Bocaue, Bulacan

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Municipality of Bocaue
Bayan ng Bokawe
Bocaue Municipal Hall
Bocaue Municipal Hall
Official seal of Municipality of Bocaue
Nickname(s): Fireworks Capital of the Philippines
Map of Bulacan showing the location of Bocaue
Map of Bulacan showing the location of Bocaue
Municipality of Bocaue is located in Philippines
Municipality of Bocaue
Municipality of Bocaue
Location within the Philippines
Coordinates: 14°48′N 120°56′E / 14.800°N 120.933°E / 14.800; 120.933Coordinates: 14°48′N 120°56′E / 14.800°N 120.933°E / 14.800; 120.933
Country  Philippines
Region Central Luzon (Region III)
Province Bulacan
District 2nd District
Founded 1582
(as a barrio of Meycauayan)
Incorporated April 11, 1606
(as an independent town)
Barangays 19
 • Mayor Eduardo "Jon-Jon" Villanueva, Jr.
 • Total 31.87 km2 (12.31 sq mi)
Population (2010)[3]
 • Total 106,407
 • Density 3,300/km2 (8,600/sq mi)
Time zone PST (UTC+8)
ZIP code 3018
Dialing code 44
Income class 1st class, urban municipality

Bocaue (Filipino: Bukawe, Tagalog pronunciation: [boˈkawe]) is a first class urban municipality in the province of Bulacan, Philippines.

According to the 2010 census, it has a population of 106,407 people.[3] With the continuous expansion of Metro Manila, the town is now part of the metropolis' built-up area, which reaches San Ildefonso at Bulacan province's northernmost part and continues into Nueva Ecija.

There are three road crossings in town that are heavily congested during the rush hours: Lolomboy, Wakas and Bocaue road crossings. The Bocaue River runs through most of the town, and the Bocaue Museum is located near the center. The Bocaue River Festival is celebrated on the first Sunday of every July.


The municipality of Bocaue lies 24.5 kilometres (15.2 mi) northeast of Manila via the Gen. Arthur MacArthur, Jr. Highway and is located at the mid-southwestern portion of Bulacan. The town is bounded on the north by the municipalities of Balagtas and a portion of the municipality of Santa Maria; by the municipalities of Marilao and Obando on the south; a larger portion of Santa Maria on the east; a portion of the municipality of Bulakan on the extreme southwestern side; and a portion of Balagtas on the western side.

Bocaue is traversed by the Bocaue River, a tributary of the Santa Maria River from the Angat River. The main source of Angat River and its tributaries is the Sierra Madre mountain range. Along these rivers are many man-made fish ponds used for raising and farming fish like the bangus and tilapia.


Bocaue is politically subdivided into 19 barangays.

  • Antipona
  • Bagumbayan
  • Bambang
  • Batia
  • Biñang 1st
  • Biñang 2nd
  • Bolacan
  • Bunducan
  • Bunlo
  • Caingin
  • Duhat
  • Igulot
  • Lolomboy
  • Poblacion
  • Sulucan
  • Taal
  • Tambobong
  • Turo
  • Wakas


Etymology The town's name comes from the old Tagalog word "Bokawe" (Schyzostachyum lima) which refers to a type of long bamboo.

Bocaue was first establish by Franciscan missionaries from Meycauayan as its barrio and visita in 1582 and the town was officially established in April 11, 1606 under the advocacy of San Martin de Tours. It is the first town granted independency from the Old Meycauayan,then a very large town comprising the present Meycauayan,Marilao,Sta Maria,San Jose del Monte,Obando,Valenzuela.

After the Philippine–American War the Philippine Commission was established and the Americans reorganized the Philippine Municipalities and Provinces.In Bulacan Province was reduced its town from 26 to 19 towns that was in 1903,the town of Balagtas was annexed to Bocaue which regain its independency and reestablished as a town in 1911.

During the river festival of July 2, 1993, tragedy struck when around 500 people rode the floating pagoda of the miraculous Holy Cross of Wawa way beyond its capacity, causing it to sink, killing more than two hundred people. Despite the lives lost, no one has been made accountable for the tragedy. This incident became known as the Bocaue Pagoda Tragedy.

On the morning of 31 December 2007, ten fireworks stores burned in Barangay Turo, Bocaue, causing a series explosions within the area, injuring 7 persons.


Population census of Bocaue
Year Pop. ±% p.a.
1990 67,243 —    
1995 69,718 +0.68%
2000 86,994 +4.86%
2007 105,817 +2.74%
2010 106,407 +0.20%
Source: National Statistics Office[3]


Bocaue is about 27 kilometers north of Manila via the North Luzon Expressway and the Bocaue Exit (in Barangay Turo). The town is the center route for this highway that provides fast transport to Metro Manila. Its major industry is fireworks, making it the "Fireworks Capital of the Philippines".

Culture and Arts[edit]

A small art gallery beside the town's McDonald's restaurant called Twenty-Twenty (owned by the town's ophthalmologist and her art photographer husband) sells works by a number of Bulacan painters. Nationally-known Bocaueños in the arts include choreographer Francisca Reyes Aquino and TV actress Jewel Mische. Lauro Delgado, a former veteran character actor of Premiere Productions from the early 1950s up to the late 1970s, is also a Bocaue native born in Bunducan.

Bocaue is also famous for its Bocaue liempo, crispy pata, rellenong bangus (stuffed milkfish) and various sorts of rice cakes, embroidered barong Tagalog and Filipiniana outfits.

The Francisca Reyes Aquino Shrine, under the management of the Philippines' National Historical Institute, is a shrine erected in honor of Francisca Reyes Aquino. Aquino was a recipient of a National Artist Award for her significant contributions to the development of Philippine arts and to the cultural heritage of the country, particularly in the field of native dance. The shrine was erected on the compound of Lolomboy Elementary School in Lolomboy, Bocaue, Bulacan.


Saint Martin of Tours Parish Church of Bocaue

The St. Martin of Tours Church of Bocaue, otherwise known as the Diocesan shrine, is one of the oldest churches in the province of Bulacan. The reputed Mahal na Krus ng Wawa (Beloved Holy Cross of Wawa) is kept here.

The Feast of the Holy Cross of Wawa is a festival held on the first Sunday of July, observed in honor of the Holy Cross of Wawa (Mahal na Krus sa Wawa), a relic which is said to have saved the life of an old woman drowning in the Bocaue River. The main feature of this fiesta is what is called the Pagoda, a gaily-decorated structure riding on a huge bangka, which glides along the said river. People from all walks of life enjoy the ride on the bangka with the Pagoda, feasting on sumptuous food while religious music is played.

Other religious groups include the Members Church of God International, Iglesia ni Cristo, and Jehovah's Witness, Methodists, Aglipayans, Adventists, Baptists, Mormons. There also some Evangelical, Pentecostal, Charismatic churches, ministries, fellowships and religious groups. Islam (Muslims) could also be found.


The Philippine Arena is a multi-purpose indoor arena at Ciudad de Victoria, a 75-hectare tourism enterprise zone in the town. With a capacity of up to 55,000, it became the largest domed indoor arena in the world upon its completion. It was the centerpiece of the Iglesia Ni Cristo's (INC) centennial which was celebrated on July 27, 2014.

Pro basketball player Billy Mamaril and Jonas Villanueva also came from Bocaue.


Bocaue is also the education center for the Marilao, Sta. Maria, Balagtas municipalities area. Secondary and higher education is accommodated by the following educational institutes.

  • Bulacan Polytechnic College (Bocaue campus)
  • Corinthian School
  • Dr. Yanga's Colleges, Inc.
  • Integrated School of Montessori
  • Jesus Is Lord College Foundation (main campus)
  • Mother of Divine Assistance College
  • New Era University (under construction until 2014)
  • St. Paul University Quezon City (Bocaue campus)
  • St. Paul College of Bocaue
  • Sto. Niño Academy
  • Children of Mary School of Bocaue
  • Academia de Santa Cruz

Municipal Government[edit]



  1. ^ "Official City/Municipal 2013 Election Results". Intramuros, Manila, Philippines: Commission on Elections (COMELEC). 11 September 2013. Retrieved 10 October 2013. 
  2. ^ "Province: BULACAN". PSGC Interactive. Makati City, Philippines: National Statistical Coordination Board. Retrieved 10 October 2013. 
  3. ^ a b c "Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay: as of May 1, 2010" (PDF). 2010 Census of Population and Housing. National Statistics Office. Retrieved 10 October 2013. 

External links[edit]