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Zamboanga City, Subanen Territory, Mindanao Philippines

Semboangan the now Zamboanga Pink beaches

Zamboanga Pink Beaches

Zamboanga City was the Subanen Tribe business district for trade and barter  before the arrival of the Spaniards. It was named as Semboangan and in the modern times it become established tourist destination in Southern  Philippines and Western Mindanao. 

It is likewise a well-known Philippine destination for cruise ships – especially in the ASEAN, BIMP-EAGA, and South China Sea circuits. Zamboanga City also acts as the gateway and service hub for the other Western Mindanao regional tourism destinations like Pagadian City, Dipolog City, and Dapitan City.

Where to Go in Zamboanga?

Santa Cruz Island 

These islands are known for its pinkish sand beach because of the washed out corals from the sea bottom. On the island is a fishing village, lagoon and an old Moslem burial ground. These are an extensive and varied underwater life of coral heads and rocks, which support a large variety of tropical fish. The place is ideal for swimming, snorkeling, skin, and scuba diving, beachcombing and sunbathing. Sta. Cruz Island can be reached in 15 minutes by motorboats from either Lantaka Hotel or the Zamboanga Golf and Sports Complex.

The islands are located about 4 kilometers from the Poblacion Zones coastline. The islands hold great potential and are ideal for offshore, island - base resort developments. At, present, the islands are being utilized for tourism purposes, but have not reached their full potentials. Existing development plants and programs are very informal.

Bolong beach and Eleven Islands

This destination is about 30 kilometers from downtown Zamboanga City along the eastern coastal areas of the city. The 11 islands, starting with Visa island, the southernmost part of the cluster, is located off Brgy. Bolong while the northernmost part, Lampinigan Island, is 1.5 km. off the shores of Brgy Dita. These islands are scattered over a seven by six kilometer area, spanning four seaside Barangays, namely, Bolong, Panubigan, Lubigan, and Dita, going on a south-north direction. The area has been found to possess varied natural characteristics such as rock formation and off-white beaches fit for various recreational activities.

The island on the eastern side of the 11 island cluster, namely, Visa, Baong, Buguias, and Sirumon islands are gifted with white sand beaches on some portions of the islands edges, which can be ideal for swimming and sunbathing. Around these islands are deep

waters ranging from 16 to 24 fathoms that can be an ideal location for snorkeling , skin and scuba diving. These islands are also highly vegetated, attesting to the fertility of the soil. Some of the islets, particularly those adjacent to Visa and Baong Islands, can possibly be transformed into flower islets where various flower species of Zamboanga City can be cultivated and grown. Since they are very near the larger islands, they can be connected by hanging bridges.

The western side of the 11-island cluster, particularly Cabugan, Limbang, Bobo, and Simoandang, are generally rocks formations but still highly vegetated., except for Cabugan. Cabugan Island, with its relatively high rock information, can be developed for rock climbing rappelling activities with a hiking trail on the island. Some of its ledges can be developed as high as diving take-off points.

Bog Lake

The lake consist of about 60 to 70 has. of wetlands and is bounded on the east by a property owned by the Archdiocese of Zamboanga City where tall acacia trees are grown. This area is adjacent to a highly populated residential area linked to the Southern Command Compound. Another residential area, the Lakeview Subdivision, bounds the take on its west side.

The lake, which is about 4 km. from the city center, is adjacent to the northern half of the Zamboanga Golf and Country Club. Early settlers in Zamboanga remember it as a bird sanctuary during the cold season of neighboring countries. It could be considered as one of the largest bodies of water at the heart of a fast urbanizing area of the City, Calarian.

The Calarian State Freshwater Fisheries Sanctuary and Hatchery is also located at the heart of the lake. Clumps of coconut trees are clustered in the northern part of the lake, while towering old acacia trees can be found in the eastern part. Various types of freshwater fish and crocodiles are found in the lake. The perimeter of the lake area is highly vegetated, though most of them are wild grass and shrubberies.

The western and eastern sides of the lake are being overrun by residential development while the southern side bordering the Zamboanga Golf Course and Country Club is already being encroached by a considerable number of squatters.

Cruise ship Destination Network 

This destination is located in the existing Port Area of the Poblacion Zones. The area holds potential for assorted allied developments revolving on the presence of cruise ship berthing facilities and other related port activities.

Pasonaca Park Complex and Environs 

Located about 7.5 kilometers from downtown Zamboanga City, Pasonanca today is known all over the Philippines as a tourist attraction. It has become a popular site for youth citizenship training and for boys and Girl Scout jamborees. To those who come from the north, perhaps due to its location at about 500 feet above sea level and surroundings of verdant hills and mountains. In a 1959 contest for parks, plazas and gardens nationwide., Pasonanca Park won the First Prize as the Number One Garden of the Philippines. Construction of this Park was began in 1912 by Gen. John J. Pershing, the military Governor for Mindanao.

Pasonanca Park is one of the centerpiece destinations of the city. Aside from the park proper, Pasonanca has a spectrum of other destinations within the park and its environs. Some of these are: Tree House, Pulung Bato – Chief Sarangan House; la Paz Resort, Climaco Freedom park; Bog Lake; Abong-Abong “Greenhouse” and View Decks; Zamboanga Convention and Multi-Purpose Center; and the Brgy. Sta. Maria Flower Showcase.

Tigbalabag Heights 

Located in Bgy. Tigbalabag about 45 kilometers from downtown Zamboanga, the heights are suitable for upland, foothills and watershed-compatible developments. The area has commanding views and panoramic vistas of the city and the Moro Gulf.

Tutungatung Village 

Tuungatung is another Muslim cultural showcase. It is located in Barangay Tulungatung, along the western areas of the city.

Yakan Weaving Village 

The Yakans, the original inhabitants of Basilan Province, are considered one of the finest weavers of the Philippines. The Yakan weave is so fine that it takes a week or so to finish a meter of cloth. The Yakan clothe commands a high price in well-known trade centers in the Philippines because of its design and craftsmanship. It is located in Barangay Upper Calarian.

Zamboanga Convention and Multipurpose Center 

The golf course was originally known as the Zamboanga Golf and Country Club when Gen. John J. Pershing founded it in June 1910. This is one of the oldest golf courses in the country with Gen. Pershing the club’s finest president.

The course has 18 holes spread over 64 hectares and has a fine layout with winding fairways, dogleg situations and good greens planted to Tifton 228. Its bunkers have the unique pink sand from Sta. Cruz Island. Although the course’s first nine is somewhat flat in terrain, its second nine is fairly rolling and skirts the Basilan Strait for a magnificent ocean view. An interesting round is always in store for the average golfer or the proficient campaigner, as long tree mounds assure flexibility. This course has elevated greens, which can be tricky for, their small size and rolling make-up.

The Zamboanga Golf and Sports Complex is an established leisure and recreational facility of the City. It is located in barangay Upper Calarian. It is one of the only two golf courses in the City.