Masbate: Sightseeing at City’s Famous Spots

The morning after my Visita Iglesia in Albay, I checked out of my inn at Legazpi City and went directly to city terminal across the soon-to-open SM City Legazpi. The van terminal has destinations direct to towns outside Albay like the ones in Sorsogon and Camarines Sur. In my case, the one leading to Pilar, Sorsogon where I need to ride a fastcraft at its port bound to Masbate City.

Our van didn’t get full after an hour, so we’re asked to pay Php100 each instead. After a mere hour, we’re able to get off at Pilar Port, and bought a fastcraft ticket for trip at 12:00 noon.

Montenegro’s Fastcraft Ticket Counter
Leaving the Port of Pilar in Sorsogon
My 56th province so far. The famous nickname was due to the fact that this province hosts the Rodeo Masbateño Festival every April to showcase rodeo events like calf wrestling, bull riding, calf lassoing, carambola and other related events.


After a 2-hour ride, we alighted at the Port of Masbate and I walked towards the town center where I saw a heritage house and cathedral uphill. Since I didn’t have any reservation on the island, I researched and went to a budget hostel. Luckily, I was able to get a fan room for 2 nights at Php700. I left my backpack and went on a city tour on foot. It’s my habit to go to local tourism office to get guide maps on my tour and recommendations on food trips, and that’s what I did. I was glad to get a beautiful brochure. Thanks City of Masbate! See my itinerary below:

Let’s explore Masbate City!
The account that “Masbate” was coined after the words “masa” and “bate” or from another word “masibat” remains anecdotal up to the present.




The main gateway to other islands outside Masbate. From the Port of Manila, it will take about 16 to 18 hours. Other sea trips are via Dalahican Port in Lucena, and to Allen, Northern Samar. To the neighboring islands, Masbate City is three hours away by boat from the nearest point in Bicol mainland; two hours from Pilar port via fastcraft; three hours away from the nearest point in Burias; three hours away from the nearest municipality in Ticao Island; five hours from the nearest point in the island of Cebu and five hours from the nearest point in Panay island.


VILLA BAYOT (Zurbito Street)

Bring yourself to the rich cultural heritage of the past thru a visit at Villa Bayot located at Zurbito Street, Masbate City. This century-old two-storey building is owned by the family of Don Francisco Bayot.
Rules to abide in local language called Masbateño or Minasbate, considered a Bisakol language, meaning a language intermediate between Visayan languages and Bicolano languages. It is very close to Capiznon, Hiligaynon/Ilonggo and Waray-Waray, all three spoken in Visayas.
It is a must-visit for tourists and pilgrims alike when in the city of Masbate. It housed the miraculous Santo Entierro where devotees offer prayers every Friday.
Queue quietly at Santo Entierro to kiss the feet and usher a short prayer then at one corner, put some blessed oil unto yourself and hold the glass coffin one more time before you exit.



Masbate Cathedral, formally known as the Cathedral-Parish of Saint Anthony of Padua, is the Roman Catholic church located along Quezon Street in Masbate City, Masbate, Philippines. Founded in 1578 by Spanish missionaries, it is presently the cathedral or seat of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Masbate.

Cathedral-Parish of Saint Anthony of Padua
Central aisle
Main Altar
Roman Catholic Diocese of Masbate
Dioecesis Masbatensis (Latin)
Diyosesis san Masbate (Minasbate) 
Diócesis de Masbate (Spanish)



This statue stands infront of Magallanes Coliseum where various cultural activities are held. It pays tribute to a festival dance, characterized by a symbol of religiosity, abundance, artistry and festivity celebrated annually during the month of September. It has a distinct music emanated in the village of Bantigue, where people are known for their strong reverence to Saint Filomena. The bounty of seagulls locally known as “lapay” found in Bantigue propelled an innovative scientific research by Mr. Ramon Ubosan, to associate the Bantigue Dance to Lapay Bird which illustrates a graceful movement.


MASBATE CITY HALL (Municipal Road)

Masbate City, officially the City of Masbate, (Masbateño: Syudad san Masbate; Hiligaynon: Dakbanwa sang Masbate; Cebuano: Dakbayan sa Masbate/Syudad sa Masbate; Central Bicolano: Ciudad nin Masbate; Filipino: Lungsod ng Masbate) is a 4th class city and capital of the province of Masbate, Philippines. As the only city in the province, it serves as the province’s main commercial center and chief seaport.



Housed in the Old Municipal Hall which was built in 1946, CRMIC is a great staging point from which you can plan and begin your journey of discovery and exploration of the diverse and amazing natural and cultural wonders of Masbate.


MASBATE PROVINCIAL HOSPITAL (Provincial Health Office Road)

An old hospital with art deco features, similar to capitol building.



A large park between Masbate’s administrative building where townsfolk chill, rest and others busy doing recreational activities. Provincial tourism office and Jose Rizal Statue are located here.
Jose Rizal Statue
Masbate Social Center Stage



Masbate, officially the Province of Masbate (Masbateño: Probinsya san Masbate; Hiligaynon: Kapuoran sang Masbate; Central Bicolano: Probinsya kan Masbate; Filipino: Lalawigan ng Masbate) is an island province in the Philippines located near the middle of the nation’s archipelago.
Its provincial capital is Masbate City. The province consists of three major islands: Masbate, Ticao and Burias.




The venue of Rodeo Masbateño, the only rodeo show in Asia. It is celebrated annually in April and showcase 10 competitive rodeo events. Highlighting this event is the difficult “figure of eight” competition where the cowboy crisscrosses around a group of barrels. Women participate in heart stopping events like calf wrestling, calf lassoing and carambola.


MANGROVETUM (Nursery Boulevard)

Commune yourself with the abundance of marine habitat within the Masbate City poblacion as the Mangrovetum showcases the rich natural growth of mangroves in the city. The wooden footbridge and its solar powered lamps gives you a perfect avenue for a day and night walking and pictorial.
You can climb on a viewing deck to see Masbate Pass as well as the panoramic city skyline.


BUNTOD SAND BAR AND MARINE SANCTUARY (15 minutes by boat from Brgy. Nursery)

Entralled with the sun, sand and sanctuary of Buntod. It is the first established marine sanctuary of Masbate City where live hard and soft coral covers highlight the majestic underwater sceneries.

Feel the tranquility! When you had the island by yourself and run freely on its clear waters. Especially, time for a perfect selfie. (n_n)
Buntod sandbar from southernmost point. From here, I walked towards the mangroves in the area then went back here to swim. I had snacks tucked in my bag and brought my trash back. Remember, leave only footprints. (n_n)
Mangroves with few huts at the northern end of sanctuary. I took refuge on a nearby mangrove to shield myself from the sun. From a distance, I saw the caretaker raking the dry leaves from the shore.
One of the starfish near the sandbar. Don’t touch them!

Woke up early the next day to get back to Rendezvous Hotel and ride a boat to Buntod Marine Sanctuary. Prior to visit, I already texted Mr. Jojo C Soria, president of SAMAPUSI (09204338512) that I will rent a boat for solo tour (Php500 good for 1-4 persons) and gave me confirmation. From the jump-off point, I walked from shallow bay to my boat and I asked my boatman to fetch me after one-and-a-half hour. I gave also the boat rental payment and the entrance fee of Php20 for the Buntod Sandbar. I explored the area myself with my waterproof bag. Photoshoot starts now!

Buntod rates of activities posted at the entrance of Rendezvous hotel
Boat rentals and other activities offered by SAMAPUSI

After a half-day of frolicking on white sand and scorching sun, my boat arrived and took me back to the shore of the hotel. Since it was still low tide, I had no choice but to walk for hundred meters. Unfortunately, my right slipper broke. I walked with muddy feet back to the Nursery boulevard and I rode a tricycle bound to market to buy a new one. There, I bought also a kilo of dried squid as my brother asked me to bring back home.

Lugsadan Commercial Center on a covered walkway between Quezon and Tara Streets

I spent the rest of the day buying other food products (like carmelado near the port) and especially, foodtrip within the city. I’ll make another post for this.



Moises R. Espinosa Airport (Filipino: Paliparang Moises R. Espinosa, Masbateño: Palupadan san Moises R. Espinosa, Bikol: Palayogan nin Moises R. Espinosa), also known as Masbate Airport (IATA: MBT, ICAO: RPVJ), is the airport serving the general area of Masbate City, located in the province of Masbate in the Philippines.

Going back to reality the next day as my flight bound to Manila was at early morning. I’m thankful that I bragged a promo fare to explore my last province in the Bicol region. Now, I have list of places to explore in Masbate province soon from the guide brochures I got from city and provincial tourism offices. Cheers for more island adventures! (n_n)

Come and visit MASBATE province!


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