Zambales is a province of the Philippines located in the Central Luzonregion. Its capital is Iba. Zambales borders Pangasinan to the north, Tarlacand Pampanga to the east, Bataan to the south and the South China Sea to the west. With a land area of 3,830.83 km2, Zambales is the second largest among the seven provinces of Central Luzon. The province is noted for itsmangoes, which are abundant from January to April.
Zambales does not have a functional airport - the closest airport is Clark International airport. Subic Bay International Airport, which is located in Cubi Point in the Subic Bay Freeport Zone is no longer functional for international or domestic flights.
The area now occupied by Zambales was first explored by the Spanish in 1572, led by Juan de Salcedo. Among the earliest towns founded wereSubic (1572), Botolan (1572), Masinloc (1607), Iba (1611), and Santa Cruz(1612). Masinloc became the province's first capital. However, the capital was moved among the last three towns above during its history before settling in Iba, due to its strategic location. Seven of the province's original northern towns, which included Bolinao, Infanta and Alaminos were later transferred under the jurisdiction of Pangasinan because of their distance from the capital. The first civil governor of Zambales during the American era was Potenciano Lesaca from 1901-1903.
Zambales Day is celebrated every August 30.
There are a number of higher educational institutions in the province. The Ramon Magsaysay Technological University, the first state university in the province can be found in Iba. It has also satellite campuses in the municipalities of Sta. Cruz, Candelaria, Masinloc, Botolan, San Marcelino, Castillejos, and in the city of Olongapo. St. Joseph College-Olongapo, a college run by the Roman Catholic Church can be found in Olongapo City. The Columban College, run by the Catholic Church can be found also in Olongapo. The Magsaysay Memorial College is also run by the Roman Catholic Church and can be found in San Narciso.
Tourism plays a large role in the economy of Zambales. Local and foreign tourist flock its many beaches creating many job opportunities and contributing to the economy. Most of the province is still agricultural but there are considerable industrial zones that provide jobs not just for residents of Zambales but also for neighboring provinces. Mining has recently been booming in Zambales where there is an abundant deposit of Nickel and other minerals.
Zambales has 173 kilometres (107 mi) of beaches, with coral reefs, dive spots, surfing areas, hotels and day-use beach huts. The province is approximately a 3 to 4 hour drive from Manila, depending on traffic.