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About Ilocos Sur and its History


Ilocos Sur is located in the northwestern part of Luzon. This province prides itself with an old world charm that makes one feel like going back in time. It was once the hub of European and Asian trade. Vigan, Ilocos Sur’s capital, houses several old architectures which were built by the Spaniards. Rumors say that when the Imperial Japanese forces were hastily escaping from the Philippines, they buried their treasures in parts of Ilocos Sur, hence igniting massive treasure hunts in the area.

In the historical city of Vigan, horse-drawn carriages called calesa’s are still rampant. Visitors hopping onto one will find themselves taken around town by the local kutsero (calesa driver) who can also double as a tour guide.

Brief History

Even before it was discovered by Spanish explorers, Vigan’s economy was already thriving. It was the center of Malayan civilization which made a living out of trading with the Chinese and Japanese.

When Spanish explorer Don Juan de Salcedo arrived in the land of Ylocos, they made Bigan the center of Ylocos settlement. Their headquarters was located in Villa Fernandina, which is now known as the “Intramuros of Ilocandia”. Ilocos Sur and Ilocos Norte used to be one big province of Ilocos, until it was first split in 1818.

Ilocos Sur History (Wikipedia)

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