Iloilo (Hiligaynon: Kapuoran sang Iloilo; Kinaray-a: Kapuoran kang Iloilo; Tagalog: Lalawigan ng Iloilo) is a province located in the region of Western Visayas in the Philippines. Iloilo occupies a major southeast portion of the Visayan island of Panay and is bordered by the province of Antique to the west, Capiz to the north, the Jintotolo Channel to the northeast, the Guimaras Strait to the east, and the Iloilo Strait and Panay Gulf to the southwest. Just off Iloilo's southeast coast is the island province of Guimaras, once part of Iloilo but now an independent province. Across the Panay Gulf and Guimaras Strait is Negros Occidental, occupying the northwestern half of the larger island of Negros. Iloilo's capital is Iloilo City, though the city itself is independent and not governed by the provincial government itself. According to the 2015 census, the population of the province (excluding Iloilo City) is 1,936,423. If Iloilo City is included, the population is 2,361,042 in total. Iloilo is Catholic predominated province comprising about 60% of the population. Protestant churches also exist such as members of Iglesia Filipina Independiente or Aglipayan Church with 35% of the population, Baptist, Presbyterian, Methodist, Adventist, and other Evangelical Christians; There are also non Protestant and other Christian sects such as Iglesia Ni Cristo, Church of Christ of Latter day Saints (Mormon) and Jehovah's Witnesses while non Christians are usually represented by Muslims, and to a lesser extent, Buddhists and Hindus. Spanish architecture can be seen in old buildings in downtown Iloilo. Ancient Indonesians, Malaysians and Vietnamese, and later the Indian, Arab, Chinese, Korean and Japanese merchants were already trading with the Ilonggos, long before the arrival of the Mexicans, Spaniards and other Europeans. The ruling Spanish government encouraged these foreign merchants to trade in Iloilo, but they were not given privileges like ownership of land. Foreign merchants and Spaniards intermarried with the locals, and the Mestizo class was eventually born from their union. The Mestizo offsprings of the local nobilities later emerged as the ruling class of the Ilonggos. The town's fiesta is one of the most important events for Ilonggos. Almost every town in Iloilo has a fiesta and festival celebrated annually. Iloilo is also home to two of the nation's cultural minorities the Sulod-Bukidnon and the Ati.
The Philippines are most prevalent during the dry season, between November and April. At this time the country is fully accessible, including its many beautiful islands and more remote areas. Temperatures are high during March and April, so it's best to travel during the cooler months of December to February. The wet season falls between May and October, but the rain isn't constant and rarely impacts on travel plans. You'll still enjoy hot, sunny days at this time, fewer crowds and lush, green scenery. The shoulder months of May and November can represent good value for money – you'll miss the crowds, the weather's still pleasant and flights will be cheaper than during the high season. The weather can be unpredictable in the Philippines, and typhoons can sometimes occur as early as August or as late as January.
Ozamiz International Airport (OZC) - is an airport serving the general area of the city of Ozamiz in the Philippines. It is the only airport in the province of Misamis Occidental. The airport is classified as a community airport by the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines, a body of the Department of Transportation that is responsible for the operations of not only this airport but also of all other airports in the Philippines except the major international airports. It is one of only two community airports in the Philippines with commercial operations, but one of the busiest in Mindanao in terms of flights and passenger traffic. The airport takes its name from its location, the barangay of Labo in Ozamiz. Ozamiz-Labo Airport also serves the cities of Oroquieta and Tangub, some municipalities of Zamboanga del Sur, Lanao del Norte and some parts of Lanao del Sur.
Iloilo Airport (MNL) - You will depart from Manila Airport (MNL) and will land at the Iloilo Airport (ILO). The flight takes around 1 hour and 10 minutes. The fare starts from PHP 1929.00 nonstop. There are few Airlines to choose from. They are Cebu Pacific, Philippines Airlines and AirAsia Airlines.
As part of the Philippine archipelago, Iloilo shares the humidity and two seasons of the country. It is common sense to travel to a city's dry season to explore all its best locations without worrying about the rain, but Iloilo is pretty much a year-round destination. The driest months and therefore, the best time to visit Iloilo is from January to June. December is also an excellent time to visit, but you can expect high rates from hotels during this month. If you want to visit Iloilo during its low season, August is the best time to do so, though you should expect plenty of rain. The warmest months, on the other hand, are April to June. Whatever month you decide to visit. Make sure to have sunscreen with you as the heat of the sun is different in tropical and Asian countries like the Philippines. Stay hydrated at all times, too!
Iloilo has some very humid months, and above-average humidity throughout the year. The least humid month is April (67.7% relative humidity), and the most humid month is January (76.2%). Wind in Iloilo is usually calm. The windiest month is January, followed by February and March. January's average wind speed of around 5.4 knots (6.2 MPH or 10 KPH) is considered "a light breeze." Maximum sustained winds (the highest speed for the day lasting more than a few moments) are at their highest in late January where average top sustained speeds reach 9.4 knots, which is considered a gentle breeze.
Humidity and temperatures combine to make this season feel warm. Highs range from 93.1°F (33.9°C) and 88.5°F (31.4°C) with similar temperatures in the later months. Rain is somewhat common with 4 to 9 days of significant precipitation per month. Spring (March through May) is the busiest for tourism, which makes it a good time for those looking for things to do. The middle-year months have very comfortable weather with high temperatures that are quite warm. These months see moderate precipitation with 11 to 14 days of precipitation per month. June – August is the slowest season for tourism in Iloilo, so lodging and other accommodations may cost less than usual.
There are a few festivals that you should not miss when you are in Iloilo. In January, catch The Dinagyang Festival is a religious and cultural festival in Iloilo City, Philippines held on the 4th Sunday of January, or right after the Sinulog in Cebu and the Ati-Atihan Festival in Kalibo, Aklan. In February, there will be Paraw Regatta Festival where it Culminates on Sunday with a race among seafarers on colorful sailboats called Paraws in the straits between Guimaras Island and the city of Iloilo.
Another vibrant festival takes place at the 4th District of Iloilo. Specifically, Passi City is the Pintados de Pasi Festival. Tourists from different places annually visit and celebrate this tattoo festival to see festive dancers inked their bodies as they dance along with the beat of drums, plastic pipes and handcrafted bamboos. The event highlights the tribal dance competition, which showcases tattooed dancers with their colorful costumes and powerful movements. Tattoos are signs of cultural identities. Long ago, it is believed that you cannot just attain a tattoo. You must accomplish a specific task first. This celebratory occasion serves as the continuance of the tattoo tradition in Panay. In short, Iloilo lets you experience not just a mere festival but celebratory happiness.