travelgrove Travel Guides

Santiago History, Philippines

Santiago city, Philippines, has a long history. Though much is not known about the early part of Santiago history, the accounts of the initial Spanish missionaries have indicated that present-day Santiago city and its adjoining regions have been inhabited by native tribes like Gaddangs and Ibanags; since most of these native settlements found by the missionaries lay at the bank of Carig River (present-day Diadi River), the region was named Carig.

Santiago History – Spanish Settlement Onwards

Officially, Carig was established in 1743 but Spanish settlements in the region date back to the early years of the 18th century (almost two centuries later than the first Spanish settlement at Cebu, Philippines). It was in the initial Spanish Rule years that Carig was named Pueblo of Santiago Apostol de Carig after the patron saint of Spain, Saint James the Apostle. (The name was officially changed to Santiago only in the 1950s).

To start with, Pueblo of Santiago Apostol de Carig was a part of the Cagayan province in Luzon Island; however, when the province of Isabela was created following the issuance of the Royal Decree on May 1, 1856, the town became a part of the newly created province along with towns like Angadanan, Camarag (modern Echague), Gamu and Palanan. This was followed by the creation of Municipality of Santiago in 1858.

Pueblo of Santiago Apostol de Carig remained more or less an unknown town even after stepping into the 20th Century. It had much less significance than Camarag, which then happened to be the trading point of merchandise exchanged by the people of Isabela province with the outside world via the Cagayan River. Nevertheless, the opening of the Villa-Verde Trail changed things in favor of the Pueblo of Santiago Apostol de Carig – the 27-mile route not only made the Cagayan Valley (especially Pueblo of Santiago Apostol de Carig) more accessible, it also gave direction and motion to the developmental process. The population of the town started swelling and new businesses, etc. were set up.

Santiago History – During the Second World War

WWII years proved troublesome for Pueblo of Santiago Apostol de Carig. By 1942, the town was captured by the Japanese troops and the toughest chapter of the liberation of Philippines was written when the American Army fought a 119-days grueling war (from January 30, 1945 to May 28, 1945) to drive away the Japanese from their strong-hold at the Villa Verde Trail.

Santiago History and its Cityhood

The most important event in Santiago history so far has been the town’s incorporation as a city. The process started in December 1993, with the ratification of the conversion bill (which sought the conversion of the Municipality of Santiago into an independent component city) by the Lower House of the Parliament. In February the following year, the bill was placed before the Senate Committee on Local Government and was approved by the committee on March 14. On May 5, 1994, the then President, Fidel V. Ramos, signed the Republic Act 7720 in Malacanang Palace, Manila, and Santiago was declared an Independent Component City.

The Act had granted Santiago the status of a self-governing city; but soon its self-ruling status was revoked through the Republic Act 8528. Santiago was once again recognized as an Independent Component City with its own government once the Supreme Court ruled against the Republic Act 8528. This paved the path for progress and today, Santiago is one of the leading commercial and industrial cities in Philippines.

Ask our travel experts a question about Santiago

Things about Santiago you may be interested in

1 1 1 157 3 404 1 9 Not Found 1fca
37 404 88 Not Found
Please forward this error screen to 2a's WebMaster.

1ac The server cannot find the requested page:

  • 17 a7 /engine.php? (port 2 80 73 )
  • 107

Read our members' reviews about Santiago

No reviews have been added yet for this category. Be the first to add a new one.

Read our members' travel tips about Santiago

No travel tips have been added yet for this category. Be the first to add a new one.


Members Who Have Been to Santiago

See who has been to Santiago and ask them a question (membership required)
the best travel deals provided by TravelZoo...
Cheap flights to Santiago
  •$194Spirit Airlines flightSpirit Airlines
    Fort Lauderdale, FL (FLL)  Santiago, DO (STI)
    11/03/2021 11:59 pm
    Santiago, DO (STI)  Fort Lauderdale, FL (FLL)
    11/07/2021 03:59 am
  •$205Spirit Airlines flightSpirit Airlines
    Houston, TX (IAH)  Santiago, DO (STI)
    10/13/2021 06:00 am
    Santiago, DO (STI)  Houston, TX (IAH)
    11/03/2021 02:59 am
  •$231Spirit Airlines flightSpirit Airlines
    Orlando, FL (MCO)  Santiago, DO (STI)
    10/06/2021 10:03 pm
    Santiago, DO (STI)  Orlando, FL (MCO)
    10/27/2021 02:16 pm

Santiago City Ratings

  • Rating100%
    City Rank18
  • History & Culture: rated for 100%
  • Night Life & Entertainment: rated for 100%
  • Family & Fun: rated for 100%
  • Outdoors Activities: rated for 100%
  • Food: rated for 100%
  • Sightseeing: rated for 100%
  • Shopping: rated for 100%
  • Public Transportation: rated for 100%
  • Must visit this place: rated for 100%
Santiago is one of the top 20 cities in the world to visit. This rank is based on our travelers' reviews. Please also take the time to rank Santiago or write a Santiago destination review or travel tip to share your opinion.Santiago is one of the "must visit" tourist destinations in the world. This rank is based on what other travelers shared about their experiences in Santiago.
ToolsBookmark and Share

Popular destinations

   Welcome to Travelgrove  register tell a friend bookmark it