Capiz is a province of the Philippines located in the Western Visayas region. Capiz, which is famous for stories about aswangs and other creatures of Philippine mythology, is also the home of capiz shells that are used to make home décor—one of the biggest exports of the Philippines.
There are a lot of places in Capiz that haven’t been discovered by tourists and fellow Filipinos. For one, there’s the Baybay beach which is 16 miles long, one mile wide and is the 15th natural bay in the world. It is located in Roxas City, the capital of Capiz province. They say that the beach’s warm sand is therapeutic and very soothing. This makes the water ideal for swimming at any time of the day which is good since most of us think that the water’s cold at daytime. Some beachgoers bury their body in the sand which can actually be an alternative to high-end spa’s saunas and jacuzzis.
A kilometre away from Baybay beach is Mantalinga Island, which is an ideal diving spot for scuba divers and can also serve as a place to hold sailboat and kayaking contests. Some people have also given it the nickname of “Good Luck Island,” especially tourism consultants, because it is believed that the place is a source of luck for local fishermen. They write the names of their fishing boats on the side of the island before they set out to sea for the first time.
Roxas City, Capiz, was named after Manuel A. Roxas, the 1st president of the 3rd Philippine republic. He was born on January 1, 1892, and his birthplace still stands at Rizal Street (corner Zamora Street), just a few minutes away from the city hall and city plaza.
Another tourist attraction is the iconic 12-foot landmark of the Virgin Mary visible at a mountaintop in Brgy. Dulangan, Pilar, Capiz. It was built by a wealthy Chinese-Filipino trader in honor of Pilar, Capiz’s patron saint, also said to have made miraculous powers to its devotees several times.
Still in Pilar, Capiz, is the sacred Santisima Trinidad or the Holy Trinity. It is an early 18th-century wooden figurine from Mexico found by local fishermen in the shores of the town during the British invasion of the Philippines in 1762. The figurine was on board a galleon trading ship from the port of Acapulco, Mexico, which was destroyed by British warships during its route in Luzon and was washed off to the coast of Pilar. It is now still displayed at the altar of the town’s church, the Parish of the Most Holy Trinity.
The Sta. Monica Church in Pa-nay, Capiz, houses the biggest Catholic church bell in Asia. The church’s five-storey belfry contains a huge antique bell surrounded by 8 smaller bells. It is said that the bell was cast from 76 sacks of coins that have been contributed by the citizens of the town. The church is of baroque architecture, which reflects the town’s Spanish heritage and influences.