Roxas City is the capital of the province of Capiz. In fact, the province got its name from it, which was formerly called the Municipality of Capiz before it was renamed in honor of Manuel Roxas, the fourth president of the Republic of the Philippines. Today, it serves as the gateway to the province and nearby areas in Panay Island. Here are some of the key attractions in Roxas City.

Roxas City Museum (Ang Panublion)

Sitting at the heart of the city is the Roxas City Museum, officially named Ang Panublion Museum. The Hiligaynon term panublion means “heritage”, an apt description because it showcases cultural and historical artifacts including those of the province’s indigenous groups, the Ati and the Panay Bukidnon.

It is a great first stop of the tour because it can serve as a quick overview of what the city and province have to offer. This way, you’ll have more context when you visit another historic or cultural site, allowing you to appreciate them better.

Also on display are collections depicting the history of Capiz and of Panay Island as a whole. At the very center of the room stand blown-up photographs of various scenes in the province.

The museum structure itself is considered a historical landmark. Dating back to 1910, the circular water tank survived the claws of World War II and was eventually repurposed as a museum in 1993 by the city government.

Roxas City Plaza

Just one block away from the Panublion Museum lies the Roxas City Plaza, the city’s historic core. Surrounded by a number important structures, the square is a one-stop site to see some of the city’s key landmarks:

  • a fountain at the center, which also serves as the Kilometer 0 mark
  • the Rizal Monument and the Capiz Provincial Capitol on the eastern side
  • a historic bridge on the southern side
  • the Roxas City Hall on the northern side
  • the Roxas Monument on the western side
  • the City Bandstand

Immaculate Conception Metropolitan Cathedral

But perhaps the most dominant structure here is the Roxas Cathedral. More formally known as the Immaculate Conception Metropolitan Cathedral, it is the center of Catholic faith in Capiz and the seat of the Archdiocese of Capiz.

The church’s history can be traced back all the way to 1707, when it was established by Augustinian missionaries. But the building we see today was completed in 1827.

Palina Greenbelt Ecopark & River Cruise

Situated on the outskirts of the city, about five kilometers west of the urban center, the Palina Greenbelt Ecopark offers riverside agro-tourism, river tour, and fresh seafood treat on one of the many floating open-hut cottages.

Get a glimpse into the seafood farming industry. Remember, Roxas City is the country’s seafood capital! Here, fishermen grow their own oysters, mussels, shrimps, and other marine products, promoting sustainable tourism and the local community’s livelihood.

Baybay Beach

Covering the northern border of Capiz, the seven-kilometer Baybay Beach is a popular leisure destination for locals because of its close proximity to the city center. Also called La Playa de Roxas, it overlooks the Sibuyan Sea, providing charming beachfront views, making it a favorite hangout spot, meeting place, and street food joint in Roxas.

The seemingly endless stretch of fine dark gray sand makes it a good venue for many activities including swimming, picnicking, playing beach sports, jogging, strolling, and watching the sunrise and sunset. From here, you’ll have a good look at some of the islands fronting the city including Mantalinga Island and Olotayan Island.

Mantalinga Island

There are different kinds of beauty. Mantalinga Island is a kind that one can only admire but not conquer. Separated from the mainland about one kilometer off the northern coast of Roxas City, the uninhabited island is visible from Baybay Beach, whether on the shore or in one of the restaurants lining the beach.

Crowned with greenery, the island sits on a rocky elevated throne, making it hard for people to dock and set foot on the island. It used to serve as a roundabout for kayaking and sailboat racing competition. The waters surrounding the island are adorned with colorful corals and are home to a diverse marine life, providing a perfect spot for scuba divers.

Nicknamed “Good Luck Island”, Mantalinga is believed to bring good luck to fishermen who will have the names of their boats written on the rocky foundation of the island before they go fishing during its maiden voyage. According to a legend, Mantalinga, along with Olotayan Island and Iloilo’s Gigantes Islands, is part of a giant’s body representing the eyes and the ears, hence the name.

Banica Dried Fish Center

Banica Dried Fish Center is located over two kilometers east of the city center, in Barangay Banica. It is a popular wholesale dried fish market and pasalubong center. The whole stretch of street, from the main road to the Banica Wharf, is lined with vendors selling different kinds of dried fish — tabagak, barol, balingon, and dilis, just to name a few. If you are planning to buy pasalubong here, your landmark is the Banica Bridge and the Shell Gasoline Station.

Olotayan Island

Olotayan Island is a 53-hectare island in Capiz abundant in greenery surrounded by clear emerald sea waters teeming with marine life and pockets of white sand beaches. It is the best site for snorkeling, scuba diving and beach bumming with its notable white sand beaches mixed with crush corals and seashells. It is an inhabited island yet it seems like it’s in raw form since the locals are taking good care of the island. The name of the island comes from the native words “olo” which means head and “tyan” which means stomach and has a popular legend behind.

Cadimahan River Tour

Another popular destination in Capiz that offers a relaxing river cruise is the Cadimahan River Tour. Tourists may choose to have a river cruise down the Cadimahan River or stay on a stationary floating restaurant. Similar to the services offered in Palina Greenbelt Ecopark, sumptuous seafood dishes are also being offered in the floating restaurant and additional services such as foot spa and body massage. On a river cruise, enjoy the views of mangroves and beautiful flying birds such as mangrove blue catcher, egret, tern and black-winged stilt while local singers entertain you with Hiligaynon folksongs.

Suhot Cave and Spring

Suhot Cave and Spring is one of the famous tourist spots in Capiz which is a favored destination among the locals. Onsite are open huts facing the developed spring pool wherein the cold and natural spring are coming out from the rock on the cave. A stone throw away from the spring pool is the Suhot Cave. Not that much interesting stalactites and stalagmite formations but still worth exploring to have some adventure. A 15-minute trek from Suhot Cave and Spring is another cave called Lahab Cave. Visitors may enjoy dipping or swimming on the refreshing spring or go spelunking on the nearby caves.

Malinamon Falls

Malinamon Falls is one of the recently discovered tourist spots in Capiz. It is a scenic waterfall that cascades on a rocky riverbed down the plunge pool. The basin or the plunge pool is good for swimming for the physically fit visitors since in most occasions, the current is a bit strong. Although, most people choose to climb up at the topmost part of the falls and have some spots for waterfall massage. Climbing the rocky riverbed alone is a big challenge. The falls is inside the premises of Camp Peralto, a military cam and reservation in the town of Jaminda. For interested visitors, prior arrangements should be done through the Capiz Provincial Tourism and Cultural Affairs Office.

Panay Church

Panay Church, also known as Santa Monica Parish Church, is the most prominent historical landmark in the province of Capiz. It is a neo-classical baroque church built 1884 made of coral blocks. It has a fascinating facade and artistic retablos inside with carved wooden designs. Beside the church is a 5-storey belfry which houses the Largest Bell of the County made from 70 sacks of coin gold and silver given by the people of the town. The sound of the bell can be heard 8 kilometers away. Atop the belfry, visitors would notice the scenic views of the town and nearby looming mountains.

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