Loay, Bohol

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Harbour and mouth of the Loboc River
Harbour and mouth of the Loboc River
Ph locator bohol loay.png
Loay is located in Philippines
Location within the Philippines
Coordinates: 9°36′N 124°01′E / 9.600°N 124.017°E / 9.600; 124.017Coordinates: 9°36′N 124°01′E / 9.600°N 124.017°E / 9.600; 124.017
Country Philippines
Region Central Visayas (Region VII)
Province Bohol
District 3rd district of Bohol
Established 1740
Barangay 24 (see § Barangays)
 • Mayor Rosemarie L. Imboy
 • Total 46.85 km2 (18.09 sq mi)
Population (2010)[2]
 • Total 16,261
 • Density 350/km2 (900/sq mi)
Time zone PST (UTC+8)
ZIP code 6303
IDD:area code +63 (0)38
Income class 5th class
Website www.loay-bohol.lgu.ph

Loay is a fifth class municipality in the province of Bohol, Philippines, located at the mouth of the Loboc River. According to the 2010 census it has a population of 16,261.[2]

The town can be divided into a lower and an upper part. The lower part used to be called Canipa-an because of the presence of nipa swamps in this part of the town, while the upper part is named Ibabao, being located on a plateau.[1]

Recent historical research found that instead of being in Bool, Tagbilaran, the actual site of the Blood Compact between Legazpi and Sikatuna may be in brgy Hinawanan.[3] Loay is also known for the many antiques discovered in its soils, thus indicating a civilization before the Spanish came to Bohol: it has become an haven for the treasure hunters.


Loay is politically subdivided into 24 barangays.

  • Agape
  • Alegria Norte
  • Alegria Sur
  • Bonbon
  • Botoc Occidental
  • Botoc Oriental
  • Calvario
  • Concepcion
  • Hinawanan
  • Las Salinas Norte
  • Las Salinas Sur
  • Palo
  • Poblacion Ibabao
  • Poblacion Ubos
  • Sagnap
  • Tambangan
  • Tangcasan Norte
  • Tangcasan Sur
  • Tayong Occidental
  • Tayong Oriental
  • Tocdog Dacu
  • Tocdog Ilaya
  • Villalimpia
  • Yanangan


During the period 1751-1754, Loay was a small village called Santissima Trinidad located at the strip of the Loboc River, as mentioned in the accounts of Father Juan Delgado.[4]

As a visita, it formerly belonged to the Municipality of Loboc. It was separated from the Loboc mission in 1795, although some state 1815 as the foundation date and Redondo (1886) reflects that it became an independent parish in 1799.[citation needed]


Population census of Loay
Year Pop. ±% p.a.
1990 12,677 —    
1995 12,450 −0.34%
2000 14,433 +3.22%
2007 15,881 +1.33%
2010 16,261 +0.86%
Source: National Statistics Office[2][5]


Loay has witnessed a series of political transformation over the centuries. Just like any other old towns in the Philippines, Loay was once ruled by a few datus before the arrival of the Spanish colonizers.

During the Spanish colonial period, these kings then became Cabezas de Barangay when the many independent barangays became tributary vassals of the Spanish crown. Upon the decree of Philip II of Spain, after whom the Philippines were named, they retained the honors and privileges they had before their conversion and subjection to the Spanish crown. With the new form of government introduced by Spain, several existing neighboring barangays were combined to form a municipality and the Cabezas de Barangay participated in the governance of the new towns, forming part of the elite ruling class called the Principalia. From among their ranks the head of the town, the Gobernadorcillo or Capitan Municipal, was elected. They held the title "Don" or "Doña". Furthermore, only the members of their class could elect the Gobernadorcillo. The office of the Cabeza de Barangay was hereditary. The cabezas, their wives, and first-born sons were exempt from the payment of tribute to the Spanish Crown.

The Gobernadorcillo, on the other hand, was a municipal judge or governor. In Loay, as a coastal town, the Gobernadorcillo also functioned as a Port Captain. This "mayor" who was at the same time "Justice of the Peace", and "port captain", was directly responsible to the Governor of the province of Bohol.

In 1893, the passing of the Maura Law reorganized certain structures of town governments. Among them was the changing of the town head designation from Gobernadorcillo to Capitan Municipal, effective 1895.

When the Americans took over the rule of the Philippines, there was again a change of governance. The municipal council was chosen by a limited electorate. The former Cabezas de Barangay and the rest of the members of the Principalia and their descendants lost their royal privileges and powers. However, they remained as very influential elements in the political and economic life of a new democratic society. Another particular change is the title of the Mayor from Capitan Municipal to Municipal President.


Loay is one of the locations for taking a Loboc river lunch cruise.

The church and belfry of Loay were severely damaged by the 2013 earthquake.


  1. ^ a b c "Municipality of Loay". Province of Bohol. Retrieved 2012-09-19. 
  2. ^ a b c "Population and Annual Growth Rates by Province, City, and Municipality - Region VII - Central Visayas: 1990, 2000, and 2010". National Statistics Office. 
  3. ^ Resolution No. 04, Series of 2005. National Historical Institute. July 1, 2005
  4. ^ DELGADO SJ, Fr Juan José (1892). Historia sacro-profana, política y natural de las Islas del Poniente, llamadas Filipinas (in Spanish). Manila: Imprenta de "Eco de Filipinas" de D. Juan Atayde. OCLC 351181. 
  5. ^ National Statistics Office - Population and Annual Growth Rates by Province, City and Municipality: Central Visayas: 1995, 2000 and 2007[dead link]

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