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Santiago City

Santiago City is located in the southern part of the province of Isabela, along Maharlika Highway, between the municipalities of Cordon and Echague.

It is about 79 kilometers south of Ilagan, the capital of Isabela, and 328 kilometers from Metro Manila. It is situated between 16deg35'N to 16deg47'30" N and 121deg25'E to 121deg37'E. It is surrounded by the municipalities of Cordon (west), Ramon (northwest), San Isidro (north), Echague (north), and by Quirino province (south). The topography of the city varies only slightly, 80% being nearly flat, 17% being moderately rolling, and 3% steeply undulating and rolling, towards the southern end of the city

Before the Spanish regime, the place was known as "Carig", which means "tall straight trees". The first native settlement in the area was established by the Ybanags and Gaddangs along the banks of the Carig River, presently known as Diadi River. In January, 1910, Carig was made into a municipality, separate from Echague. I was also given a new name, Santiago, after St. James the Apostle, the patron saint of the town. For 84 long years, it remained a municipality. It was only in May 5, 1994, under the leadership of Mayor Jose "Pempe" Miranda, that the town of Santiago finally became a city.

From a primitive settlement, Santiago has indeed grown into urbanism. This is manifested by the magnificent city hall, constructed at the turn of the millenium, that comfortably houses the local government offices. The commercial area of city, located along Maharlika Highway, also shows rapid growth. Its public market, known as "Bagong Palengke", is the site of the wet and dry markets, shoe stores, boutiques, fast food stores, grocery and department stores. Educational institutions are also present in Santiago city, from primary schools to tertiary schools, such as the Northeastern College at the poblacion and La salette College at Dubinan.

At the southern end of the city lie the hills of Balintocatoc, the highest point in the whole city, at 173m above sea level. This is the home of SCATEC, an ecology park established by the city to promote agro-tourism. Balintocatoc is also famous for its "Holy Hill", where the Shrine of Our Lady of La Salette stands. Statues of different saints depicting Biblical scenes are situated along the winding road to the hilltop. A chapel crowns the hill, a perfect venue for those who seek a peaceful and solemn meditation and worshipping.




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