An eco-tourism sanctuary in the hinterlands of Lanao


Situated in the hinterlands of Lanao del Norte is a town gifted with fertile soil. It is rich in natural resources including lakes teeming with aquatic trove and a mountain abundant in flora and fauna.

Divided into 25 barangays, the third-class municipality of Nunungan is the oldest and largest town of the province in terms of area, covering 473.28 square kilometers or 182.73 square miles.

The barangay communities are comprised of Abaga, Bangco, Canibongan, Karcum, Dimayon, Inayawan, Kaludan, Kalubuan, Cabasaran, (Laya) Liangan, Lupitan, Mangan, Malaig, Masibay, Poblacion, Notongan, Putadun (Nunungan proper), Panganapan, Pantar, Paridi, Rarab, Raraban, Rebucon, Songgod and Taraka.
Central to the locality is the majestic Mount Inayawan, rising 1,535 meters or 5,036 feet above sea level.

On July 30, 2007, President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo signed Proclamation 1344 designating the Mount Inayawan Range Natural Park as a protected realm, covering a total land area of 3,986 hectares – 3,120 of which are protected with a buffer zone of 866 hectares.

Lake Nunungan supplies the water needs of the Kapatagan Valley

A critical watershed territory, the park hosts the remaining largest rainforest in the province. Its three lakes—Lake Pantar, Lake Songgod and Lake Malaig —supplying the water needs of the Kapatagan Valley. It is further home to endemic rare and endangered species like the Mindanao flying squirrel, Philippine eagle, Philippine deer, Mindanao cops owl, Mindanao hornbill, white collared kingfisher and the Philippine warty pig.

Located 115 kilometers southwest of Iligan City near the border with the province of Lanao del Sur and 14 kilometers north from Magapu Point and Illana Bay of the Moro Gulf, nature lovers and mountaineers tout Mount Inayawan as a splendid milieu for adventure hikes and regular climbs.

Dump trucks and four-wheel drive vehicles —which are not frequent to come by—have been the only means of transportation available to traverse the 15-kilometer road to and from the inland town.

When road projects are completed, agricultural products—including strawberries and vegetables like those cultivated in Baguio —from the arable land of Nunungan will reach the market and supply the needs of neighboring places in the region, possibly even as far as the Visayas.

Nunungan’s soil quality and climate is comparable to La Trinidad, Benguet – perfect to cultivate strawberries and other Baguio-grown vegetables

Serving the town for this term with Mayor Marcos Mamay is Vice Mayor Jun Cawasa who also ran as independent in the 2016 elections. The Sangguniang Bayan is comprised of Councilors Hadji-Akiel Mamantuc, Lasaro Alamada, Jamil Watamama, Sira Dampa, Samanodin Macatanong, Nas-Rah Manamparan, Ackiel Dimasangcay and Somirado Maruhom.

Nunungan celebrates its founding anniversary every June 30 with the Kalilang Festival, which highlights the indigenous Maranao culture where native food and delicacies are prepared and the streets adorned with colorful bunting and flags. The highlight of the celebration is the kolintang orchestra showdown – where mostly groups of women play a set of small gongs varying in sizes accompanied by agong, debakan and babendir for synchronization.


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