Timothy Tye's Travel Encyclopedia
Negros, Philippines

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Mambukal Falls, NegrosMambukal Falls, Negros
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Negros is the third largest island in the Philippines. It covers 13,328 sq km (5,146 sq mi) and has a population of 4 million people (2011 estimate). The island comprises two provinces: Negros Oriental and Negros Occidental, separated by linguistic differences as well as the division of the island by a central mountain range. From Negros, Panay is to the northwest, Cebu Island is to the east and Mindanao to the south.

Negros is noted for being a major sugarcane producer of the Philippines. The city of Victorias on the northern part of the island has the biggest integrated sugar mill in the world.

The highest mountain in Negros is the 2,435 m (7,989 ft) Kanlaon Volcano, one of the most active volcanoes in the world. Straddling the two provinces, Kanlaon is the centerpiece of the Mount Kanlaon National Park.

Fishermen off Negros, in the backgroundFishermen off Negros, in the background
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Evidence of human habitation in Negros goes back to the Ice age. The Spanish arrived here in April 1565. The towns of Binalbagan and Ilog were originally native settlements which were turned into proper villages in 1573 and 1584. Ilog served as the first capital of Negros in 1734, but the seat of government was eventually relocated to Bacolod in 1849.

Negros was subdivided in Negros Occidental and Negros Oriental in 1890. The island came under American administration from 1901 until the independence of the Philippines.

View of Mount Kanlaon volcano from the rice fields in Negros OccidentalView of Mount Kanlaon volcano from the rice fields in Negros Occidental
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Main cities in Negros

  1. Amlan
    Small city in Negros Oriental, on the southeastern part of the island.
  2. Bacolod
    Capital of Negros Occidental and biggest city in the Western Visayas Region, famous for its MassKara Festival.
  3. Cadiz City
    Center for agro-fishery on the island, located in Negros Occidental.
  4. Dumaguete
    Capital of Negros Oriental.
  5. Murcia
    City in Negros Occidental with a number of mountain resorts.
  6. Siaton
    Small city in Negros Oriental, on the southernmost part of Negros island.
  7. Silay
    One of the two "museum cities" of the Philippines along with Vigan, Silay has well-preserved houses of Spanish and American colonial architecture.
  8. Victorias
    City on the northern coast of Negros with the world's largest sugar mill.

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