Catbalogan City is the capital of Samar Province. It is Samar's main commercial, trading, educational, political and financial center. It is also an important and major seaport serving inter-island vessels. Catbalogan City's central geographical location in Eastern Visayas makes it ideal as the gateway to the region's three Samar provinces.
Catbalogan is a new city featuring high-potential eco-tourism that are almost untouched and unexplored. Its eco-tourism edge earned its role in the growth of tourism in the Philippines. This tourist attractions are now available to everyone who wants to visit the province.
Notable Attractions / Landmarks
- St. Bartholomew Roman Catholic Church - The Church of St. Bartholomew, the Apostle, was built prior to 1760. The church did not assume its present form until 1814, when Father Felix Carreon, OFM, set out to repair the church following its initial burning in 1760. Father Martin de Yepes constructed the altars and also had a colonnade of wooden posts raised, thus dividing the nave into three sections. The facade used Ionic columns for its articulation. In 1835, the church burnt a second time but was rebuilt by the Franciscans. The old meter-high image of the patron saint, St. Bartholomew, is presently kept in the rectory. Behind the church are remains of the quadrilateral fort traced to Jesuit times.
- The Rizal Monument at Catbalogan City Plaza - In front of the Catbalogan City Hall, there’s a small park with a bust of Jose Rizal, his two novels Noli Me Tangere and El Filibusterismo serving as the base. Holding up the books with the bust are three muscular men who are all naked except for a leaf that covers their private parts. The three naked men are carrying the books and the bust—it simply shows that ours is a continuing burden to reform the social system, to pave the way for a better life for Filipinos. And the naked men interpreted as "naked in the sense that we are all equal," it cannot be denied that this unique Rizal monument in Catbalogan can be a tourist attraction. The sculptor is Miguel Alcazar, a native of Catbalogan. He studied at the University of the Philippines College of Fine Arts, and he made the Rizal monument in 1959, before his family migrated to the United States. He died in New York in October 1980. (Texts taken from a GMA News Online post by J.I.E. TEODORO)
- Pieta Park - Located adjacent to St. Bartholomew Church and St. Mary's College of Catbalogan, it has a memorial honoring Catbaloganons and four thousand-plus others who perished in the December 1987 tragic collision of the passenger ship MV Doña Paz and the oil tanker MT Vector. Historians describe the Doña Paz tragedy not only as the world's worst ferry disaster but also the worst peace-time maritime disaster in history.
- The Obelisk - located in the heart of Catbalogan City's Samar Provincial Capitol Park, it depicts four major events in Samar's history - the 1901 Balangiga Encounter that saw local revolutionaries inflicting the "worst single defeat" of the Americans during the Philippine-American War (1899–1902); the 1649 Agustin Sumoroy Rebellion in Palapag against the Spaniards; the October 15, 1596 arrival of the first Jesuit missionaries to Samar; and Queen Isabella II of Spain carrying a Royal Decree of August 11, 1841 declaring Samar as an independent province.
- Buri Baras Cove Beach Resort - Located on Buri Island, it is 12 km from the city proper. The beach has a long coastal stretch and is ideal for swimming and diving.
- Bangon Falls - located in Barangay Bangon in the interior mountains of Catbalogan City.
- Basiao Island Beach
- Cal-apog Leopard Beach Resort - a rocky beach located in Sitio Calapog, Barangay Bunuanan.
- "Campo" Historical Landmark
- Igot Cove
- Malatugawi Island Beach
- Payao Beach
- Samar Provincial Capitol
- Sunshine Beach - a prominent beach located in Barangay Guinsorongan.
- Waray Banwa Coral Reef - located just 2 km off Guinsorongan (Sunshine) Beach.
- Bay View Inn
Address: Brgy. Mercedes, Catbalogan City
- Casa Cristina Hotel
Address: Brgy. 11, San Roque St., Catbalogan City
- Fame Hotel
Address: 6th St. Brgy. Muñoz, Catbalogan City
- Maqueda Bay Hotel
Address: Brgy. 03, Tomaletis Area, Catbalogan City
- Rolet Hotel
Address: Brgy. 03 Mabini Ave., Catbalogan City
- Traveler's Lodging House
Address: Brgy. 04 Rizal Ave., Catbalogan City
Catbalogan City can be reached from Manila or Tacloban City by land, air or sea.
Currently, no commercial flights to Catbalogan City are available. However, the Catbalogan City airport Catbalogan Airport on Buri Island is accessible to private and charter jets from Manila and elsewhere.
The Port of Catbalogan (Piers I and II) is classified as a national port that can handle passengers and cargoes to and from Manila, Cebu and other places.
Bus transit is the dominant public land transport to Catbalogan City from Manila or Tacloban City passing through the Pan-Philippine Highway (Maharlika Highway).