MAASINCITYis the capital city and 5th class city in the province of Southern Leyte. The town was converted into a city in the year 2000.
The name Maasin was derived from the salty taste of the water and is said to be the oldest town in Southern Leyte and was already well established even before the arrival of Spanish missionaries. In 1700 the Society of Jesus missionaries built a parish in Maasin and called it as “nipa”. A remaining piece of stone proves the existence of the said parish.
Later on Jesuit missionaries administered the town till 1768, after which Augustinian fathers took over the administration from 1768 to 1843 and another Church was built. In 1843, Franciscan missionaries took over the parish and managed it until 1896, it was only during the revolution when the missionaries abandoned the parish and a clergy took over.
In the Spanish era, the townsfolk of Maasin became an organized municipality. However, with the onset of Philippine revolution against Spain various changes in the local governance emerged. Then in 1920, upon the arrival of Americans, Maasin regained their independence in democratic governance. Development soon paved way in the establishment of schools, and businesses until World War II.
On June 3, 1942, Maasin was occupied by the Japanese colonizers leaving many dead, while those who survived sought refuge in mountains and hills to escape the Japanese soldiers. Then in 1944 upon the return of Americans, Maasin was once again a bustling town continuously progressing as a center of commerce and industry in Southern Leyte.
In 1960, Maasin became the capital town and seat of provincial government in Southern Leyte. Then on April 8, 1998 under House Bill No. 7201, Maasin municipality was converted into a component city.
The province has a total land area of approximately 173,480 hectares characterized by flat lands along the coastal areas and mountainous towards the interior. Additionally, the land has numerous small and major rivers.
With the recent census, the population of the city reached 71,163 residents in 14,597 households. The residents generally speak Cebuano or Boholano dialect.
COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY
The city has diverse business opportunities in the production of agricultural and livestock products such as grains, tubers to fruits and vegetables, hog fattening and poultry boiler production; harvests of marine resources that caters to various fishing and aquaculture methods, and development of tourism-related ventures.
Maasin city has no dry season. However, rainy season can be felt during the months of June to October, and a cool weather during the months of November to February with temperatures ranging from 22 to 28 degrees. Average humidity is approximately 77%.
ARTS & CULTURE
The townsfolk of Maasin City remain in its religiosity, giving importance to preserving its Spanish-era Churches. However, some folks still very much believe in their traditional folk beliefs and superstitions such as farmers giving out offerings and sacrifices before the start of planting season or ritual sacrifice of chicken and pigs to ensure a good harvest with the blessing of the spirits or elementals of their land.
Most of the residents are Roman Catholics, and over the years the townsfolk became more aware of their role in the local church through various diocesan programs designed by the number of lay ministers and priests in every parish in the city.
The Diocese of Maasin continues to develop the people’s participation in terms of local issues such as reforestation among many other local activities for the benefit of the town. They have also put up a Social Action Center that offers livelihood projects for the townsfolk. There is also an existing Commission on Youth that helps the formation of youth in all parishes through youth encounters and leadership training.
The Diocese of Maasin marked its 25th anniversary as a diocese in the year 1993 with a theme "RENEWAL: the challenge of the faithful in the Diocese of Maasin."
LIST OF “BARANGAYS” (or communities)
Maasin City is politically subdivided into 70 barangays:
This spring is located in Barangay San Joaquin, Macrohon with swimming pools ideal for swimming.
The beach is located in Barangay San Roque, Liloan which has white crystal sand and colorful sea shells can be seen. This is an excellent location for picnics, swimming and diving.
The palace has been the seat of all Philippine Presidents since Spanish era; it is situated in the north side of the Pasig River.
This island resort is located in the towns of Inopacan and Hindang. The resort provides nipa huts ideal for picnics and overnight hangouts. The place can be reached via a pump boat approximately 30 minutes away from the town proper.
ESFA BEACH RESORT
This resort is ideal for vacationers with complete facilities provided, ideal for swimming and diving.
GUINSOHOTAN AND BUSAY FALLS
Be mesmerized by the clear flowing waters of this fall ideal for swimming and picnics.
This place is great for mountain hiking since it has the highest elevation in Maasin City. During the Spanish colony, this trail was once used as a watch point.
KUTING BEACH RESORT
Tourists can enjoy the wide stretches of sandy beach in this resort, situated in Macrohon community.
This is the historic site of the First Catholic Mass in the Philippines when Ferdinand Magellan came in 1521. The island can be reached via a 45 minutes boat ride from Padre Burgos.
This beach is situated in Barangay Sna Roque, Liloan offering white sand beach excellent for swimming and fishing.
The cathedral houses old images of saints that date back in the Spanish era.
The reef is said to be the best spot for scuba diving.
The park is 3 kilometers away from the Phil-Japan Friendship Highway in Sogod, covering 500 hectares of forest with four waterfalls.
MOHON – SAN JOAQUIN BEACH
The beach is also situated in Macrohon ideal for family gatherings and outings which also provides private beach cottages.
This island is said to be the second deepest body of water in the world, situated in Liloan.
This place is perfect for sightseeing and swimming located in Anahawan community.
This is also known as Santa Sofia Beach situated in Padre Burgos which features a concrete stairway to a watch tower overlooking the sea and Limasawa Island.
This is an invisible strait located in Macrohon community.
Maasin City and Liloan has their own seaport. Ship travel from Cebu to Maasin takes about six hours, and two hours via Supercat and Waterjet service.
There are at least four bus companies taking the Manila-Maasin route: Philtranco, Cedec, Inland Trailways, and Ciudad. Bachelor takes the Ormoc-Maasin-Davao route.
From the Maasin City, by land, it takes approximately five hours to travel to Tacloban City; twenty three hours to Pasay City or Quezon City; and, nineteen hours to Davao City via Liloan ferry boat.