No. of Towns: 46 municipalities, 2 cities
Land Area: 5,368.18 sq. km.
Date Founded: 1611
Brief History. Created in 1580 by Gov. Gen. Ronquillo de Penaloza. Pangasinan was the earliest political and administrative unit in the Philippines. It was officially conquered and colonized by D. Martin de Goite in 1571. At the time, its territorial jurisdiction included the present province of Zambales and part of LaUnion and Tarlac. Lingayen was designated and remained up to the present the provincial capital. Binalatongan later named San Carlos was the largest town both in size and population. Dagupan then named Bacnitan was a sitio of Lingayen. It was converted into a regular town by the Augustinians in 1590. After the rebellion led by Andres Malong in 1660. Bacnotan was called nandagagupan then simplified to Dagupan which became the city´s official name since 1720.By middle of the 19th century, the northern towns of Agoo to Bacnotan were separated from Pangasinan and became parts of the province of La Union. In 1875, its territorial bounderies were further diminished when Paniqui and other towns south of it were affixed to Tarlac.
Geography. The province occupies the northern portion of the central plains of Luzon with an east-west configuration that extends into a peninsula form jutting into the China Sea. Its bounderies are Lingayen Gulf, La Union and Benguet on the north; Nueva Vizcaya on the northeast; Nueva Ecija on the east; Tarlac on the south and Zambales and China Sea on the west.The province is accessible from Manila via the Manila North Road. It is approximately 170 km. north of Manila and about 50 kilometers southwest of Baguio City.
San Carlos City is situated in Central Pangasinan and approximately twenty minutes ride southward from Dagupan.
Political Subdivisions. Pangasinan has 46 municipalities and 2 cities. Lingayen is the capital of the province. Dagupan City is composed of 31 barangays, while San Carlos has 86.
Climate. The province experieces two pronounced seasons – dry from November to April and wet from May to October. Temperature from the lowlamds is greater than 7°C compared to the highlands. Coolest temperature occurs during December to February ranging from 24°C. Hottest months are April and May.
People. Pangasinan´s population is made up of Pangasinenses and Ilocanos. There are also Chinese mestizos, especially in Lingayen, who are descendants from the warriors of Limahong who were unable to escape. Today, they are a vital force in commerce.
Language. English and Pilipinos are widely spoken. The major dialects are Pangasinan in the central section and Ilocano in the eastern and western towns. Bolinao has a dialect of its own.
Business and Industry. Pangasinan is the second largest rice grower in the Philippines. Fishing is another industry. Along the golf shore, marine life is scooped with hand-held nets. In the open sea, it is done in outrigger formations. In rivers, the “salambao” or fishing raft is used. Inland ponds culture some of the best “bangus” or milkfish, prawn, and tilapia. The L & P´s Tilapia Hatchery in the municipality of Binmaley is well-known for its well-bred “Tilapia Nilotica” fingerlings (known internationally as Nile Tilapia). Its clientele comprises of fisheries both from the government and private sectors. Its expertise in quality breeding has drawn international student-trainees from as far as Europe.Along with saltmaking in the towns of Dasol and Infanta, Lingayen is famous for its “bagoong” industry. “Bagoong” is a femented mixture of salt and “alamang” or tiny fish. Other principal products are tobacco, coconut, garlic, vegetables, and mango. Cottage industries include bamboocraft, rattancraft, shellcraft, weaving, pottery, and furniture-making.Points of Interst
Lingayen Public Beach. The landing place of Gen. Douglas Mac. Arthur when he returned with his Liberation forces in helping liberate Northern Luzon. Facilities like picnic sheds and bathhouses were put up by the Philippine Tourism Authority about 20 meters away from the shoreline. Lately sheds have mushroomed near the edge of the water leaving almost nothing for people to walk on during high tide.
White Beach. The landing area of Lt. Gen. Homma, commander of the Japanese Imperial Expeditionary Forces on December 24, 1941. It is an area stretching from Nibaliw West to Bolasi, San Fabian and accessible via Damortis-San Fabian Road. Its seafront offers resorts, lodging houses and restaurants.
Limahong Channel. The Chinese corsair, Limahong, having been foiled of his attemp to find a colony on the shore of Manila Bay, left a landmark in Pangasinan – the Limahong Channel – a tunnel dug for six months and which serves as his escape route towards the Lingyen Gulf. This channel is found in Lingayen.
Oceanographic Marine Laboratory. Situated at Lucap, and os operated by the Department of Agriculture.
Bolinao Museum. The museum beckons studies-inclined tourists to its preserves of important archaeological finds mostly Tang, Sung and Ming porcelains and some skeletal remains amusingly ornamented with gold florets in their teeth. Located before the town proper of Bolinao.
Hundred Islands National Park. Scattered off the coast of Lucap, Alaminos are over a hundred islands and islets often visited by tourists because of their natural beauty. On many points between the islets, the water is shallow enough for swimming, boating and snorkeling. The Quezon Island is most frequented because of its facilities like picnic sheds, toilets and viewdecks. Facilities for camping are available at the Children´s Island. These can be reach by hiring motorized bancas at the wharf in Lucap.
Santiago Island. Situated off the northeast coast of Bolinao about 96.7 kms. from Dagupan City, this island is a haven for scuba divers attracted by its rich preserves of corals and shells. It can be reached by a motorized banca from the town proper of Bolinao.
Agno Umbrella Rocks. These fern are decorated boulders looking like umbrellas dot on the beach of Sabangan, Agno. The place is about 30-minute ride from Alaminos.
Binmatya Springs. It is closed to Mabini too. Water flows into a rocky depressions where one can bathe.
Manleluag Hot Spring. Located in Mangatarem, about 7 kms. uphill climb along the highway. The Bureau of Forest Development maintains the resort.
Quibuar Spring. Pozorrubio.
Balungao Spring. Balungao.
Blue Beach. A natural treasure in Dagupan City where Gen. Douglas Mc. Arthur landed on January 9, 1945, an event that is immortalized in the country´s history. Today the beach is home to thousands of tourists who enjoy its fine sand and its marine attractions.
Church of St. James. The church was built by the Augustinians in Bolinao in 1609. It houses wooden images nowadays a rarity, with the toll of time and the elements blurring their finely sculptured features. The antique size altar is flanked by two grinning tongue protruding aztec visages presumably of Mexican influence and brought over by the galleons trade.
Presidential Resthouse. Located in Mabilao, San Fabian. The resthoouse of native architecture and predominantly made of native materials is open to the public. It offers accommodation, conference and dining facilities.
Virgen Milagrosa University Foundation. Situated in San Carlos City and developed as a community in itself, it is equipped with modern facilities.
Pista´y Dayat. A seaside festival in Pangasinan every May 1st. Pangasinenses and visitors alike take to the beaches to frolic and swim. Started to be a Labor Day Celebration by the Americans, this activity developed into a Fishermen´s Thanksgiving day for a bountiful harvest and prayers for a better sea harvest for the following year.
Feast Of Nuestra Señora de Manaoag. The date is movable, but it is usually the third wednesday after Easter.
How to get there.
Dagupan City is the transportation hub of Pangasinan, 170 kms. from Manila and about 59 kms. southeast of Baguio City. The city is accessible by buses which leave every 15 minutes from 4 a. m. to 7 p.m. or even 10 p.m. There are several bus lines offering airconditioned coaches. The major road networks that crisscross the province are the Manila North Road via Mac Arthur Highway and the North Expressway. Bugallon-Olongapo Road via Romulo Highway and the on-going construction of Rosales-Tayug-Umingan-Sta. Fe Road.
Pantranco North buses depart from Manila to Dagupan and from Quezon City to Alaminos (Hundred Islands) and Bolinao. The bus company also plies the Baguio-Dagupan route. The Dagupan Bus Co. operates between Cubao-Dagupan and Baguio-Dagupan. Other bus companies providing transport to the province are: Victory Liner, Five Star, City Trans, Philippine Rabbit, Philippine Rapid and MMTV. The roads from Baguio, San Fernando and Vigan skirt the beaches of San Fabian. MInibuses, jeepneys, and tricycles provide intertown travel. Boats can be hired for island-hopping and special interest activities.