 550 barangays. Masbate had a population of 707,668 as of the 2000 census, growing at an average rate of 1.71 percent from 1995 to 2000. The province had an average population density of 174.8 persons per square kilometer.

Masbate is the biggest cattle raising province in the region. Its main economic activity is agriculture with copra, rice, corn and tobacco as its main products. Fishing is also a major industry in the province. Until lately, the province is the site of the biggest gold mining operation in the region. Other minerals found in the island province are manganese and limestone.

Due to its geographic location, Masbate is a melting pot of dialects and cultures. Residents in the capital town of Masbate speak the native Masbateño with a mixture of the Bicol dialect; natives of Cataingan, Palanas, and Dimasalang along its east coast use Samar-Visayan; residents from Pio V. Corpus, Cataingan and Placer in the south speak Bohol and Cebu Visayan; along the western coast of Mandaon and Balud, people converse in Ilongo and Capiceño; natives of the Burias island talk in variants of the Bicol dialect and Visayan due mainly to the droves of migrants to the island during the sixties.

Where to go and What to see in Masbate

Source: NSCB-Regional Unit V, Legazpi City, Philippines

PROVINCE OF MASBATE AT A GLANCE

Income Class:  2nd City: 1 Municipality: 20 Barangay: 550 District: 3

As of March 2001
City/Municipality Income Class District

AROROY

3rd Class 2nd

BALENO

5th Class 2nd

BALUD

4th Class 2nd

BATUAN

5th Class 1st

CATAINGAN

4th Class 3rd

CAWAYAN

4th Class 3rd

CLAVERIA

4th Class 1st

DIMASALANG

5th Class 3rd

ESPERANZA

5th Class 3rd

MANDAON

4th Class 2nd

CITY OF MASBATE (Capital)

- 2nd

MILAGROS

3rd Class 2nd

MOBO

5th Class 2nd

MONREAL

5th Class 1st

PALANAS

5th Class 3rd

PIO V. CORPUZ (LIMBUHAN)

5th Class 3rd

PLACER

4th Class 3rd

SAN FERNANDO

5th Class 1st

SAN JACINTO

5th Class 1st

SAN PASCUAL

4th Class 1st

USON

4th Class 3rd

TOPOGRAPHICAL AND HYDROLOGICAL FEATURES

The island of Masbate lies exactly at the center of the Philippine Archipelago. Looking like an arrowhead with its tip pointing towards the north. It encloses the Asian Gulf which extends up to the Visayan Sea. The Jintolo Channel separates it from the Panay Island. On the northwestern coast of the island is the Sibuyan Sea. On the northwest tip, limestone cliffs rise almost perpendicularly along the water line. On the interior surface, low rolling hills are cascading with verdant plants and greenery.

Masbate is composed of three main islands: namely, Masbate, Ticao and Burias. These islands are separated by the following: Masbate Pass, separating Masbate Island from Ticao Island; Ticao Pass, separating Masbate Island from Sorsogon and Burias Pass separating Burias Island from Sorsogon. Several small islets could be found on its surrounding territory especially on the north of the Visayas and southwest of the Bicol Peninsula.

LAND AREA (hectares) 404,769 (23% percent of the region's land area)

 Certified Alienable & Disposable land

263,384 hectares (65.07% of the province' land area) or (14.93 % of the region's land area)

 Forest land

141,385 hectares ( 34.92% of the province' land area) or (8.01% of the region's land area)
 CITY  MASBATE CITY
POPULATION (2002 )
  Male 
  Female
702,940
355,490
347,450
NO. OF FAMILIES ENGAGED IN AGRICULTURE (1999) 92,610
CLIMATE The hottest month is May with a maximum temperature of 34.0 degrees Celsius.

For more information: http://ecommunity.ncc.gov.ph/masbate/

BACK TO REGIONAL PROFILE