The 17 Regions In The Philippines: An Easy Review

Regions In The Philippines

Planning to visit different rehiyon (in Tagalog) or regions in the Philippines? If you are, then learning about the regions and precisely where it is located will greatly help you, especially if you are creating an itinerary. In as much as you want to visit Boracay and Baguio at the same time, such a route is impossible if you will only be staying in the country for a few days.

Instead of “winging” it, why not try to look for other tourist destinations that are in the same region, right? Let’s learn more about that in this post!

What Are The Regions In The Philippines?

The country has three major island groups known as Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao. Luzon has 8 regions under its belt, while the Visayas has 3 and the Mindanao has 6. Presently, two types of regions exist in the Philippines, including the administrative region (geographically adjacent regions) and the autonomous region (sub-national administrative division).

Region I Rice Terraces With Traditional Bahay Kubos

Region I – Ilocos Region

Region I is one of the many administrative regions in the country, occupying a huge chunk of the northwestern part of Luzon. It is directly facing the South China Sea, and it has four major provinces, including the following:

  • Ilocos Norte
  • Ilocos Sur
  • La Union
  • Pangasinan

Region II – Cagayan Valley

Found in the coastal part of Luzon, the Cagayan Valley region covers five provinces, including the following:

  • Batanes
  • Cagayan
  • Nueva Vizcaya
  • Isabela
  • Quirino

Region III – Central Luzon

The Central Luzon region represents over 19% of the overall population in all of Luzon. It has 116 municipalities, and it includes these seven provinces:

  • Bataan
  • Bulacan
  • Aurora
  • Tarlac
  • Pampanga
  • Zambales
  • Nueva Ecija
Overlooking the NCR National Capital Region

National Capital Region

Also known as the Metropolitan Manila, the NCR is branded as the seat of the government. It is made up of 16 populous cities, including Manila, Quezon City, Makati, Las Pinas, Malabon, Muntinlupa, Mandaluyong, Marikina, Navotas, Pasa, Pasig, Paranaque, San Juan, Venezuela, and Taguig.

Region IV A- CALBARZON

Boasting almost 4ooo barangays (or districts), this region has 5 provinces, including 1 highly urbanized city:

  • Cavite
  • Laguna
  • Batangas
  • Quezon
  • Rizal

Region IV B – MIMAROPA Region

With 71 municipalities and 2 major cities, the MIMAROPA region includes the following:

  • Occidental Mindoro
  • Oriental Mindoro
  • Marinduque
  • Palawan
  • Romblon

Region V – Bicol Region

An administrative region with over 107 municipalities and 3.4k barangays, the Bicol region has 6 major provinces including:

  • Albay
  • Camarines Norte
  • Camarines Sur
  • Catanduanes
  • Sorsogon
  • Masbate

Region VI – Western Visayas

With 117 municipalities and 16 cities under its belt, this region is the home to 6 provinces, including:

  • Aklan
  • Antique
  • Capiz
  • Guimaras
  • Iloilo
  • Negros Occidental

Region VII – Central Visayas

Situated in the central section of Visayas Island, this region is the cradle of four provinces, including:

  • Bohol
  • Cebu
  • Negros Oriental
  • Siquijor

Region VIII – Eastern Visayas

This region has 136 municipalities along with 7 major cities. It is the home to six provinces, including:

  • Biliran
  • Leyte
  • Eastern Samar
  • Northern Samar
  • Samar
  • Southern Leyte

Region IX – Zamboanga Peninsula

This coastal region with 1.9k barangays is also the home to three provinces such as:

  • Zamboanga del Norte
  • Zamboanga del Sur
  • Zamboanga Sibugay

Region X – Northern Mindanao

With 84 municipalities and over 2000 barangays, Northern Mindanao covers five provinces including:

  • Bukidnon
  • Camiguin
  • Lanao del Norte
  • Misamis Occidental
  • Misamis Oriental

Region XI – Davao Region

Bordered by the Philippine Sea and the Davao Gulf, the Davao region has 5 major provinces including:

  • Davao de Oro
  • Davao del Norte
  • Davao Occidental
  • Davao Oriental
  • Davao del Sur

Region XII – SOCCSKSARGEN

With over 45 municipalities and 5 cities, this region is situated in central Mindanao and has four provinces:

  • Cotabato
  • South Cotabato
  • Sultan Kudarat
  • Sarangani

Region XIII – Caraga

This region has 67 municipalities and 5 major provinces including the following:

  • Agusan del Norte
  • Agusan del Sur
  • Dinagat Isands
  • Surigao del Sur
  • Surigao del Norte

CAR – Cordillera Administrative Region

The CAR boasts 2 cities, 75 municipalities, and 6 provinces, including:

  • Abra
  • Apayao
  • Ifugao
  • Benguet
  • Mountain Province
  • Kalinga

BARMM – Bangsamoro Autonomous Region In Muslim Mindanao

Directly in front of the Sulu Sea and the Celebes Sea, the BARMM is the home to five provinces, including:

  • Basilan
  • Lanao del Sur
  • Maguindanao
  • Sulu
  • Tawi-tawi

Is Negros Island A Region?

I know what you’re thinking! Perhaps, you landed on this page because you’re curious to know if the Philippines actually have 18 or 17 regions. Well, here’s the direct answer: Officially, the country only has 17. However, the latest news suggests that the 18th region, known as NIR, might be re-established this 2023.

The Negros Island Region is comprised of two provinces, Negros Occidental and Negros Oriental, both of which offer unique experiences to locals and tourists alike. The Negros Island Region was first created by virtue of Executive Order No. 183, which former President Benigno Aquino III signed on May 29, 2015. The order aimed to consolidate the two provinces into a single region to promote development and improve access to government services in the area.

However, the Negros Island Region was short-lived, as it was dissolved just two years later due to the opposition of various stakeholders who believed that the creation of the region was unnecessary and would only result in the duplication of government functions and bureaucracy. Despite its brief existence, the Negros Island Region remains an important cultural and economic hub in the Visayas. It boasts a rich history, stunning natural landscapes, and diverse cultural traditions that make it a must-visit destination for anyone exploring the Philippines.

Statue of Jose Rizal In Rizal Park In Ermita Manila

How Do You Say Regions In Tagalog?

To say region in Tagalog, use the word rehiyon

So, if you want to refer to the other regions in the Philippines, you can say Unang Rehiyon , Pangalawang Rehiyon, and so on.

If you forgot how to say numbers in Tagalog, brush up with our related article and memorize them again.

Here are other words and vocabularies that can help you speak the Tagalog language fast. Try repeating the pronunciation while remembering these Tagalog words and phrases.

EnglishTagalogSound
ProvinceProbinsya
PlaceLugar/
Pook
/
CityKabisera
Town/HometownBayan
Village/District/WardNayon/Baranggay
Hometown
How do I go to Cebu? Paano ako makakapunta sa Cebu?
Is Manila the capital city of the Philippines?Ang Manila ba ang kabisera ng Pilipinas?
Where is Rizal’s hometown?Nasaan ang bayan ni Rizal?

Frequently Asked Questions About Regions In The Philippines

How Many Regions Does The Philippines Have?

As mentioned earlier, the Philippines has a total of 17 regions as of 2019.

Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao are not regions but are instead the main island groups of the Philippines. In total, these island groups have eight regions and have two types: administrative or autonomous regions.

What Are The 5 Most Populated Provinces In The Philippines?

  1. Cebu
  2. Cavite
  3. Bulacan
  4. Laguna
  5. Rizal

According to the census of the Philippine Statistics Authority, the Republic of the Philippines population is on the rise. The 5 most populous provinces include Cebu (from Western Visayas), with almost 5.2 million people, followed by Cavite (Region IV-A), with 4.5 million, and Bulacan (Central Luzon), with 3.7 million. Laguna (Region IV-A) with 3.38 million, and Rizal (Region IV-A) with 3.3 million.

What Regions In The Philippines Have The Smallest Population?

The small provinces of Batanes (18,831 people), Camiguin (92,808 people), and Siquijor (103,395 people) remain the smallest Philippine populations ever. In total, these three provinces have 215,034 Filipino citizens, which is even smaller than small cities in NCR like Valenzuela, Pasig, Marikina, and even Makati!

Regions In The Philippines Populated Cities

Why Visit The Philippines?

Whenever one thinks about the beauty of the Philippines, what usually comes to mind are the top places in the Philippines, which are usually secluded islands, where you can dip your toes into some of the best beaches there is in the world.

For those in the business and who are looking for jobs, perhaps you also know about the city of Manila (popularly known as Metro Manila), Quezon City, and other popular cities in Luzon. However, this archipelagic country might surprise you since it has tons of places where you can go despite its small land area.

But before we proceed with the discussion, allow me to give you a quick trivia: did you know that the concept of regions only came into existence in 1972? President Ferdinand Marcos signed the presidential decree that stipulates divided the entire country. Back then, the regions were only 11, each with its own regional center.

The following year, the country was further divided into 12 since Region IV was divided into two: CALABARZON and MIMAROPA. In 1978, Metropolitan Manila was rebranded as the National Capital Region. During the presidency of President Corazon Aquino, an executive order was signed to create the Cordillera Administrative Region and the Autonomous Region In Muslim Mindanao (or ARMM).

From 2002 to 2018, all the presidents amended the regional designation to the point that our latest count reached up to 17 regions.

Learn More About The Philippine Regions Now

We hope that you were able to learn about the different provinces located in the Philippines. While the whole country looks small on the maps, perhaps you found yourself surprised to know that there are 17 regions in it. Discover more about the regions of the Philippines, its culture, and its language.

Want access to high-quality lessons, interactive language quizzes, and games? You should not miss out on our most recommended language learning application.

Ready To Learn Tagalog?

There are many reasons to take a trip to the Philippines. It can be the delicious food, the weather, the hospitable characteristics of Filipinos, or even just a change of environment. But we highly encourage you to learn more about the history of the Tagalog language as well as the whole culture and history of the Filipino people.

As you may not know, the regions in the Philippines have different languages apart from the Tagalog language. It’s a great way to start knowing more about the Filipinos by learning how to speak the most popular language in this country.

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