It is an island of the Philippines located in the Visayas. It is the third largest island in the country, with a land area of 13,328 km² (5,146 square mi.). Inhabitants of the island are called Negrenses.
This Island is the hidden gem of the Visayas. Go Philippines Travel Limited is pleased to have the boutique hotel Atmosphere as its partner. Atmosphere is situated close to the town of Dauin and if you want diving whilst you are on holiday this is the place to be. It caters for all ages and from novice divers to training people to become instructors. There are lots of excursions which take you deeper into the island to see the flora and fauna.
Politically and linguistically, Negros is divided into two provinces: Negros Oriental in the Central Visayas region and Negros Occidental, part of the Western Visayas region. This division of the island, which roughly follows the mountain range in the center of the island, corresponds to the two ethno-linguistic groups. The western part (Occidental) is where the Ilonggo or Hiligaynon-speaking Negrenses are located, and the eastern portion (Oriental) is home to the Cebuano-speaking population.
The island is further subdivided into 19 cities (18 component cities and 1 highly urbanized city) and 38 municipalities. Chief cities on the island are Bacolod in Negros Occidental and Dumaguete in Negros Oriental.Negros is noted for being the country’s prime producer of sugar. Sugar cane plantations abound in the agricultural areas of the island. The island also produces cotton.
Kanlaon Volcano in the northern part of the island is one of the most active volcanoes in the Philippines, and overlooks Bacolod. It is the highest peak on the island as well as of all the Visayas region. Other notable peaks on the island are Mt Silay and Mt Mandalagan in Negros Occidental, and Cuernos de Negros in Negros Oriental.
The volcanic activity in Negros is harvested into electricity through two geothermal power plants in the island. One is located in Palinpinon, Negros Oriental, and the other, to open in 2007, is in Mailum, Negros Occidental.
Negros Island was originally called Buglas – an old Hiligaynon word thought to mean “cut off.” It is believed that Negros was once part of a greater mass of land, but was cut off by rising waters during the Ice age. Among its earliest inhabitants were dark-skinned natives belonging to the Ati, one of several indigenous Negrito ethnic groups dispersed throughout Asia], who had a unique culture.
Thus, the Spaniards called the land Negros after the black natives they saw on their arrival on the island in April 1565. Two of the earliest native settlements, Binalbagan and Ilog, became towns in 1573 and 1584, respectively. Other settlements were Hinigaran, Bago, Marayo (now Pontevedra), Mamalan (now Himamaylan), and Candaguit (a sitio of San Enrique). In 1572 the Spanish King Philip II conferred the title of Marques de Buglas to the heirs of Juan Sebastián Elcano. The 17th and current Marques resides in Silay City, Negros Occidental.
After appointing encomenderos for the island, Miguel López de Legazpi placed Negros under the jurisdiction of the governor of Oton on Panay. In 1734, however, the island became a military district and Ilog was made its first capital. The seat of government was later transferred to Himamaylan until Bacolod became the capital in 1849.
In 1890, the island was divided into Negros Occidental and Negros Oriental. On April 9, 1901, the Second Philippine Commission under the Chairmanship of William H. Taft, arrived in Dumaguete. On May 1, 1901, the civil government under American rule was established. On August 28, of the same year Dr. David S. Hibbard founded Silliman Institute now Silliman University with the help of Meliton Larena the first town mayor of Dumaguete & Hon Demetrio Larena.