Libon, Albay

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Map of Albay with Libon highlighted
Location within Albay province
Libon is located in Philippines
Location within the Philippines
Coordinates: 13°18′N 123°26′E / 13.3°N 123.43°E / 13.3; 123.43Coordinates: 13°18′N 123°26′E / 13.3°N 123.43°E / 13.3; 123.43
Country Philippines
Region Bicol (Region V)
Province Albay
District 3rd district
Founded 1573
Barangays 47 (see Barangays)
 • Type Sangguniang Bayan
 • Mayor Wilfredo "Das" Maronilla (NPC)
 • Vice Mayor Marc Gregor "Mac" Sayson (Liberal Party)
 • Total 222.76 km2 (86.01 sq mi)
Population (2015 census)[3]
 • Total 75,172
 • Density 340/km2 (870/sq mi)
 • Voter(2016)[4] 41,117
Demonym(s) Libongueño
Time zone PST (UTC+8)
ZIP code 4507
IDD:area code +63 (0)52
Income class 1st class
PSGC 050507000

Libon, officially the Municipality of Libon (Filipino: Bayan ng Libon), is a municipality in the province of Albay in the Caraga region of the Philippines. The population was 75,172 at the 2015 census.[3] In the 2016 election, it had 41,117 registered voters.[4]

Libon is a first class municipality with a land area of 222.76 square kilometres (86.01 sq mi). It is about 37 kilometres (23 mi) west-north-west of the provincial capital of Albay Legazpi City, and about 300 kilometres (190 mi) east-south-east of Manila. It is classified as a partly urban municipality with 47 barangays.

Libon’s major economic activities are agriculture and fishing. Its 4,000 hectares (9,900 acres) of ricelands produce 30.4 million kilos or 608,000 bags of palay per year.[citation needed] Libon is also the seat of the Pantao Port, a regional port facility linking the Masbate island province, the Visayas and Mindanao to mainland Bicol towards Southern Luzon and the National Capital Region.


The town of Libon, as it is presently known was originally called Libong. It is not known when and how the letter "g" got dropped. Some writers believe that the Spaniards must have found it difficult to pronounce the word "Libong" with the letter g, so that in due time Libong became Libon. There are conflicting and various versions regarding the origin of the name Libong. Some say that the word must have been derived from the Bicol term "libong" or "ribong", meaning puzzled, dizziness, losing one's sense of direction, or becoming oriented. Others believe that the word Libon must have originated from a Spanish term "libon", which means "assault". Another version is that the word is a corruption of the Bicol word "libtong", meaning difficulty, obstacle or pool of stagnant water, which when applied to a place could mean a difficult or stagnant place. The more popular and perhaps more plausible version is the claim that Libon originated from the Bicol term "libong" or "ribong", and there is a story which seems to support this view. The story goes that Captain Juan de Salcedo and his men arrived in this place, by sailing across Lake Bato and entering the river called, Quimba. Sailing upstream, they finally landed in a place called Linao; (Linao is one of the barrios of Libon today and is situated on the banks of Quimba River). Here Salcedo and his men proceeded to find a town. However, after exploring the surrounding area and noting that Linao was at the foot of a mountain range, making it vulnerable to enemy attacks from the surrounding mountains, Salcedo and his men, with some natives as their guide, decided to move on to a more suitable place. Traveling across marshy land, they arrived at a slightly elevated area. Upon looking around and trying to determine where they were, one native guide remarked "libong aco". (I am confused). The Spaniards on hearing the word "libong" understood it to mean the name of the place. Hence, Salcedo christened it "Santiago de Libon."


Libon traces its recorded history to the Second Expedition of Juan de Salcedo to the Bicol Region in 1573. Salcedo first reached the Bicol Region via the northern entrance in 1571, shortly after the capture of Manila by his uncle, Miguel Lopez de Legazpi. The latter had commissioned Salcedo to pacify the surrounding regions, including the native settlements around the Laguna de Bay area, when Salcedo learned from the natives that somewhere beyond the mountains of southern Luzon was a placed called Paracale with its fabulous gold mines. Wasting no time and with a force of forty men and some natives as guide, Salcedo proceeded toward the direction of the said gold mines, traveling along the Pacific Coast until they reached the Northern part of the Bicol Region and entered Paracale. Meanwhile, Legazpi wondering about the whereabouts of his nephew, dispatched a group headed by Sergeant Hurtado to locate the missing expedition. Hurtado found Salcedo in Paracale on December 28, 1571. Acting on order of Legazpi, Salcedo cut short his Bicol explorations and returned to Manila, out he bowed to return to Bicol as soon as possible.[awkward] In early 1573, Salcedo undertook his second trip to the Bicol Region retracing his first route and with the wealth of information that he gathered during his first arrival in the region, he led his men beyond Paracale. Sailing the Bicol River upstream, Salcedo and his men finally reached its source, Bato Lake. Then on the banks of this lake, "on suitable terrain", according to a Bicolano historian, Salcedo set up the foundations of a "Settlement for Spaniards and christened it Santiago de Libong." A report on Salcedo's second expedition to Bicol was sent to the King of Spain by Guido de Lavesarez, then Governor General of the Islands: Existing record on Salcedo's second trip to the Bicol Region point out that he left behind in the villa he founded, Santiago de Libong, as chief law officer, Captain Pedro de Chavez, and some eighty soldiers. It seems a little strange that no mention of the founding of Santiago de Libong was made by Governor Lavesarez in his report to the King of Spain. Fr. Sanchez, in an attempt to explain his puzzling omission wrote; Captain Chavez was, however, sent back to the Bicol Region in 1579 and in honor of Don Francisco de Sande, second proprietary governor of Manila, founded a city in Camarines and named it Nueva Caceres, in memory of Don Francisco de Sande's home city in Spain, Nueva Caceres in Camarines is now Naga City.

Saint James the Greater Parish[edit]

Santiago de Libong Patron Saint of Libon

In 1573, Juan de Salcedo set up the garrison named Santiago de Libong, and a church was constructed under the patronage of Saint James the Apostle. In 1578, when the Franciscans arrive, it was ceded to the province under San Gregorio Magno. A church made of red bricks was constructed in Linao in 1591. This church was destroyed in mid 17th century and a new church was constructed.

In 1847, the town was ceded to Albay from Camarines. Huerta reported that the new church was reconstructed by Vicente de Dosbarrios in 1865 and it was made of solid bricks, while the casa parroquial was made of stone. The church was destroyed by a strong earthquake in 1907 and it had to reconstructed with new materials.


Libon is located at 13°18'N, 123°26'E.

According to the Philippine Statistics Authority, the municipality has a land area of 222.76 square kilometres (86.01 sq mi)[2] constituting 8.65% of the 2,575.77-square-kilometre- (994.51 sq mi) total area of Albay.


Libon is politically subdivided into 47 barangays.[5]

  • Alongong
  • Apud
  • Bacolod
  • Bariw
  • Bonbon
  • Buga
  • Bulusan
  • Burabod
  • Caguscos
  • East Carisac
  • Harigue
  • Libtong
  • Linao
  • Mabayawas
  • Macabugos
  • Magallang
  • Malabiga
  • Marayag
  • Matara
  • Molosbolos
  • Natasan
  • Niño Jesus (Santo Niño Jesus)
  • Nogpo
  • Pantao
  • Rawis
  • Sagrada Familia
  • Salvacion
  • Sampongan
  • San Agustin
  • San Antonio
  • San Isidro
  • San Jose
  • San Pascual
  • San Ramon
  • San Vicente
  • Santa Cruz
  • Talin-talin
  • Tambo
  • Villa Petrona
  • West Carisac
  • Zone I (Poblacion)
  • Zone II (Poblacion)
  • Zone III (Poblacion)
  • Zone IV (Poblacion)
  • Zone V (Poblacion)
  • Zone VI (Poblacion)
  • Zone VII (Poblacion)

Paroy Festival[edit]

Dancers of Libon in Libon Paroy Festival 2016.

This festival was made to thank the industrious local farmers of Libon that planted rice into its 35% rice lands. It is celebrated every July 22–25.


Population census of Libon
Year Pop. ±% p.a.
1990 59,910 —    
1995 63,190 +1.07%
2000 66,213 +0.94%
Year Pop. ±% p.a.
2007 68,846 +0.56%
2010 71,527 +1.28%
2015 75,172 +1.00%
Source: PSA[3][6][7]

In the 2015 census, Libon had a population of 75,172.[3] The population density was 340 inhabitants per square kilometre (880/sq mi).

In the 2016 election, it had 41,117 registered voters.[4]


  1. ^ "Municipality". Quezon City, Philippines: Department of the Interior and Local Government. Retrieved 31 May 2013. 
  2. ^ a b "Province: Albay". PSGC Interactive. Makati City, Philippines: Philippine Statistics Authority. Retrieved 24 October 2016. 
  3. ^ a b c d "Region V (BICOL REGION)". Census of Population (2015): Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay (Report). PSA. Retrieved 20 June 2016. 
  4. ^ a b c "2016 National and Local Elections Statistics". Commission on Elections. 2016. 
  5. ^ "Municipal: Libon, Albay". PSA. Philippines: National Statistical Coordination Board. Retrieved 8 January 2016. 
  6. ^ "Region V (BICOL REGION)". Census of Population and Housing (2010): Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay (Report). NSO. Retrieved 29 June 2016. 
  7. ^ "Region V (BICOL REGION)". Census of Population (1995, 2000 and 2007): Total Population by Province, City and Municipality (Report). NSO. Archived from the original on 24 June 2011. 

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