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Poblacion, Botolan
Poblacion, Botolan
Official seal of Botolan
Map of Zambales showing the location of Botolan
Map of Zambales showing the location of Botolan
Botolan is located in Philippines
Location within the Philippines
Coordinates: 15°17′N 120°01′E / 15.28°N 120.02°E / 15.28; 120.02Coordinates: 15°17′N 120°01′E / 15.28°N 120.02°E / 15.28; 120.02
Country Philippines
Region Central Luzon (Region III)
Province Zambales
Legislative district 2nd district of Zambales
Founded 1572[1]
Barangays 31
 • Mayor Doris 'Bing' Maniquiz Jeresano
 • Total 735.28 km2 (283.89 sq mi)
Population (2015 census)[4]
 • Total 57,707
 • Density 78/km2 (200/sq mi)
Time zone PST (UTC+8)
ZIP code 2202
IDD:area code +63 (0)47
Income class 1st class

Botolan is a municipality in the province of Zambales in the Philippines. The town was founded by Spanish Governor-General Juan de Salcedo in 1572.[1] According to the 2015 census, it has a population of 57,707 people.[4]

Botolan has the largest land area of the municipalities in Zambales. 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.


Botolan is politically subdivided into 31 barangays.[5]

  • Bancal
  • Bangan
  • Batonlapoc
  • Belbel
  • Beneg
  • Binuclutan
  • Burgos
  • Cabatuan
  • Capayawan
  • Carael
  • Danacbunga
  • Maguisguis
  • Malomboy
  • Mambog
  • Moraza
  • Nacolcol
  • Owaog-Nibloc
  • Paco (poblacion)
  • Palis
  • Panan
  • Parel
  • Paudpod
  • Poonbato
  • Porac
  • San Isidro
  • San Juan
  • San Miguel
  • Santiago
  • Tampo (poblacion)
  • Taugtog
  • Villar


Population census of Botolan
Year Pop. ±% p.a.
1990 35,604 —    
1995 41,084 +2.72%
2000 46,602 +2.74%
2007 51,675 +1.44%
2010 54,434 +1.91%
2015 57,707 +1.12%
Source: Philippine Statistics Authority[4][6][7]

In the 2015 census, the population of Botolan was 57,707 people,[4] with a density of 78 inhabitants per square kilometre or 200 inhabitants per square mile.


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.

Ina Poon Bato[edit]

The Ina Poón Bató is a purportedly miraculous, syncretised image of the Blessed Virgin Mary.[8] Legend has it that before the arrival of the Spanish in the area sometime in the 17th century, local Aeta peoples had discovered a carved wooden statue on a large rock that they called Apo Apang ("Little Queen")[9] and began worshipping the image. On the arrival of Recollect missionaries in 1607, the natives associated the statue with the Roman Catholic depictions of the Virgin Mary, and the image was subsequently Christianised as Ina Poón Bato ("Mother of the Lord Rock").[8]

The image was canonically blessed by Pope John Paul II in 1985 at a ceremony in Vatican City.[10] After the 1991 eruption of Mount Pinatubo destroyed the original village, the image (which was found intact and buried chest-deep in lahar)[11] and its shrine were moved to the nearby resettlement area of Loob-Bunga.[12] The feast of Ina Poón Bató is celebrated every late January, with devotees flocking to the original image inside a chapel belonging to the Aglipayan Church, and the 1976 replica enshrined in the Catholic chapel.[11]


  1. ^ a b "Municipalities". Zambales Now, Official Website of Zambales. Retrieved on 2012-05-24.
  2. ^ "Official City/Municipal 2013 Election Results". Intramuros, Manila, Philippines: Commission on Elections (COMELEC). 12 May 2014. Retrieved 2 December 2014. 
  3. ^ "Province: Zambales". PSGC Interactive. Quezon City, Philippines: Philippine Statistics Authority. Retrieved 12 November 2016. 
  4. ^ a b c d "Region III (Central Luzon)". Census of Population (2015): Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay (Report). PSA. Retrieved 20 June 2016. 
  5. ^ "Philippine Standard Geographic Code listing for Botolan". National Statistical Coordination Board. Retrieved on 2007-12-09.
  6. ^ "Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay: as of May 1, 2010" (PDF). 2010 Census of Population and Housing. National Statistics Office. Archived from the original (PDF) on 15 November 2012. Retrieved 26 January 2014. 
  7. ^ "Province of Zambales". Municipality Population Data. LWUA Research Division. Retrieved 16 August 2013. 
  8. ^ a b "Our Lady of Poon Bato". Retrieved 21 August 2011. 
  9. ^ "The Aetas' 'Apo Apang'". The Mandanao Daily Mirror. 21 January 2010. Retrieved 21 August 2011. 
  10. ^ "The Story of Ina PoonBato". Ina Poon Bato "The Miraculous Blessed Mother". Retrieved 10 July 2015. 
  11. ^ a b Macatuno, Allan (24 March 2014). "Wooden Marian image draws devotees to Zambales". Philippine Daily Inquirer. Philippine Daily Inquirer. Retrieved 10 July 2015. 
  12. ^ "Ina Poonbato Shrine". Botolan Official Website. Retrieved 21 August 2011. 

External links[edit]