Nueva Vizcaya

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This article is about the Philippine province. For other uses, see Nueva Vizcaya (disambiguation).
New Biscay
Nueva Vizcaya
Nueva Vizcaya Provincial Capitol
Nueva Vizcaya Provincial Capitol
Flag of New Biscay
Official seal of New Biscay
Citrus Capital of the Philippines
Southern Gateway of the Cagayan Valley Region
Watershed Haven of the Northern Philippines
Gateway to the Eighth Wonder of the World (Banaue Rice Terraces)
Location in the Philippines
Location in the Philippines
Coordinates: 16°29′N 121°09′E / 16.483°N 121.150°E / 16.483; 121.150Coordinates: 16°29′N 121°09′E / 16.483°N 121.150°E / 16.483; 121.150
Country  Philippines
Region Cagayan Valley (Region II)
Founded 1839
Capital Bayombong
 • Governor Ruth Padilla (NP)
 • Vice Governor Lambert Galima (NP)
 • Total 3,975.67 km2 (1,535.01 sq mi)
Area rank 34th out of 81
Population (2010)[2]
 • Total 421,355
 • Rank 61/81
 • Density 110/km2 (270/sq mi)
 • Density rank 68th out of 81
Demonym(s) Novo Vizcayano
 • Independent cities 0
 • Component cities 0
 • Municipalities 15
 • Barangays 275
 • Districts Lone district of Nueva Vizcaya
Time zone PHT (UTC+8)
ZIP code 3700 to 3714
Dialing code 78
ISO 3166 code PH-NUV
Spoken languages Ilocano, Pangasinan, Tagalog, Gaddang, Isinai, English

Nueva Vizcaya (English: New Biscay) is a province of the Philippines located in Cagayan Valley region in Luzon. Its capital is Bayombong. It is bordered by Benguet to the west, Ifugao to the north, Isabela to the northeast, Quirino to the east, Aurora to the southeast, Nueva Ecija to the south, and Pangasinan to the southwest. The province is located in the center of Luzon.


The name Nueva Vizcaya may have been derived from the name given at the time to the western Basque territories of Spain, or from the province of Biscay (called Vizcaya in Spanish) itself.


Spanish period[edit]

The areas of present-day Nueva Vizcaya used to be a territory of the vast Provincia de Cagayan,[3] which was once an integral political unit with one governor. The history of organized religion in the province of Nueva Vizcaya dates back to the year 1607 when the Dominican Order arrived at the hinterlands of the province to preach their beliefs. It was not until 1609, however, that the first settlement of a religious order was established in the southern half of the province. In 1702, a convent was erected in Burubur at the foot of the Caraballo Mountains in Santa Clara, which is now a barangay in the town of Aritao. It was on this site that the first mass in Nueva Vizcaya was celebrated and the first baptism of a Christian convert was held. In 1839, upon the advice of the alcalde mayor of Cagayan,[4] then-Governor Luis Lardizabal issued an order creating the politico-military province of Nueva Vizcaya.[3] The order was approved by a Royal Decree on April 10, 1841. The original province covered the areas of present-day Nueva Vizcaya, Mountain Province and a large portion of Isabela.[3] Civil government was established in the province by the Philippine Commission in 1902.[4]

Gateway Arch near Dalton Pass

The territories of Nueva Vizcaya were greatly reduced as a result of the formal creation of the province of Isabela in May 1865, wherein a large portion of its northern territory was ceded to the newly-born province.[3][4]

American period[edit]

In 1908, the northwestern territory of Nueva Vizcaya was annexed to the newly organized sub-province of Ifugao.[3] The survey executed by the Bureau of Lands in 1914 further caused the diminution of its area and reduced again upon the enactment of the Administrative Code of 1917.[4]

World War II[edit]

During the Second World War, Balete Pass was the scene of a major battle between the Japanese and American forces, with the Americans gaining the victory in 31 May 1945.[3][5]:510,535

An old map showing
the province and its original boundaries

Post-war era[edit]

In 1971, with the passage of Republic Act No. 6394, Quirino, which was then a sub-province of Nueva Vizcaya, was separated from its mother province and made into a regular province.[3][4][6][7]

Since Nueva Vizcaya's birth as a province, traces of the culture and customs of its early settlers—the Ilongots (Bugkalot), Igorots, Ifugaos, Isinais, and the Gaddangs—can still be seen. The influx of civilization and the infusion of modern technology to the life stream of the province induced many immigrants from adjacent provinces to migrate to this province.

Every last week of May, Nueva Vizcaya celebrates the Ammungan festival (formerly Panagyaman festival), a week-long affair culminating on May 24, the province's foundation day.



Surrounded by North Luzon's three large mountain ranges, Nueva Vizcaya is generally mountainous, varying from steep mountains to rolling hills, with some valleys and plains.[4] It is bordered on the west by the Cordillera mountains, on the east by the Sierra Madre mountains, and on the south by the Caraballo Mountains.[3] The province (and the whole Cagayan Valley) are separated from the Central Luzon plains by the Caraballo Mountains.

The province has a total land area of 3,975.7 square kilometres (1,535.0 sq mi).[1] The southernmost province in the Cagayan Valley region, Nueva Vizcaya lies approximately 268 kilometers north of Metro Manila and can be reached by land via the Cagayan Valley Road (Maharlika Highway).


Nueva Vizcaya is subdivided into 15 municipalities, with Bayombong as the provincial capital and major educational center, Bambang (the agricultural hub) and Solano (the financial district) as the major commercial centers, and Kayapa as the summer capital and "vegetable bowl" of the province. All municipalities belong to the lone legislative district of the province.[8]

 †  Provincial capital
Seal Municipality Land area
(per km2)
No. of
ZIP code Income

Alfonso Castañeda 375.40 7,428 20 6 3714 4th Nueva Vizcaya Map locator-Alfonso Castañeda.png
Ambaguio Nueva Vizcaya.png Ambaguio 156.26 13,452 86 8 3701 5th Nueva Vizcaya Map locator-Ambaguio.png
Aritao Nueva Vizcaya.png Aritao 265.60 37,115 140 22 3704 2nd Nueva Vizcaya Map locator-Aritao.png
Bagabag Nueva Vizcaya.png Bagabag 183.90 35,462 190 17 3711 2nd Nueva Vizcaya Map locator-Bagabag.png
Bambang Nueva Vizcaya.png Bambang 345.00 47,657 140 25 3702 1st Nueva Vizcaya Map locator-Bambang.png
Bayombong Nueva Vizcaya.png Bayombong 136.00 57,416 420 25 3700 1st Nueva Vizcaya Map locator-Bayombong.png
Diadi Nueva Vizcaya.png Diadi 181.20 16,484 91 19 3712 4th Nueva Vizcaya Map locator-Diadi.png
Dupax del Norte Nueva Vizcaya.png Dupax del Norte 347.30 25,697 74 15 3706 3rd Nueva Vizcaya Map locator-Dupax del Norte.png
Dupax del Sur Nueva Vizcaya.png Dupax del Sur 374.70 18,146 48 19 3707 2nd Nueva Vizcaya Map locator-Dupax del Sur.png
Kasibu Nueva Vizcaya.png Kasibu 318.80 33,379 100 30 3703 4th Nueva Vizcaya Map locator-Kasibu.png
Kayapa Nueva Vizcaya.png Kayapa 482.90 21,453 44 30 3708 3rd Nueva Vizcaya Map locator-Kayapa.png
Quezon Nueva Vizcaya.png Quezon 187.50 19,385 100 12 3713 4th Nueva Vizcaya Map locator-Quezon.png
Santa Fe Nueva Vizcaya.png Santa Fe 399.81 14,427 36 16 3705 3rd Nueva Vizcaya Map locator-Santa Fe.png
Solano Nueva Vizcaya.png Solano 139.80 56,134 400 22 3709 1st Nueva Vizcaya Map locator-Solano.png
Villaverde Nueva Vizcaya.png Villaverde 81.50 17,720 220 9 3710 5th Nueva Vizcaya Map locator-Villaverde.png
Ph seal nueva vizcaya (new render).png Nueva Vizcaya Total 3,975.67 421,355 110 275 3700 - 3714 2nd[8] Ph locator map nueva vizcaya.png


The 15 municipalities of the province comprise a total of 275 barangays, with Roxas in Solano as the most populous in 2010, and Santa Rosa in Santa Fe as the least.[8][9]


Nueva Vizcaya has one congressional district, although there has been a longtime proposal to divide the province into two congressional districts: "North District," comprising the northern municipalities; and "South District," composed of the southern towns.


Ilongot tribe from Oyao in Nueva Vizcaya
Population census of Nueva Vizcaya
Year Pop. ±% p.a.
1990 301,179 —    
1995 334,965 +2.01%
2000 366,962 +1.98%
2007 397,837 +1.12%
2010 421,355 +2.11%
Source: National Statistics Office[10][11]


Large percentage of Roman Catholic by about 70% reflects the province's strong Catholic influence in cultural and political aspects. Other faiths are divided among Aglipayan Church which has a large minority about 20%, Baptist, Iglesia Ni Cristo, Church of Christ of latter Day Saints, Jehovah's Witnesses, Seventh-day Adventist and other Evangelical Christians as well as Muslims.


Tilapia, St Peter's Fish

Agriculture is the main industry in the province, together with rice, corn, fruits and vegetables as major crops.[12] Nueva Vizcaya is a major producer of citrus crops in the country, principally pomelo, ponkan and oranges. Nueva Vizcaya Agricultural Terminal in Bambang supply the demand of neighboring provinces and to Metro Manila. There is a mining industry in the province which added to the province income.[13][14]

According to the Bureau of Mines and Geo-Sciences, deposits of metallic minerals which were discovered in the province are copper, gold, molybdenum and pyrite. Non-metallic deposits include red clay, white clay and limestone. Sand and gravel are the most abundant deposits in the province.

On January 11, 2008, the Cagayan Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) stated that tilapia (species of cichlid fishes from the tilapiine cichlid tribe) production grew and Cagayan Valley is now the Philippinestilapia capital (Saint Peter's fish). Production supply grew 37.25% since 2003, with 14,000 metric tons (MT) in 2007. The recent aquaculture congress found that the growth of tilapia production was due to government interventions: provision of fast-growing species, accreditation of private hatcheries to ensure supply of quality fingerlings, establishment of demonstration farms, providing free fingerlings to newly constructed fishponds, and the dissemination of tilapia to Nueva Vizcaya (in Diadi town). Former cycling champion Lupo Alava is a multi-awarded tilapia raiser in Bagabag, Nueva Vizcaya. Also, Nueva Vizcaya Gov. Luisa Lloren Cuaresma also entered into similar aquaculture endeavors in addition to tilapia production.[15]


Nueva Vizcaya has two universities. There's a lot of High Schools and Elementary/Middle Schools found in the province.



  • Aldersgate College (in Solano)
  • PLT College Inc. (in Bayombong)
  • King's College of the Philippines (formerly: Eastern Luzon Colleges) (in Bambang)
  • Nueva Vizcaya Institute (in Aritao)
  • Vizcaya Institute of Computer Science (in Bayombong)
  • Sierra College (in Bayombong)
  • Nueva Vizcaya Caregiver Academy (in Solano)
  • Solano Intitute of Technology (in Solano)
  • Fuzeko Polytechnic College (in Solano)
  • Northern Luzon Technical Institute (in Bayombong)
  • Saint Mary's University (in Bayombong)


  1. ^ a b "List of Provinces". PSGC Interactive. Makati City, Philippines: National Statistical Coordination Board. Retrieved 16 December 2013. 
  2. ^ "Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay: as of May 1, 2010" (PDF). 2010 Census of Population and Housing. National Statistics Office. Retrieved 18 December 2013. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h Lancion, Jr., Conrado M.; de Guzman, Rey (cartography) (1995). "The Provinces". Fast Facts about Philippine Provinces (The 2000 Millenium ed.). Makati, Metro Manila: Tahanan Books. pp. 118, 48, 49, 84. ISBN 971-630-037-9. Retrieved 16 January 2015. 
  4. ^ a b c d e f "Provincial Profile". Province of Nueva Vizcaya (official website). Retrieved 17 January 2015. 
  5. ^ Smith, R.R., 2005, Triumph in the Philippines, Honolulu: University Press of the Pacific, ISBN 1410224953
  6. ^ "Republic Act No. 4734 - An Act Creating the Subprovince of Quirino in the Province of Nueva Vizcaya". Chan Robles Virtual Law Library. Retrieved 13 January 2015. 
  7. ^ "Brief History of Quirino". Province of Quirino (official website). Retrieved 13 January 2015. 
  8. ^ a b c d e "Province: Nueva Vizcaya". Philippine Statistics Authority - National Statistical Coordination Board. Retrieved 2 February 2015. 
  9. ^ a b "2010 Census of Population and Housing: Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay:as of May 1, 2010" (PDF). National Statistics Office. Retrieved 25 January 2015. 
  10. ^ name=NSO10
  11. ^ "Population and Annual Growth Rates for The Philippines and Its Regions, Provinces, and Highly Urbanized Cities" (PDF). 2010 Census and Housing Population. National Statistics Office. Retrieved 26 August 2013. 
  12. ^ name=FastFactsPhilProv
  13. ^
  14. ^
  15. ^ Abs-Cbn Interactive, Cagayan Valley country’s tilapia capital

External links[edit]