Camiguin (Tagalog pronunciation: [kamiˈɡin], (Cebuano: Probinsya sa Camiguin, Tagalog: Lalawigan ng Camiguin) is an island province of thePhilippines located in the Bohol Sea, about 10 kilometres (6.2 mi) off the northern coast of Mindanao. It is politically part of the Northern Mindanao Region of the country and formerly a part of Misamis Oriental province. Camiguin is the second-smallest in the country both in population and land area after Batanes. Mambajao is the capital of the province and its largest municipality both in area and population.
Mount Hibok-Hibok as seen from White Island
The province consists primarily of Camiguin Island, as well as a few other surrounding minor islets including:
Camiguin Island is a pearl-shaped island with an area of approximately 238 km2 (92 sq mi). The island measures about 23 kilometres (14 mi) at its longest and 14.5 kilometres (9.0 mi) at its widest breadth. The island is mountainous with the highest elevation reaching over 5,000 ft (1,500 m). It is encircled by a national road with a total length of about 64 kilometres (40 mi). As of the August 1, 2007 census, the province has a 5th class income classification with a population of 81,293.
The economy is based upon fishing and farming, with copra providing the greatest income contribution. Other agricultural products are abaca, rice, mangoes,lanzones and other fruit trees. The growing tourism industry have improved the economy of the province. Small cottage industries have increased in number to accommodate the influx of visitors.
Camiguin has three colleges, namely: Fatima College of Camiguin (FCC), Camiguin Polytechnic State College (CPSC), with a satellite campus and Camiguin School of Arts and Trades (CSAT) and a technical education offered by the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA). A complete secondary and elementary education is available as well, both in private and public. There are also day care centers which offer nursery and pre-school education.
The province has a total number of 68 day care centers managed by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and 56 public and private elementary schools. There are 13 secondary schools, 3 private institutions and the rest are government-owned. There is one special school, which accommodates to the underprivileged or special children, the Family-to-Family School and Farm. It is managed by a Non-Government Organization (NGO).
There is also the Alternative Learning System Education Sector which helps individuals through its literacy cum livelihood.
Several centuries-old Spanish Colonial and 20th century churches are found in various parts of the island.
- Santo Rosario Church: The Santo Rosario Church in the municipality of Sagay was built in 1882.
- Old Catarman Church Ruins: The church of the Old Catarman town was destroyed and partly submerged by volcanic debris during the eruption and formation of Mt. Vulcan from 1871 to 1875. Also known as Gui-ob Church, only the ruins of the church and bell tower remains of the old town. An unsightly modern white lighthouse was recentlyerected close to the bell tower.
- Baylao Church: The Church located in Brgy. Baylao in Mambajao is claimed to be miraculous attributed to saving many lives during the last volcanic eruption of Hibok-hibok.
- Churches in Camiguin
Facade of Santo Rosario Church, in Sagay
Interior of Santo Rosario Church in the town of Sagay
Interior of San Nicolas de Tolentino Church in the town of Mambajao
The Catholic Church of Catarman, Camiguin
The island of Camiguin is of volcanic origin composed of four stratovolcanoes. Each volcanoes (except Mount Guinsiliban) is made up of several flank domes. The only volcano in the island with historical eruptions is Hibok-Hibok, which last erupted in 1953. From north to south:
- Mount Hibok-Hibok (9°12′4″N 124°40′31″E) and Mount Vulcan (9°12′49″N 124°38′51″E) are the northernmost and the only active volcanic vents in Camiguin. Mt. Vulcan, ironically known as the Old Volcano [671 m (2,201 ft)], is actually the youngest volcano in the island, born in 1871 starting as a fissure vent on the northwestern flank of Mount Hibok-Hibok [4,370 feet (1,330 m)] (see Volcanic eruption below). As a parasitic cone of Hibok-Hibok, it is still considered part of volcano. Some of the other flank domes of the volcano are Carling Hill (9°12′53″N 124°40′12″E), Tres Marias Hills (9°11′23″N 124°41′14″E) and Piyakong Hill (9°12′49″N 124°38′51″E). Ilihan Crater is the site of the 1950 eruption
- Mount Timpoong is the largest mountain in Camiguin. It is composed of several domes the tallest of which is the Timpoong Peak (9°10′42.3″N 124°43′40.4″E), also the highest in Camiguin at 5,294 ft (1,614 m). The peak of Mambajao (9°9′48″N 124°43′13″E) is the second tallest at 5,143 ft (1,568 m). A lower central peak (9°10′12.7″N 124°43′27.5″E) of 5,015 ft (1,529 m) is located between the two peaks. Some of the flank vents on Mt. Timpoong are Campana Hill (9°12′1″N 124°43′2″E) and Minokol Hill (9°9′6.6″N 124°44′39.3″E).
- Mount Butay (9°7′18″N 124°45′52″E), also known as Mount Uhay, is located between the towns of Mahinog and Guinsiliban.
- Mount Guinsiliban (9°5′35.6″N 124°46′3.5″E) is located in the town of Guinsiliban. The 1,872-foot (571 m) high mountain is the southernmost volcano and the first seen coming from the port of Balingoan in mainland Mindanao.
- The Volcanoes of Camiguin
Hibok-hibok Volcano and Mt. Vulcan in the background as seen from White Island
Silhouette of Mt. Timpoong (L) and Mt. Mambajao (R), the highest peaks of the largest mountain in Camiguin, as seen from the north, across Bohol Sea
Mount Butay is located near the Port of Binone.
Mount Guisiliban is the southernmost volcano of the island.
Located just a few kilometers off the coast are the two islands of Camiguin.
- White Island is accessed from Agoho which is about 5 km (3.1 mi) west of the town of Mambajao.
- Mantigue Island can be reached from Mahinog about 14 kilometres (8.7 mi) south of Mambajao.
- Ardent Hot Spring. At the foot of Hibok-Hibok Volcano bubble the mineral pools of Ardent Hot Springs. Wisps of steam can be seen rising from the running waters heat by the cauldron of the mountain, the most recently active of the seven volcanoes on the island.
- Sto. Niño Cold Springs and Bura Natural Soda Water Swimming Pool in Catarman are other popular places to get a relaxing dip on the island.
- Tangub Hot Spring is an interesting hot spring located on the shore close to the Sunken Cemetery. Most of the spring is submerged and can be partly seen during low tide. The spring can also be examined by scuba diving or snorkeling, as visibility is excellent and it is also a recommended spot for observing underwater life.
During the volcanic birth of Mt. Vulcan that lasted from 1871 to about 1875, some areas in the town of Bonbon subsided, sinking the cemetery of the town to below sea level. The place is commemorated by a huge cross erected in 1982.
Since then the municipality of Bonbon transferred to now the town of Catarman
- Katibawasan Falls. Located 5 km (3.1 mi) southeast of Mambajao, the Katibawasan Falls cascades 250 ft (76 m) down to a pool surrounded by orchids and ferns. An invigorating dip on the pool is popular especially on warmer days and several hiking trails are within the park. This is also the favorite jump-off point for trekkers and mountaineers in search of adventure on the slopes of Mt. Timpoong.
- Tuasan Falls is located 6 km (3.7 mi) northeast of Catarman. Getting to the falls entails a very scenic hike passing through the Barrio of Mainit, Catarman and along the rocky river bed. The pool below the waterfalls is deep and clear. The surrounding scenery is unspoiled and perfect for a peaceful picnic, the only sounds around you is that of the tumbling falls and running water.