Western Visayas, also known as Region VI, is an administrative region in the Philippines. It is located in the western section of the Visayas. The region’s current name is in reference to its geographic position in the greater Visayas area.
|Land Area (2013)||207.78 km2 (8022.54 sq mi)|
|Population as of 01 May 2020||7,954,723|
|Regional Center||City of Iloilo|
|Provinces of Region 6||Aklan, Antique, Capiz, Guimaras, Iloilo, and Negros Occidental|
|Highly urbanized city||Bacolod and Iloilo City|
|Consists of||16 cities, 117 municipalities, and 4,051 barangays|
Also Read: List of Regions in the Philippines
Provinces and Cities
Region VI consists of six provinces and two highly urbanized cities. The provinces are:
- Aklan: Aklan is an administrative region in the Philippines known for its vibrant Ati-Atihan Festival. The capital city of Aklan is Kalibo.
- Antique: Antique is another province in Region 6, known for its preserved colonial structures and pristine beaches. The capital city of Antique is San Jose de Buenavista.
- Capiz: Capiz is renowned for its seafood, particularly oysters and milkfish. The capital city of Capiz is Roxas, which is also known as the “Seafood Capital of the Philippines”.
- Guimaras: Guimaras is an island province known for producing sweet mangoes. The capital of Guimaras is Jordan.
- Iloilo: Iloilo is a province rich in history and cultural heritage. Its capital, Iloilo City, is one of the major urban centers in the Philippines.
- Negros Occidental: Negros Occidental, also known as Occidental Negros or Western Negros, is the most populous city in Western Visayas. Its capital is Bacolod, which is also one of the major urban centers in the Philippines.
The two highly urbanized cities are Bacolod and Iloilo City. The regional center is Iloilo City.
Population and Area
As of the 2020 Census, the region had a population of 7,954,723. This represented 38.65% of the overall population of the Visayas island group or 7.30% of the entire population of the Philippines. The land area of the region is 20,794.18 km², making the population density approximately 383 inhabitants per square kilometer.
Region 6 Map
The region is dominated by native speakers of four Visayan languages: Hiligaynon, Kinaray-a, Aklanon, and Capiznon.
Regions first came into existence on September 24, 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 Aklan, Antique, Capiz, Iloilo (including its then-subprovince of Guimaras), and Negros Occidental were grouped together to form the Western Visayas region.
The region underwent several changes over the years, including the transfer of the province of Palawan to Region VI in 2005, and the removal and subsequent return of the province of Negros Occidental and its capital, Bacolod.
Western Visayas consists of the major island of Panay and the smaller Guimaras, as well as several outlying islands. It is bordered, clockwise from the North, by the Sibuyan Sea, Jintotolo Channel, Visayan Sea, Tañon Strait, Central Visayas, Sulu Sea, and the Tablas Strait.
In conclusion, Western Visayas, or Region VI is a vibrant and diverse region with a rich history and culture, making it a significant part of the Philippines.
Natural Attractions in Region 6
Some of the natural attractions in Region 6 include the following:
- Boracay Island in Aklan is famous for its white sand beaches, turquoise waters, and vibrant nightlife. Boracay is considered one of the best islands in the world by various travel magazines and websites.
- Malumpati Cold Spring in Antique is a natural swimming pool with clear and refreshing water. The spring is surrounded by lush greenery and offers various activities such as kayaking, rafting, and zip-lining.
- Mantalinga Island in Capiz, which is also known as Maningning Island. It is a small island with a lighthouse and a sandbar that connects it to the mainland during low tide. The island is ideal for snorkeling, fishing, and picnicking.
- Guimaras Island in Guimaras is famous for its sweet and succulent mangoes. The island also boasts of scenic beaches, caves, waterfalls, and historical sites. Guimaras is also the venue of the annual Manggahan Festival, which celebrates the mango harvest and showcases the culture and products of the province.
- Miagao Church in Iloilo, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is a baroque church built in the 18th century with a distinctive facade that features a bas-relief of St. Christopher carrying the Christ child amid coconut, papaya, and guava trees. The church is also known for its ornate carvings, paintings, and sculptures.
- The Ruins in Negros Occidental is a mansion built in the early 20th century by a sugar baron named Don Mariano Ledesma Lacson. The mansion was burned down during World War II to prevent the Japanese from using it as a headquarters. The remains of the mansion, which feature Italianate architecture and intricate details, are now a popular tourist attraction and a venue for events.