Central Visayas

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Central Visayas
Region VII
Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral
Chocolate Hills in Bohol Salagdoong Beach in Siquijor
Location in the Philippines
Location in the Philippines
Coordinates: 10°00′N 123°30′E / 10°N 123.5°E / 10; 123.5Coordinates: 10°00′N 123°30′E / 10°N 123.5°E / 10; 123.5
Country Philippines
Island group Visayas
Regional center Cebu City
 • Total 10,500.44 km2 (4,054.24 sq mi)
Population (2015 census)[1]
 • Total 6,041,903
 • Density 580/km2 (1,500/sq mi)
Time zone PST (UTC+8)
ISO 3166 code PH-07
Municipalities 97
Barangays 2,446
Cong. districts 14

Central Visayas (Cebuano: Tunga-tungang Kabisay-an; Filipino: Gitnang Kabisayaan) is a region of the Philippines, designated as Region VII. It is located in the central part of the Visayas island group, and consists of three island provinces: Cebu, Bohol and Siquijor; and three highly urbanized cities: Cebu City, Lapu-Lapu, and Mandaue. Cebu City is the regional center. The region is dominated by the native speakers of Cebuano. The land area of the region is 10,500.44 km2 (4,054.24 sq mi), and with a population of 6,041,903 inhabitants, it is the most populous region in the Visayas.

On May 29, 2015, the region was redefined, when Region VII lost the province of Negros Oriental to the newly formed Negros Island Region.


Regions first came into existence on September 24 of 1972, when the provinces of the Philippines were organized into 11 regions by Presidential Decree No. 1 as part of the Integrated Reorganization Plan by President Ferdinand Marcos. The provinces of Cebu, Bohol and Negros Oriental (including its then-subprovince of Siquijor) were grouped together to form the Central Visayas region.

By virtue of Executive Order No. 183 issued on May 29 of 2015, by President Benigno Aquino III, the province of Negros Oriental was removed from Central Visayas to form the Negros Island Region along with Negros Occidental and its provincial capital, Bacolod City.[2]


Population census of Central Visayas
Year Pop. ±% p.a.
1990 3,668,852 —    
2000 4,576,865 +2.24%
2010 5,513,514 +1.88%
2015 6,041,903 +1.76%
Data excludes Negros Oriental that was part of Central Visayas until 2015.
Source: National Statistics Office[1][3][4][5]

In the 2013 electoral roll, it had 4,114,046 registered voters, meaning that 68% of the population are aged 18 and over.[6]

According to the 2015 census, it had a population of 6,041,903. The population density was 580/km2 (1,500/sq mi). The 2015 census showed an average annual population growth rate of 1.76% from 2010 to 2015, slightly higher than the national average of 1.72%.[1]

Cebuano is the dominant language of the region. A local variant of this language called Boholano is spoken in Bohol. Cebuano is still also spoken in the Camotes Islands, especially in the towns of Tudela, Pilar and San Francisco, with the exception of Poro, where a mixture of Cebuano, Hiligaynon (Ilonggo) and Masbateño is spoken, a Visayan language called Porohanon. Bantayanon, another Visayan language closely related to Hiligaynon, Capiznon and Masbateño, is spoken in the Bantayan Islands northwest of Cebu.

Administrative divisions[edit]

The Central Visayas region consists of 3 provinces and 3 independent cities:

Political map of Central Visayas
Province or HUC Capital Population (2015)[1] Area[7] Density Cities Muni. Brgy.
km2 sq mi /km2 /sq mi
Bohol Tagbilaran 21.7% 1,313,560 4,820.95 1,861.38 270 700 1 47 1,109
Cebu Cebu City 48.6% 2,938,982 4,943.72 1,908.78 590 1,500 6 44 1,066
Siquijor Siquijor 1.6% 95,984 337.49 130.31 280 730 0 6 134
Cebu City 15.3% 922,611 315.00 121.62 2,900 7,500 80
Lapu-Lapu 6.8% 408,112 58.10 22.43 7,000 18,000 30
Mandaue 6.0% 362,654 25.18 9.72 14,400 37,000 27
Total 6,041,903 10,500.44 4,953.29 580 1,500 10 97 2,446

 †  Cebu City, Mandaue and Lapu-Lapu are highly urbanized cities, figures are excluded from Cebu province.


Cebu City is the main media hub for both the region. Large media networks – ABS-CBN, GMA Network, TV5, People's Television Network and CNN Philippines – maintain their respective local stations and branches for viewership, commercial and news coverage purposes. Most of these stations broadcast local news and public affairs as well as entertainment and dramas to cater the local viewers.

Aside from the 24 national daily newspapers available, Cebu City also has 20 local newspapers. Among the widely read are the Sun Star Cebu. The country's main Islamic news journal, The Voice of Islam, was founded in 1961 and published in this city.



Fastcraft terminal for ferrying passengers from Cebu to Negros.

The Port of Cebu is the region's main gateway. There are also ports in Tagbilaran in Bohol and Larena in Siquijor. Inter-island shipping is served by numerous shipping lines, two of them fastcraft companies which serve all the provinces in the region.


The Mactan-Cebu International Airport, located in Lapu-Lapu City, is the country's second busiest airport (after Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Metro Manila) and the only airport in the Visayas serving international flights (aside from Kalibo International Airport). It is the primary airline hub of Cebu Pacific, and secondary hub for Philippine Airlines and its subsidiaries, with flights to locations throughout the country. It also serves international flights to other Asian and intercontinental destinations.[8]

Other airports in the region are Tagbilaran Airport, serves Tagbilaran and Bohol with flights to Manila.


  1. ^ a b c d e Census of Population (2015). "Region VII (Central Visayas)". Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay. PSA. Retrieved 20 June 2016. 
  2. ^ "Executive Order No. 183, s. 2015". Official Gazette (Philippines). May 29, 2015. Retrieved June 5, 2015. 
  3. ^ Census of Population and Housing (2010). Population and Annual Growth Rates for The Philippines and Its Regions, Provinces, and Highly Urbanized Cities (PDF). NSO. Retrieved 29 June 2016. 
  4. ^ Census of Population and Housing (2010). "Region VII (Central Visayas)". Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay. NSO. Retrieved 29 June 2016. 
  5. ^ Census of Population (1995, 2000 and 2007). "Region VII (Central Visayas)". Total Population by Province, City and Municipality. NSO. Archived from the original on 24 June 2011. 
  6. ^ "2016 National and Local Elections Statistics". Commission on Elections. 2016. 
  7. ^ "PSGC Interactive; List of Provinces". Philippine Statistics Authority. Archived from the original on 21 January 2013. Retrieved 4 April 2016. 
  8. ^ "Mactan Cebu International Airport - Cebu Pacific - Philippines". Mactan-cebuairport.com.ph. Retrieved 2013-04-22. 

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