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Camarines Norte


From 1573 to 1829, Camarines sur and Camarine Norte formed only one political unit known as Ambos Camarines.

In 1829, they were separated but reunited again in1854. They again separated, to be reunited again in 1893. This union continued until 1919. On March 3, 1919, Camarines Norte was created by the Philippine Legislature in Act 2809.

When Camarines Norte was separated from Ambos Camarines in 1829, it was assigned to the towns of Daet, as capital, Talisay, Indan (Vinzons), Labo, Paracale, Mambulao (Jose Panganiban), Capalonga, Ragay, Lupi and Sipocot. Seventeen years late, it lost Sipocot, Lupi and Ragay to Camarines Sur in exchange for the town of Siruma.

Juan de Salcedo, dispatched by Legazpi to explore the island in 1571, influence the existence of Camarines Norte. After subduing Taytay and Cainta, he marched further across Laguna and Tayabas.

He visited the rich gold-laden town of Mambulao and Paracale obsessed by them about which he heard from native’s there of existing gold mines.

When Francisco de Sande took over from Legazpi as Governor General, Spanish influence started to be felt in the region. He established a permanent spanish garison in Naga to control the region and defend it from Chinese and Muslim pirates. Capt. Pedro de Chavez was assigned to head this force.

There were already native settlements here when the Spaniards arrived. The flourishing town of Mambulao and Paracale were two of them.

Indan and Daet were the other settlements besides Capalonga and others. But Paracale
remained the most sought after and the most prosperous because of its gold mines.
The towns were chiefly inhabited by Tagalogs; the rests were of Visayan strain. However, most of the immigrants were from Mauban Quezon. The Spanish missionaries did not falter in their mission to Christianized the natives.

By virtue of RA Act 2809 of March 3, 1919, General F. B. Harrison separated Camarines Norte from Camariens Sur with Don Miguel R. Lukban as its first governor. At present it has twelve towns: Basud, Capalonga, Daet, Jose Panganiban, Labo, Mercedes, Paracale, San Lorenzo Ruiz, San Vicente, Santa Elena, Talisay and Vinzons. Daet remained as its capital town.


Camarines Norte or Hilagang Kamarines occupies the northwestern portion of the Bicol Peninsula. Along the coastlines, the province faces the Basiad and Lamon Bay on the west, the Pacific Ocean on the north, and the San Miguel Bay on the east. Inland, it is bounded by the Province of Quezon on the southwest and Camarines Sur on the south.

The province's topography is generally rugged. It is composed of rolling hills and mountainous terrain with only a small coastal plain. Its coastal areas are fertile. Situated on these coastal areas are the towns of Vinzons, Jose Panganiban, Paracale, Sta. Elena, Capalonga, Daet, Basud, Talisay and Mercedes


Camarines Norte has a total land area of 220,012 hectares, or 2,200 square kilometers. This is inclusive of 8,762 hectares of land disputed by the Province of Camarines Norte and Quezon, which was finally awarded to Camarines Norte by the Supreme Court in 1989.


The province is divided into 12 municipalities: Basud, Capalonga, Daet, Jose Panganiban, Labo, Mercedes, Paracale, San Lorenzo Ruiz (formerly Imelda), San Vicente, Sta. Elena, Talisay and Vinzons. The town of Daet is the seat of government and the center of education, commerce, and trade. Other growth centers are Labo, Jose Panganiban, Sta. Elena and Mercedes.

Each municipality is further divided into smaller political units, called barangays. In land size, Labo is the biggest municipality, occupying approximately 23 percent of the total provincial area or 50,360 hectares, and Talisay is the smallest with just 2% or 4,680 hectares. The capital town rank ninth in size.

The province has a population of 470,654 as of May 1, 2000 with a growth rate of 1.50 percent from 1995 to 2000.


Major dialects spoken in the province are Tagalog and Bikol Dialect comprising about 63.09% and 35.57% respectively. About 1.34% of the household surveyed speaks other dialects and languages like Cebuano, Ilocano, Chinese, Pangasinan, Ibanag, and others. The greater number of Tagalog-speaking household may be attributed to the fact that Camarines Norte is adjacent to the Southern Tagalog provinces, from where the majority of migrants to Camarines Norte come from.


Agriculture is the leading and major source of income of the people. Major crops planted are coconut, palay, rootcrops and vegetables.
Pineapple production, on the other hand, made quite a name for Camarines Norte in recent years. Metallic minerals (gold, silver, iron, lead, zinc, bull quartz, iron lump and iron in laterite) and non-metallic minerals (silica sand, kaolin, diatomite, refractory clay and limestone) are found in abundance. Gold production is the signature product of Camarines Norte. The yellowish Paracale gold and the reddish Labo gold extracted by miners and goldpanners from the bowels of earth, helped prop up small and medium scale industries engaged in jewelry production. Other industries found in the province are livestock/poultry and fishery.


Camarines Norte is accessible via land and sea transport.

Land Transport

Camarines Norte is about six hours drive from Manila through lush forests and picturesque seascapes.

Air Transport

Camarines Norte can also be reached by air through the Pili Airport in Camarines Sur. From the airport you can take a bus or a cab to Daet via Naga City,

Sea Transport

Motorboats, motor launches and non-motorized bancas are usually used in transporting passengers and cargoes from the mainland to the coastal barangays and islands of the province.


• Eleven (11) radio stations (3 AM and 8 FM)
• High frequency (HF/SSB) and very high frequency (VHF) transceivers
• 7 Cable television service providers
• One local community TV station (STV-6) and one relay TV Station, the ABS-CBN Channel 2.
• 3 Cellular Mobile telephones (Globe, Smart and Sun).
• 14 public calling offices in the province with a load capacity/number of channels of 428
• Six (6) local newspapers that are operating
• Three (3) internet service providers (ISP)
• Sixteen (16) postal stations
• Seven (7) courier services (LBC, JRS Express, Daily Overland Express, DHL, Aboitiz Express, Camarines Norte Forwarders, and Philparcel).


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