Distance from Bacolod: 114.5 kilometers
Land Area: 12,340.00 hectares
Classification: 4th Class
No. of Barangays: 9 Barangays
Population: 40,712 (May 1, 2000) – 43,065 (2005 Projection)
Language: Hiligaynon/Ilonggo/English is spoken & understood
Toboso traces its roots many years before the Spanish regime. The original settlement of the place was near Sag-ahan River and the community was popularly known by the same name. Sag-ahan means in the local dialect “to take out or catch fish with the use of hands” because fish abound in the area.
When the Spaniards came, the community was named Toboso in honor of a similar community in Spain, La Villa del Toboso. During this time, Toboso was a barrio of Escalante, but it did not prevent the community from expanding with the coming in of more immigrants from Cebu Island who extensively developed fishing, agriculture and commerce.
In the early years of American rule, more impetus was created with the establishment of Central Azucarera del Danao at Labi-Labi, approximately six kilometers from the poblacion. The new sugar mill spawned the development of the sugar industry in the area.
Toboso separated from Escalante and acquired its township status on July 1, 1948 by virtue of Executive Order No. 141, series of 1948 issued by then Pres. Elpidio Quirino with Albino Uy de la Cruz, Sr. as its first municipal mayor.
How to get there
Toboso can be reached in about three hours and 15 minutes by public utility vehicles and approximately two hours and 45 minutes by private car via the coastal highway. Aircon and non-aircon buses plying the northern Negros route pass through this area in several trips daily.
Toboso is bounded on the southwest by the Municipality of Calatrava, northwest by the City of Sagay, north by the Municipality of Escalante, and east by Tanon Strait.
Places of Interest
Kevin’s Reef is found at the off shore area of the seaside town of Toboso in the eastern side of Negros Island. It has an area of about 80 hectares submerged to about two fathoms deep and can be reached in 10 minutes by motorized boat.
Mainit Hot Spring. The hot spring is found in Brgy. San Isidro, about 12 kilometers from the town proper.
Kampanoy Cave is found at Brgy. Luna, some five kilometers from the town proper. Its spacious interior resembles a large dome cathedral.
Dalisun Falls. This magnificent waterfall found at Sitio Vergara in Brgy. Bug-ang, cascades from a height of 250 feet. Treasures believed to be that of the Japanese were reportedly found at the top of the falls.
Trangkalan Cave situated in Brgy. Magticol is believed to be the sanctuary of subversive elements during the early mid-eighties.
Sag-ahan Festival in its search for cultural and tourism identity, named its festival “THE SAG-AHAN FESTIVAL” to manifest its joy and sense of thanksgiving and gratefulness for all the blessings and abundance it has received through the years. Sag-ahan is derived from the original name of the settlement near the Sag-ahan River many years ago In the local dialect “sag-ahan” means to take or catch fish with the hands, This method of fishing was popularly used due to the abundance of fish in the area.
Fishermen use traditional methods of fishing as hook and line, drop or drip nets or crew of large and new methods, the Kobkob or purse seine which venture farther to greater depths
The humble families find comforting moments when low tide occurs at night. So they could fish in the shallow beaches, using gas lamps bolos and spear. These simple methods greatly supplement their daily food requirements when other sophisticated methods fail to bring in a good catch. Often times these poor man’s method goes a little further to supplement family finances for food, clothing and educational needs of their children. The housewife vends or market what ever the husband’s caught in order to augment family income.
The life of a fishermen is not a cheerful one, the terrific heat or cold that beat upon his body when out to sea the sudden storm and gust of wind when far out to sea and the heart breaking misfortune of having no catch at all.
These are but part of the harrowing part life of a fisherman. Nevertheless, the fisherman of Toboso , despite his struggle for daily existence have always endeavored to find time for socio-cultural and religious activities by celebrating in its own humble way, its annual feast of thanksgiving and gratefulness to the Lord for all the blessing of abundance he has received trough the years. Sag-ahan is a reenactment of the lives of the fisherfolk of Toboso.