THE PROVINCE AT A
just as well be dubbed as the "Resort Province of the
Philippines" because of the abundance of hot springs, lakes and
waterfalls. This is attributable to the fact that Laguna is the
only province with ground water that flows at 300 million
gallons a day. Indeed, so much water abounds. With Southeast
Asia’s largest fresh-water lake, the Laguna de Bay, plus
innumerable springs, the seven lakes of San Pablo, the famous
Pagsanjan Falls and the regular blessings of rain showers,
Laguna stays lush throughout the year.
For vegetation needs water, it is no surprise that Laguna stays
green whatever season. Thus, it can likewise aptly be called the
"Garden Province". Fragrant sampaguitas, and delicate orchids
are grown in this province all year-round. Meanwhile, August to
September is harvest season in the lanzones plantations all over
the province. Laguna has much to offer, having been successfully
able to preserve most of its rustic beauty and appeal despite
the level of industrialization that it has achieved. It managed
to blend the best of both the agricultural and industrial
With its proximity to Manila, Laguna easily lures the city
dwellers who wish to "escape" from the chaos of the concrete and
asphalt jungle. It offers a convenient alternative for those who
want to relax without going too far. It is a one and a half to
two hours drive from Manila.
of Laguna was named after Laguna de Bay, the body of water that
forms the province’s northern boundary. In turn, Laguna de Bay
was named after the town of bay which was the first provincial
capital. This province along with its surrounding regions were
conquered for Spain by Capt. Juan de Salcedo in 1571 and seven
years hence, the Franciscan friars started the Christianization
of the province.
Laguna became a bloody battleground several times. The first
instance was the Chinese revolt in 1603 and then again in 1639.
The British invasion in 1762-1764, saw thousands of Filipinos
fighting in defense of the province. This battle led by Captain
Thomas Backhouse met resistance from the band of Filipino
volunteers led by Francisco de San Juan of Pagsanjan.
The first Filipino uprising against the Spanish misrule was led
by Hirmano Pule in 1840. Filipino resentment against the
Spaniards was aggravated by the execution of Dr. Jose Rizal and
thus, by 1896, thousands of patriotic inhabitants of the
province had joined the revolutionary Katipunan.
Laguna was one of the first eight provinces to rise in revolt
against the Spanish rule. The ill-equipped Filipino forces, led
by Gen, Paciano Rizal of Calamba, Gen. Severino Taino of
Pagsanjan, Gen, Aueda Kagabagan of Calauan, and Gen. Miguel
Malvar of Batangas, fought the Spanish enemies until they won on
August 31,1898 with the surrender of the last Spanish garrison
in Sta, Cruz.
On January 23,1899, Laguna expressed its full support to the
First Philippine Republic which was declared in Malolos, Bulacan.
Two natives of Pagsanjan namely, Don Higino Benitez Abad, Don
Graciano Cordero, were there to witness and participate in this
historic event. The eruption of the Filipino-American war in
1899-1901 saw Generals Juan Cailles and Paciano Rizal leading
the defense of Laguna until surrender was inevitable. Under the
American Flag, Cailles was named the Filipino Governor of
After the war, Laguna progressed rapidly in peace. Schools were
established, various public services were instituted and roads
were built. In 1917, the Manila Railroad Company extended its
line to Laguna as far as Pagsanjan. With the onset of the
Japanese occupation, Laguna was the center of resistance despite
the presence of some "Makipili" traitors.
Today, Laguna is a thriving province. Its fertile lands produce
millions of pesos worth of coconuts, rice, sugar, citrus fruits,
lanzones, and other agricultural products. Its tourist spots
also attract a multitude of both foreign and domestic tourists.
By and large,
Laguna’s economy is still based on agriculture. However, in the
recent years, agricultural development has been complemented by
the proliferation of light to medium scale industries. Before
1973, the processing of agricultural products and making light
handicrafts were the major manufacturing activities in Laguna.
Today, textile spinning, weaving and finishing, chemical,
automotive parts, ceramics, wood and paper products industries
have been established. It is foreseen that more factories will
be put up in Laguna in the near future.
HOW TO GET THERE
Superhighway, Laguna is 1-2 hours drive from Manila.