Discover the diversity of this province as you explore the fascinating summer capital of the south with its vibrant culture, historical relics and pristine lake shores combined to make your experience truly unforgettable.


Lanao del Sur has a long, colourful history to share. The Darangen Epic, famous among the Maranaos, relates about ther events and people and defines the old towns during pre-colonial period. Lanao is the home of Maranao sultanate modernly known as the four princilpalities or Pat a Pagampong sa Ranao namely Masiu, Unayan, Balo-I and Bayabao. The Sultanate governs independently yet it is still identified with the national community. Its political power and domain is equally recognized like those in Sulu and Maguindanao.

In the heyday of colonialism, Lanao is proud to have resisted the succeeding foray of Spanish, American and Japanese intrusions. The saga of Maranao heroes who fought bravely in the so-called Moro Wars during the Spanish colonization along with their Tausug and Maguindanao brothers are living proofs. The legendary battles of Bayang, Sultan Gumander, Ganassi and Tugaya records Maranao fighters armed with kris, spear, bow and arrow faced the canons and rifles of the Americans, exhibiting Maranao assertion for freedom and distinct political identity. The Japanese likewise failed following the fate of its predecessors.

The creation of Lanao del Sur is dated during the height of the Commonwealth government campaign for settlement in Mindanao. The undivided Lanao was administratively part and a political unit of the Moro province by virtue of Philippine Commission Act No. 787. Thereafter, in May 27, 1959 by virtue of Republic Act No. 2228, the unified Lanao was divided into two distinct provinces, namely Lanao del Sur and Lanao del Norte. Lanao del Sur was officially chartered on July 4, 1959.

Lanao del Sur went through phases of political changes. As a result of the negotiated settlement with the MNLF (Tripoli Agreement) during the Martial Law years, President Marcos issued P.D. No. 742 which included Lanao del Sur in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM). The constituents of Lanao del Sur affirmed the province inclusion in ARMM during the plebiscite on February 19, 1989. Although Marawi City refused to join first, it reconsidered its position later in 2001.

Lanao del Sur is composed of 39 municipalities and Marawi City. The Province is currently composed of 1,159 barangays and is divided into two congressional districts.



Region  : Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao

Capital  : Marawi City  Divisions:

Component City  : 1

Municipalities  : 39

Barangays  : 1,158 including Marawi City

Congressional Districts  : 2

Population  : 1,138,544 (1 August 2007)

Density  : 84 per sq. km.

Land Area  : 13,574.24 sq. km.

Spoken Languages  : Maranao, Filipino (Tagalog),Cebuano and Arabic

Official Charter  : July 4, 1959 by virtue of R.A. No. 2228

Physical Geography & Climate


The province of Lanao del Sur is located at latitude 7’ 24’ 34” and nestled in the hinterland of Mindanao at an elevation of 702 meters above sea level. It occupies the extensive plateau of North Central Mindanao and surrounds the basin of Lake Lanao. The province of Bukidnon bounds it on the east, on the south of it is Maguindanao and North Cotabato, on the west is Illana Bay and on the northwest is the province of Lanao del Norte.

Lanao del Sur is well-enclosed within the Bukidnon-Lanao highland areas with a series of plateaus, plains, highlands and basins, rolling hills and volcanoes whose mountain ranges serve as a natural boundary from Maguindanao and Cotabato. The province has a total land area of 13,754.24 square kilometers with 387.32 square kilometers of water area composed of lakes and swamps.


Along the northwest portion, the province of Lanao del Sur is accessible through the 36-kilometer Iligan City-Marawi City National Highway. The province is also about 137-kilometer from Cagayan de Oro City through a well-paved road travelled by many public vehicles. On the other hand, the Marawi City-Malabang-Cotabato City route, passing through the Narciso Ramos Highway, connects the province to Maguindanao and other southern Mindanao provinces.

There are regular daily flights from Metro Manila to Cagayan de Oro City. Fast and reliable buses operate between Cagayan de Oro City and Iligan City. Two superior express bus companies are in service, but they are somewhat expensive than the regular buses because they are popular for their spacious seats, air-conditioned interior and facilities like the built-in music and VCR television.

Seaports are located in Iligan and Cagayan de Oro Cities plying routes to Cebu and Manila taking in both passengers and cargoes. Passenger vans ferry passengers from Cagayan de Oro to airport and seaport Marawi City. From the Iligan land transport terminals, the popular jeepneys, locally referred to as Armac passengers and cargoe are ferried to Marawi destination.

For tourists, car rentals are available in Cagayan and Iligan Cities. From Cagayan and Iligan Cities, tourist destinations in Marawi and Lanao del Sur are easily accessible allowing tourist to either go back to the latter or spend nights at the Marawi Ayala Tourist hotel. The hotel is located within the campus of the Mindanao State University, overlooking the scenic Lake Lanao.

Land Area and Classification

The province has a total land area of 13,375.24 square kilometres with an estimate of 387.32 square kilometres of water area composed of useful lakes and swamps. The municipality of Bubong occupies the biggest land area of 798.50 square kilometers while the municipality of Lumbaca Unayan has the smallest land area of 42.28 square kilometers.

The Bureau of Soils identified eleven (11) types of soil common in the province, a large portion of which is suitable for rice and a corn. Salaman Loam clay accounts for 0.52%, Ramain and Buaya-an loam clay with 0.50%, and Pu-an loam clay with 0.21%. All these are identified as good types of land suitable for agricultural cultivation.


The moderately good type of soil is the Binidayan silt loam which is 11.1%, while the fairly good soil but limited for cultivation are the Adtuyo clay loam, Langkong Sandy loam and Kundarangan clay loam comprising about 33.3% land with a soil type limited to pasture and forest are the Malabang sandy loam, Adtuyo-bam Castillan Complex, Caromatan Silt Loam, Bolinao Silt loam, Kidapawan clay loam and Jansan clay loam with an aggregate percentage of 15.62%. Land with a soil type suitable for forestry is the mountain soil with 30.15%. Another soil type is the Kudarang loam clay which comprises about 30.15%.


Timberland forms 65.6 % of the province while the remaining 34.2% is classified as alienable and disposable. In 1986, the NSO data revealed that 1,331 square kilometers was certified as A&D land and 2,540.7 square kilometers as forestland. In 1997, however, there was a decrease of 11.85% of the total forest land, thus, decreasing the forest land to 53.75% while the Alienable and Disposable land area had increased to 46.25%.

The A&D lands of the province have a total area of 1,502.523 square kilometers. The largest A&D land, with an area of 167.040 square kilometers, is found in the Municipality of Tagoloan and the smallest A&D land, with only 5.125 square kilometers, is in the Municipality of Madalum.


The production areas within A&D lands constitute a total of 843.86 square kilometers which are divided according to the type of crops planted, such as: 192.623 square kilometers for seasonal crops; 507.384 square kilometers for annual crops and 5.766 for perennial crops and fruit bearing trees.


The thick and lush forest surrounding the province provides a natural shield against typhoons and floods. Lying hundreds of meters below sea level, the province has a cool temperature, which dwindles between 16.0 to 22.0°C adding to its tourism potential during summers. The lowest recorded temperature was 12° C.

Mostly sunny days can be expected from March to May. Monsoon rains usually begin around the mid of June and last until mid-to-late of October. November to February is cold months. During these months, four or five days of awfully cold weather are often followed by a few warmer days.



The population of the province is predominantly muslims, comprising about 92.4% making MarawiCity as the only Islamic City of the South. The Maranaosare religious and observe daily prayers. The presence of numerous mosques in and outside MarawiCity speaks for the strong faith Muslims are known of.


The province of Lanaodel Sur is located at latitude 7 24’ 34’ and nestled in the hinterland of Mindanao at the elevation of 702 meters above sea level. It occupies the extensive plateau of North Central Mindanao and surrounds the basin of the Lake Lanao. The province of Bukidnonbounds it on the east, Maguindanaoand North Cotabatoon the south, IllanaBay on the west and andLanaodel Nortebounds it on the northwest part of the province.Lanaodel Sur is well-enclosed within the Bukidnon-Lanaohighland areas with a series of plateaus, plains, highlands and basins, rolling hills and volcanoes, which mountain ranges serve as a natural boundary from Maguindanaoand Cotabato. The province has a total land area of 12, 061.82 with 357.0 square kilometres of water area composed of lakes and swamps.


Sense of seniority. Traditional Filipino social structure is evidently changing in some parts of the country today. Customs and traditions in terms of values have been given less important to many tribes. Despite of all changes we people are facing, the Maranaosare proud to have preserved theirs. Age or seniority is still practiced in this side of the country. Young ones are always bound to submit themselves to the older ones, without any condition, when it comes to decision making. This sense of seniority ties Maranaofamilies strong and intact. In fact, the unity within every Maranaofamily is shown how each family share both glories and failures.


are the symbolic authority in Maranaocommunity, their significance is through mediation in preserving peace and order from social disruption, this practice has been observed from the time of pre-colonial era and is resiliently effective up to now. These brought emphasis on fighting for customary preservation in the Moro community, including territorial rights, all to remain entrenched to what has made them noble.

Sense of Seniority

Age of Seniority has been one of the key factor in sustaining order in the Maranaocommunity. It is a living tradition to obey the wishes of the elders, they are consulted in matters concerning the welfare of the family and relatives. Although social structure is changing in some places in the country this sense of customary values is the principle of which must not be taken for granted. Testimony of this ideals is the practice of arranged marriage, the manifestation behind this is to protect the Maranaoway of life.


The people of Lanaodel Sur is predominantly populated by Maranaos. Maranaois one of the thirteen (13) Muslim ethno-linguistic groups of Mindanao and Palawan. Literally it means “people of the lake.” Maranaoshave lived and worked around Lake Lanaofor centuries. As of May 2010, the population of Lanaodel Sur was recorded at 933,260 (2.3 annual growth) of which 98.2% Maranaos, 1% Cebuanosand 0.8% Ilongos.