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Philippines

Philippines

Capital

Manila

Language

Filipino

Population

103,780,000 (2011)

National Flower

Sampaguita

Religion

Roman Catholic (80%)

Currency

Pesos

Location

The east is adjacent to the Pacific Ocean, the southwest to South China See, the south to Celebes sea and Sulu sea and the north to Bashi Channel. It is composed of 7017 islands and divided into 3 groups: Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. The island of the northern end is only 52.8 kilometers away from the south end of Taiwan.

History

The major race in Philippines is Malaysian, immigrated successively into Philippines about 500 BC to 1500.

In 1521, after the Portuguese Magellan led Spanish expedition to land in Cebu, the Spanish King Philip II named it as Philippines after his own name. Spanish occupied it in 1565 and established a colonial government in Philippines in 1571.

The 330 years of colonial rule began. In 1890s, the anti-Spanish emotions had risen among Filipinos till 1898 the “America Spain War” broke out, Spain was defeated and signed “Paris Peace Treaty”, then Philippines was ruled by United States for about 50 years. Japan occupied the Philippines after the outbreak of Second World War.

It was restored in 1945. On July 4th 1946,
Philippines gained formally independence and implemented American-style constitutional democracy.

Major
Festivals

1. New Year

January 1st has the same atmosphere with western new year. It is a time for family gathering and setting off firecrackers to get rid of old and welcome the new.

2. Black Nazarene Procession
The biggest parade of Philippines is held on 9th January.

3. Ati-Atihan
The third weekend of January is the most important festival in Philippines. Millions of people have a spree in fancy dresses, drinking and dancing.

4. Easter
The activities begin from the previous Sunday before Easter. The Thursday is Maundy, from this day on, all the business and activities stop (including airlines), following by Good Friday till the Easter Sunday, business restarts again. In the morning of Easter Sunday, the grand parade is held for Mother of God and son of God ascended to heaven.

5. Caraboa Festival
Caraboa festival (Harvest festival) is celebrated on May 14th and 15th. The protagonist of the celebrations is Saturn: San Isidra. In the first afternoon of the festival, colorfully dressed caraboas are gathered in the church square to pray for the abundant harvest. There is a kind of rice cracker called kiping serving for the guests after the festival.


Sources: Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Republic of ChinaTaiwan New Immigrants Growth and Care Association