Botolan is the largest municipality in the province in terms of land area. Located just south of the provincial capital of Iba, Botolan is known for its larger Aeta population, wide gray sand beaches, and as the location of Mount Pinatubo.
The beach at Barangay Beneg, looking south towards the Bucao River
The beach at Barangay Beneg, looking north towards Iba
The barangay of Binoclutan is the "Beach Capital" of Botolan, featuring several first class resorts. The area is a habitat of sea turtles, as is all of the Zambales coastline. Olive Ridley, Green and Hawksbill turtles nest along the beaches of Botolan every year between September and January. A turtle hatchery located is located in Binoklutan. The area also has many other attractions, beach resorts, waterfalls, hiking paths, views of the lahar fields left by the 1991 eruption of Mount Pinatubo, and views of Mount Pinatubo itself.
The Fiesta Poon Bato, held January 23–24, is a religious festival that attracts up to 500,000 devotes. Features include cultural dancing from local Aeta tribes in the town plaza on the first night.
The Domorokdok Festival, held May 3–4, includes street parades, street dancing, a beauty pageant and displays of Botolan products and industries.
The festival Poon Bato stems from the homage to a religious artifact deemed to be able to perform miracles. Legend has it that before the arrival of the Spanish in the 17th Century, Aeta natives had discovered a carved wooden image on a large rock that they called "Apo Apang" (Little Queen) On the arrival of Recoletos missionaries in 1607, the natives made the association with the Roman Catholic image of the Virgin Mary and it was adopted by the Church and named "Ina Poon Bato" (Mother of Poon Bato). In 1991 the shrine was moved to the nearby resettlement area of Loob-Bunga after the eruption of Mount Pinatubo destroyed the original site.