Verdant mountain ranges, pristine beaches, clean springs and lakes, and abundant produce, the Province of Sorsogon in Luzon’s southernmost tip is a haven of biodiversity and adventure.
Its seas serve as feeding grounds of the butanding or the whale shark, the biggest fish in the world. These gentle giants congregate in the sea off the town of Donsol from October to May as they feed on the abundant planktons, krills, and juvenile fishes in the area.
Thousands of tourists from around the world come to Sorsogon to swim and interact with the butanding in a manner that doesn’t harm this marine resource.
Donsol is not only the butanding capital of the country, it also offers a river cruise along Ogod River that includes the magical experience of watching fireflies light up the riverside.
Sorsogon is also home to the Mt. Bulusan National Park, a pristine habitat of endemic flora and fauna. It encompasses a 5,077-feet volcano and a 3,672-hectare lake.
The park also covers a tropical forest, lakes, rivers, and natural springs.
Near Sorsogon’s boundary with Albay is a forest reserve that spans 25,100 hectares. Within the Bacon-Manito Geothermal Plant Eco-Park are more natural wonders: Botong Twin Falls, lakes, springs, and sheer rock faces.
The province has unspoiled beaches and offers short boat trips to picturesque islands, one of which has pink sand. Surfing is another fun activity in Gubat town’s Rizal Beach.
Sorsogon is replete with historic sites attesting to its checkered past. The 19th century Barcelona Church, which was built using corals and dark-colored stones, tops the list.
The first Christian settlement in Luzon, which was also the site of the first mass officiated by Augustinian priest Alonso Jimenez in 1569, is in Gibalong Village in Sorsogon.
In the town of Juban, there are a few Spanish-era ancestral houses that have defied time and the elements. They serve as the town’s living museums with their collection of antiquities.
Other places of note: Provincial Capitol Park with its old world charm, gazebo that used to host brass bands and orchestras, Pepita Park Rest Area and Rompeolas for a refreshing view of Sorsogon Bay.
Sorsogon City, the provincial capital, is the commercial and transport hub as well as religious and educational center. It hosts numerous hotels, restaurants, schools, resorts, and other tourism facilities.
Sorsogon used to be under the territorial jurisdiction of Albay until it was organized into a separate geographical unit on October 17, 1894.