In Southern Luzon, the highest forested peak is Mount Isarog, an active volcano reaching 2,011 meters tall.

It stands out as a broad and isolated volcano with a distinctive breached crater. The rim of this crater stretches an impressive 2.5 kilometers wide. Numerous rivers and streams snake down the volcano’s slopes, with the Quinarag River or Cabongaan River being the most notable.

Despite its long period of dormancy, Mount Isarog is still classified as an active volcano. Its last eruption occurred around 2,374 BCE. Evidence of ongoing geothermal activity can be found in the presence of fumaroles and hot springs scattered around the mountain.

It is considered sacred by the indigenous people of the Bicol region. They believe that the mountain is the home of spirits and deities. The main ethnic group living around Mount Isarog is the Isarog Agta. They’re one of the original groups in the Philippines.

Mount Isarog’s rich biodiversity creates a haven for nature enthusiasts. The mountain boasts four distinct natural habitats, each offering a unique experience. The lowland forest is a towering realm with trees reaching up to 60 meters, dominated by the Dipterocarp family. As you climb, the temperature cools and the lower montane forest unfolds, teeming with diverse plant and animal life. Higher still, the upper montane forest emerges, a mystical landscape of mossy trees stunted by strong winds. This harsh environment is a refuge for many endemic species found nowhere else on Earth.

Teeming with life thanks to its diverse habitats, Mount Isarog is a haven for a remarkable variety of creatures. Over 143 species of birds call the mountain home, with 15 of them being unique to the island of Luzon. One such special resident is a sub-species of the Velvet-fronted Nuthatch, found nowhere else on Earth but Mount Isarog itself. The animals side of the biodiversity spectrum is equally impressive, with species like the Mount Isarog Shrew Mouse, Mount Isarog Forest Skink, and the Isolated Forest Frog all thriving in this ecological wonderland.

Adventure awaits at Mount Isarog! Hikers can choose from several trails, with the Panicuason trail being the most popular. This challenging trek winds through breathtaking mossy forests for 8-10 hours, rewarding you with stunning views from the summit. For those seeking a rest amidst nature, six campsites are scattered at various elevations along the trails. Mount Isarog is also a paradise for waterfall enthusiasts. Malabsay Falls, Nahulugang Busog Falls, Harubay Falls and Maalsom Falls are just a few of the many cascading beauties waiting to be discovered. Birdwatchers will be in awe of the mountain’s diverse avian life, with over 143 species to spot, including 15 found nowhere else on Luzon. To truly immerse yourself in the region, visit nearby towns and villages to experience the rich culture and traditions of the Bicol people.

Mount Isarog Location

Rather than being confined to a single municipality, Mount Isarog reigns over the heart of Camarines Sur province in the Bicol Region. The mountain’s peak is a unique landmark, where the borders of six municipalities (Goa, Tigaon, Ocampo, Pili, Tinambac, and Calabanga) and one major city, Naga (considered the economic center of the Bicol Region), all converge.

Mount Isarog Location Map

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Additional Information

Read more about the volcanoes in the Philippines and the Camarines Sur Province. Check out the links below to discover more!

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