Historic Vigan, A UNESCO World Heritage Site

Vigan, the provincial capital of Ilocos Sur in Luzon northwest region on the Mestizo River, was built by the Spaniards in 1572, their third oldest settlement on the islands after Cebu and Intramuros. Unlike Intramuros, it was never fortified. It has some of the Philippine’s best remaining Spanish colonial architecture. Before the Spanish arrived, trade … More Historic Vigan, A UNESCO World Heritage Site

A New Specie of Ancient Human Discovered in the Philippines

  The landmark discovery announced in Nature on Wednesday, April 10, 2019 makes Luzon the third Southeast Asian island in the last 15 years to bear signs of ancient human activity. Homo luzonensis, a newly discovered human specie unknown to science, was found in Callao Cave in Peñablanca, Cagayan in northern Philippines. The specie is … More A New Specie of Ancient Human Discovered in the Philippines

Butuan, the oldest Philippine settlement and the Balangays

  Before there was Philippines, there was already Butuan, a formal settlement along the banks of Agusan River which maybe the site of the oldest human settlement in the Philippines. Being an archipelago, the Philippines from the beginning is a seafaring nation. Because of Butuan’s location, the Butuanos were skilled boat builders and expert seafarers. … More Butuan, the oldest Philippine settlement and the Balangays

What is a Barangay?

  Barangay originated from the word “balangay”, a kind of sailboat that originally brought settlers of Malay stock from Borneo to the Philippines. It is known as the oldest watercraft found in the Philippines, carbon dated to 320 AD. In the early Filipino settlements, the real social unit in the Philippine society is the barangay. … More What is a Barangay?

The Coming of Islam in the Philippines

Islam was referred to as mohammedanism when I was growing up in the Philippines. There were several religious sects in the country and one of them was mohammedanism, not Islam. Mohammedans (Muslims) practiced mohammedanism. Most of the muslims lived in Mindanao and Sulu Archipelago. Spaniards called them moros because of their perceived resemblance to the … More The Coming of Islam in the Philippines

Wang Wanggao in search of Limahong

The Viceroy of Fokien, having heard of Limahong’s daring exploits, had commissioned a ship of war to discover the whereabouts of Limahong, his imperial master’s old enemy. Wang Wanggao, known in Spanish sources as Omocon, who was commissioned to capture Limahong dead or alive, arrived in Philippine waters and encountered the Spanish soldiers in Bolinao, … More Wang Wanggao in search of Limahong