Samar travel guide

Samar is a popular Philippine province located in the region of eastern Visayas. Its land area spans more than 6,000 square kilometres and it consists of two major cities and 24 municipalities, with the capital being Catbalogan City. Explorer Ruy Lopez de Villalobos arrived in Samar on 1543 and called it Las Islas Filipinas. Back in the time of Spanish colonisation, Samar belonged to Cebu. It was also united with Leyte and Carigara, but in 1768 became a separate province once more. Today, Samar is an attractive and unspoilt province with a wealth of heritage and culture.

Scenic views and the warm, tropical climate of Samar are enjoyed by most visitors to the province. In general, people visit the area to explore unspoilt wilderness areas, enjoy water sports or simply to relax whilst surrounded by the naturally beautiful environment. People also come to Samar to witness or participate in famous festivals such as Pasidungog, Parayan Harvest Festival and the Kadayaw Festival.

Visiting Samar from Boracay

The people of Samar are generally friendly people and they speak in their native tongue, which is Samarnon-Wara-Waray. Their language is also referred to as Samar-Leyte Visayan, Samarnon or Waraynon, but in municipalities like Santo Nino and Almagro people speak in Cebuano.

Catbalogan City is the main educational, financial, political, commercial and trading centre of Samar and it also serves as the major seaport for inter-island ships. Its central location on eastern Visayas makes it a convenient starting point for trips to other Samar provinces. The city boasts a range of shopping and dining establishments catered to both locals and tourists alike.

Visitors can come to Catbalogan City any day of the year, but if the purpose for visit is to enjoy outdoor activities or to explore a beach, summer is the right season from April to July. In general, Samar’s climate does not have distinctive seasons because rainfall is balanced throughout the year, which contributes to the growth of its rainforests.

Samar has a wealth of natural attractions, which make outdoor activities the top priority of most of its visitors. The Sohoton Cave in eastern Samar is among the top destinations in the province because it offers a relaxed and safe venue for activities like rock climbing, hiking and trekking. Locals also appreciate the cave for its historical value when it served as shelter for native people during ancient times.