When the fertile flat lands and rich fishing grounds were reported to the Spanish colonizers after they arrived in the Philippines, an expedition headed by a Spanish engineer was sent to the area to get its name and pinpoint its exact location, as well as prepare a map of the island. They happened to enter the mouth of the river in the area and saw some people gathering the abundant fresh water eel locally called “bais” that were caught in their fish traps.
Upon seeing the fishermen, the Spaniard asked in his native tongue, “Como se llama este lugar?” (What is the name of this place?). Failing to understand the engineer of the course, and thinking that he was asking for the name of the fish caught, the fisherman answered curtly, “Bais”. The Spaniard therefore recorded the name “Bais” as the name of the place.
Population/ Language/ Area
As of 2010, Bais City recorded a total population of 74,722. These natives speak Bisaya as their native language. There are however, little Hiligaynon words being spoken by some of the people.
Total land area is 319.64 km2 (123.41 sq mi).
The city offers opportunities in food processing especially sugar-based foods, meat and fish processing. The manufacture of furniture, clothing and fashion accessories, jewelry, personal care and other consumer goods are encouraged. The establishment of commercial complexes and tourist facilities are welcomed in this city.
Festivals and Services
- Sipong Festival – a colorful and lively mardi gras festival participated in by the different barangays, local and national offices in a choreographed street dancing. Magnificent floats and spectacular head dresses can also be viewed during this event. This biggest annual merry making marks the Charter Day celebration of Bais City.