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Laguna is a province of the Philippines found in the CALABARZON region in Luzon. Its capital is Santa Cruz. Laguna is located southeast of Metro Manila, south of the province of Rizal, west of Quezon, north of Batangas, and east of Cavite. Laguna almost completely surrounds Laguna de Bay, the largest lake in the country. The province got its name from the Spanish word lago, which means "lake."

Province of Laguna
Ph seal laguna.png
Ph locator map laguna.png
Region CALABARZON (Region IV-A)
Governor Teresita S. Lazaro {Lakas–CMD}
Barangays 674
Physical characteristics
Area 1,759.7 km²
(17th smallest)
Total (2000) 1,965,872
(6th largest)
Density 1,117/km²
(3rd highest)

Laguna is notable for being the birthplace of José Rizal, the country's national hero. Laguna is also famous among tourists for Pagsanjan Falls, Pila Town Plaza, Taytay Falls, Majayjay, the wood carvings and papier mache created by the people of Paete, the turumba of Pakil, the hot spring resorts in Los Baños on the slopes of Mount Makiling, and Hidden Valley Springs in Calauan.


People and Culture


  • Natural Resources:
Laguna is endowed with abundant natural resources. Its forests are filled with bamboo, rattan, and soft hardwood trees. Its wide fields are ideal for growing rice, coconuts, vegetables, tropical fruits, orchids, and other ornamental flowers and exotic plants. The province is also rich in mineral resources such as clay, jasper, and basalt glass.
There are about 40 rivers in Laguna with a total area of almost 0.5 km². In the forests of Mount Makiling and in the waters of Laguna de Bay are an abundance of flora and fauna. Laguna de Bay has an approximate area of 3800 km², broken down into 2900 km² of land and 900 km² of lake proper with a 220-km shoreline.
Laguna's greatest natural resource is water. It has an estimated 300 million US gallons (1,100,000 m³) of underground water, capable of generating energy for Laguna's expanding power needs. At least 7 principal water basins in the province with a total of 5,773 km² drainage area and 1,316 km² level area provide an estimated 9.238 km³ total run-off annually.
  • Agricultural Activities:
Crop production, livestock and poultry production,Fishing
  • Investment Opportunities:
Ecotourism enterprises; fishing; convention centers; coconut inter-cropping; forest trees; cut flowers and ornamentals; fruit and vegetable processing; herbal medicines and essences; gifts and housewares; metalcraft (industrial equipment, engines, surgical instruments, agricultural machinery, tools); service facilities (packaging, warehousing, trucking services, dryers); electronics (consumer electronics, telecommunications, computers and peripherals, semi-conductors); garments and footwear;
  • Financial Institutions:
Several banking institutions maintain extensives network in Laguna. Commercial banks, savings and mortgage banks, private development banks, stock savings and loan associations, and rural banks operate a total of 267 branches in the province.
Non-bank financial institutions provide supplementary financial services to Laguna residents and businesses. A total of 394 offices have been set up by lending investors, pawnshops, financial companies, nonstock savings and loan associations, and investment houses with quasi-banking functions.
  • Exports:
US$7.0 billion (1997) out of total Philippine exports of $25 billion
US$1.5 billion (1996)



Laguna is subdivided into 25 municipalities and 6 cities.




Laguna lies on the southern shores of Laguna de Bay, the largest lake in the country. On the southern border of the province are Mt. Makiling (Maquiling) and Mt. Banahaw, which are both long dormant volcanoes but which are still sources of geothermal energy. Mt. Makiling is popular for the numerous hot spring resorts that are found on its slopes. Pagsanjan Falls is a popular waterfall that tumbles down a deep gorge in the hills.

The eastern portion of Laguna straddles the southernmost portions of the Sierra Madre mountain range.


The province is relatively dry from November to April and wet during the rest of the year for a small portion near the southern boundary. The other parts, west of Santa Cruz , experience a dry season from November to April and rainy season during the rest of the year. The eastern and southernmost portions do not experience distinct seasons, with rainfall more evenly distributed throughout the year.

Tourist Attractions and Landmarks


  • Rizal Shrine, Calamba City - The Rizal Shrine is located in Calamba City and features the home of José Rizal.
  • Homma–Yamashita Shrine, Los Baños
  • Japanese Garden, Caliraya, Cavinti
  • Underground Cemetery, Nagcarlan
  • The Battle of Mabitac Mural, Mabitac
  • University of the Philippines at Los Banos (UPLB) Baker Hall
  • The Philippines' oldest crematorium in Pinagbayanan, Pila, Laguna



  • Pagsanjan Falls, Cavinti - These falls used to be called the Magdapio Falls but have become popularly known as the Pagsanjan Falls because the trip starts in Pagsanjan. The falls are actually located upstream in Cavinti and not in Pagsanjan as many think. The boat ride goes through many rapids before reaching the falls.
  • Mount Makiling, Los Baños
  • Hidden Valley Springs
  • Crocodile Lake, Los Baños
  • Seven Lakes, San Pablo City
  • Dalatiwan River, Botocan, Majayjay
  • Buruwisan Falls, Siniloan


  • Diocesan Shrine of St. Anthony of Padua, Pila, Laguna
  • Pila Museum, Pila, Laguna
  • Boy Scouts of the Philippines Camp, UP Los Baños
  • Hot spring resorts in Los Baños and Calamba City
  • Paete’s Woodcarving, Paete
  • Religious: St. Gregory Church (Majayjay Catholic Church)
  • St. James The Apostle Church (Paete Church)
  • San Pedro De Alcantara Church (Pakil Church)
  • Our Lady of Candelaria (Mabitac Church)


  • Brent International School Manila, Southwoods, Biñan
  • Canossa Academy, Calamba City
  • Canossa College, San Pablo City
  • Caritas Don Bosco School, Biñan
  • Colegio de San Juan de Letran, Calamba City
  • Colegio San Agustin Manila Southwoods, Biñan
  • Dalubhasaan ng Lungsod ng San Pablo (DLSP), San Pablo City
  • De La Salle University, Canlubang
  • Don Bosco, Canlubang
  • International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) Riceworld Museum, Los Baños
  • Laguna College, San Pablo City
  • Laguna State Polytechnic University campuses in Sta. Cruz (formerly Laguna School of Arts and Trades), San Pablo City, Los Baños and Cabuyao, Siniloan (the province's state university)
  • Laguna University, Santa Cruz
  • Little People's School, Bay
  • Malayan Colleges Laguna, Cabuyao
  • Marcelino Fule Memorial College, Alaminos
  • Montesorri Professional College, San Pablo City
  • Pamantasan ng Cabuyao, Cabuyao
  • Pedro Guevarra Memorial National High School (Formerly Laguna High School and Pedro Guevarra Memorial High School)
  • Philippine High School for the Arts, Los Baños
  • Saint Vincent College of Cabuyao, Mamatid, Cabuyao
  • San Pablo Colleges, San Pablo City
  • Trace Computer College (Los Baños Campus), Los Baños
  • University of Perpetual Help System, Biñan, Laguna
  • University of the Philippines at Los Baños (UPLB), Los Baños
  • UPLB Makiling Rainforest Park / Mt. Makiling Forest Reserve, Los Baños
  • UPLB Botanical Garden, Los Baños
  • UPLB Entomology Museum, Los Baños
  • UPLB Museum of Natural History, Los Baños
  • UPLB Museum of the Wildlife Collections Of Dr. Dioscoro Rabor, Los Baños
  • University of the Philippines Rural High School, Los Baños


  • SM City Santa Rosa, Santa Rosa City
  • Splash Island, Biñan
  • Enchanted Kingdom, Santa Rosa City
  • Liana's Discount City, Calamba City
  • SM City Calamba (under construction), Calamba City
  • Monte Vista Resort and Hotel, Calamba City
  • Waltermart, Calamba City
  • Paseo de Santa Rosa, Santa Rosa City
  • Paseo de Cabuyao (under construction), Cabuyao
  • Robinsons' Town Mall Los Baños, Los Baños
  • Olivarez Plaza, Los Baños
  • Vega Centre and Arcade, Los Baños
  • Los Baños Square, Los Baños
  • San Pablo Shopping Centre, San Pablo City
  • SM Super Center San Pablo (under construction), San Pablo City
  • Star Mall, Santa Cruz
  • Ultimart Shopping Plaza, City of San Pablo
  • Centro Park Depatment Store and Supermarket, City of San Pablo & Santa Cruz
  • Tierra de Oro Resort and Hotel, San Pablo City


The province of Laguna was named after Laguna de Bay, the body of water that forms its northern boundary. Laguna de Bay, in turn, was named after the town of Bay (Laguna de Bay in Spanish means "lake of Bay"), the first provincial capital. Captain Juan de Salcedo with a band of 100 Spanish-Mexican soldiers and many Visayan allies conquered the province and its surrounding regions for Spain in 1571. Seven years later, two Franciscan friars started the work of Christianization.

In 1577, the Franciscan missionaries arrived in Manila, and in 1578 they started evangelizing Laguna, Rizal, Tayabas (now Quezon) and the Bicol Peninsula. Fathers Juan de Placencia and Diego de Orepesa were the earliest Franciscans sent to these places. From 1580 and onward, the towns of Bay, Caliraya, Majayjay, Nagcarlan, Liliw, Pila, Santa Cruz, Lumban, Pangil, and Siniloan were founded. In 1678, Fray Hernando Cabrera founded San Pablo de los Montes (now San Pablo City) and built a wooden church and convent considered as the best and finest in the province.

In 1670, delimitation of borders were made between Lucban, Majayjay, and Cavite. The populous town at that time was Bay, the capital of the province until 1688, when the seat of the provincial government was moved to Pagsanjan, and later, in 1858, to Santa Cruz. In 1754, the Tayabas was made a separate province from Laguna , with the Malinao River separating the towns of Majayjay and Lucban.

The province became a bloody battle ground for the Chinese during the two instances that they rose in revolt against Spain. In 1603, the Chinese made their last stand in the mountains of San Pablo, and in 1639, they fortified themselves in the highlands of Cavinti and Lumban, surrendering in Pagsanjan a year later.

The loyalty of the people of Laguna to the crown was tested during the British invasion (1762-1764) when thousands of Filipinos rallied to its defense. When a detachment of British troops under Captain Thomas Backhouse entered the province in search of the silver cargo of the galleon Filipino, Francisco de San Juan of Pagsanjan led a band of volunteers that fought them in several engagements in and around the town which was then the provincial capital (1688-1858). Captain Backhouse plundered the town and burned its newly reconstructed church but San Juan succeeded in escaping with the precious hoard to Pampanga where the treasure greatly bolstered the defense effort of Simon Anda. For his heroism, San Juan was made a brigade commander and alcalde mayor of Tayabas (now Quezon) province.

If Filipino loyalty gradually degenerated into bitter hostility, it was the fault of the Spaniards themselves, including the clergy. They perpetrated such grave abuses that the resentment of the Filipinos was fanned into a rising flood of nationalism. In 1840 for instance, religious intolerance led the people of Majayjay, Nagcarlan, Bay, and Biñan to join the revolt of Hermano Pule (Apolinario de la Cruz) of Lucban, Tayabas.

Laguna was also exposed to the aspirations of its most famous son, Dr. Jose Rizal, who was born in Calamba. The persecution of Dr. Jose Rizal and his parents toward the end of the century further aggravated the situation, so that by 1896, thousands of patriotic inhabitants, especially of Bay, Los Baños, Nagcarlan, Magdalena, Santa Cruz, and Pagsanjan had joined the revolutionary Katipunan.

Laguna was one of the first sites of the Philippine Revolution. Led by Generals Paciano Rizal of Calamba, Severino Taino of Pagsanjan, Agueda Kahabagan of Calauan, and Miguel Malvar of Batangas, Laguna was one of the eight provinces to rise in revolt against the Spanish misrule. The ill-equipped Filipino forces fought the well-armed enemy until on August 31, 1898, when the last Spanish garrison surrendered to the victorious patriots in Santa Cruz. The province was cleared of Spaniards. There had been only one respite, the Pact of Biak-na-Bato on December 14 to 15, 1897.

Laguna actively supported the first Philippine Republic proclaimed at Malolos on January 23, 1899. Laguna's two delegates to the Malolos Congress, Don Higino Benitez and Don Graciano Cordero, were natives of Pagsanjan.

Upon the outbreak of the Filipino-American War (1899-1901), General Juan Cailles and General Paciano Rizal led the defense of Laguna until June 30, 1901, when surrender became inevitable. Cailles became the first Filipino governor of Laguna under the American flag.

The province of Laguna progressed rapidly in peace. Roads were built, schools were established, and in 1917, the Manila Railroad Company extended its line to Laguna as far as Pagsanjan.

During the Japanese occupation (1942-1945), Laguna was a center of resistance despite the presence of Makapili traitors.

Present-day Laguna has a thriving economy. Peopled by 1,734,618 (1997 estimated population) industrious citizens and possessing a total area of 1760 km² of land, Laguna produces millions of pesos worth of coconuts, rice, sugar, citrus fruits, lanzones and other products. Tourists flock to its beauty spots, especially Pagsanjan Falls, Los Baños Hot Springs, Makiling National Park, Caliraya Lake and many others. Levels of development vary. The towns near Metro Manila have become industrialized whereas the inner towns continue to engage in agricultural production or pursue agri-based industries and cottage and small-scale industries.

Government Members

Governor: Teresita "Ningning" S. Lazaro (Lakas-CMD) Vice-Governor: Ramil L. Hernandez (PMP)

[edit] House of Representatives 1st District: Dr. Danilo Ramon "Dan" S. Fernandez 2nd District: Justin Marc "Timmy" S.B. Chipeco 3rd District: Ma. Evita Roda Arago 4th District: Edgar S. San Luis

[edit] Board Members 1st District:

David "Dave" M. Almarinez Emilio "Emil" M. Tiongco Ramon "Monching" C. Carillo 2nd District:

Rolando "Rolly" S. Bagnes Juan M. Unico Neil Andrew "Neil" N. Nocon 3rd District:

Katherine C. Agapay Reynaldo D. Paras 4th District:

Benedicto Mario C. Palacol, Jr. Domingo G. Panganiban

See also

External links

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