Iloilo, the second oldest city in the country, is also known as the "Queen City of the South." Iloilo is a port city at the center of the Philippine archipelago, but nevertheless, is considered the bowl of Western Visayas, owing to its fertile soil suitable for any kind of agricultural products. It is a city that throbs with promise and potential, mainly due to its rich aquatic resources and abundant mineral deposits.

Iloilo has a rich colonial past coupled with a colorful cultural heritage. It boasts of different festivals, historic landmarks, excellent cuisines and delicacies, calming white sand beaches and resorts, and a wide array of recreation and entertainment, to while away the time of tourists and shoppers.

Irong-Irongappears in the Maragtas legend of the coming of the ten Bornean datus to Panay who bartered gold for the plains and valleys of the island from a local Ati chieftain. One datu, Paiburong by name, was given the territory of Irong-Irong in what is now Iloilo. For 300 years before the coming of the Spaniards, the islanders lived in comparative prosperity and peace under an organized government and such laws as the Code of Kalantiaw.

In 1566, the Spaniards under Miguel Lopez de Legazpi came to Panay and established a settlement in Ogtong (now Oton, Iloilo). He appointed Gonzalo Ronquillo as deputy encomiendero, who in 1581 moved the seat of spanish power to La Villa de Arevalo, named in honor of his hometown of Avila in Spain. By 1700 due to recurrent raids by Moro pirates, Dutch and English privateers, the Spaniards moved to the Village of Irong-Irong, where close to the mouth of the river they built Fort San Pedro. Irong-Irong or Ilong-Ilong which the Spaniards later shortened to Iloilo later became the capital of the province.

Its capital which is of the same name became a chartered city on August 25, 1937.

Negrenses, as practically all Filipinos, are poly-lingual. Of the 87 dialects in the country, two Visayan dialects are predominantly used in the province: Ilonggo, spoken by 80-90% of the populace, and Cebuano, used by the rest. English and Filipino are taught in elementary and high school. Spanish and other languages are also taught in colleges and universities. English, is also widely spoken.

Back to the Top 


  Information provided by Department of Tourism. Government of Philippines.


Home | Bhutan | Brunei | Cambodia | China-Yunnan | East Timor | Hong Kong | India | Indonesia | Japan | Kazakstan | Korea | Kyrgystan | Laos | Malaysia Maldives | Mongolia | Myanmar | Nepal | Pakistan | Philippines | Singapore | Sri Lanka | Tajikistan | Taiwan | Thailand | Tibet | Turkmenistan | Vietnam Uzbekistan


Website partner : and Hotels around Asia.
Version Francaise :

Copyright © 2002 Orasia co.,ltd. ( All rights reserved. Reproduction without permission prohibited.