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Cortes is a fourth class municipality in the province of Surigao del Sur, Philippines. According to the 2015 census, it has a population of 15,912 people.[3]

Municipality of Cortes
Official seal of Cortes
Map of Surigao del Sur with Cortes highlighted
Map of Surigao del Sur with Cortes highlighted
Cortes is located in Philippines
Location within the Philippines
Coordinates: 9°14′N 126°10′E / 9.23°N 126.17°E / 9.23; 126.17Coordinates: 9°14′N 126°10′E / 9.23°N 126.17°E / 9.23; 126.17
Country Philippines
RegionCaraga (Region XIII)
ProvinceSurigao del Sur
District1st District
FoundedOctober 1, 1953
Barangays12 (see Barangays)
 • TypeSangguniang Bayan
 • MayorJosie M. Bonifacio
 • Vice MayorDennis H. Yu
 • CongressmanProspero A. Pichay Jr.
 • Electorate11,803 voters (2016)
 • Total127.08 km2 (49.07 sq mi)
 (2015 census)[3]
 • Total15,912
 • Density130/km2 (320/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+8 (PST)
ZIP code
IDD:area code+63 (0)86
Climate typetropical rainforest climate
Income class4th municipal income class
Revenue (₱)65.7 million  (2016)
Native languagesSurigaonon
Agusan language

Cortes faces the Philippine Sea on the eastern part. It has a protected marine sanctuary located in barangay Balibadon, Capandan, Mabahin, Poblacion, Tigao, Uba and Tag-anongan. It is known in the province of Surigao del Sur for its rich source of sea foods in the area. You can find different kinds of fish, crabs, etc. It has beaches with white sands and water falls. It also has a bird sanctuary located in barangay Burgos. It also has a wide area for agriculture. It has two season, rainy and sunny.


Cortes was originally known as "Kagyunod". It cannot be traced who changed Kagyunod into Cortes but many believed that Cortes derived its name after Governor General Cortes who was assigned to the Philippines by the Spanish King.

Cortes was once part of Tandag. It gained its independence on October 1, 1953 by virtue of Executive Order No. 642 series of 1953 creating Cortes into an independent municipal or corporation. It was not until March 19, 1954, however, that the new local government unit formally started to function with the assumption into office of the first set of municipal officials appointed by then President Elpidio R. Quirino.


Cortes lies between 9 deg. 08'00 N to 9 deg. 19'00 North latitude and 126 deg. 03'00 to 126 deg. 13'00 East longitude or lies in the mid-eastern portion of Surigao del Sur along the Pacific Coast. It is 28 kilometers from Tandag, the capital of the province. Cortes is bounded on the east by the vast Pacific Ocean, on the north by the Municipality of Lanuza and Lanuza Bay, on the south by the municipality of Tandag, and on the west by the municipalities of Lanuza and Tandag.

Cortes has a land area of 13,509.00 hectares. It comprises 12 barangays with Balibadon and Tag-anongan as the biggest and smallest barangays respectively.

Cortes has numerous rolling hills and uneven distribution of lowlands. Mabahin, Tigao and Burgos have a large area of rice and swamplands, the rest of the barangays are gerenally hilly. The south-western portion of the town is gerenally mountainous and covered with second growth forest.


Cortes is politically subdivided into 12 barangays. In 1955, the sitios of Uba, Mabahin, Tag-anongan and Manlico were converted into barrios.[4]

  • Balibadon
  • Burgos
  • Capandan
  • Mabahin
  • Madrelino
  • Manlico
  • Matho
  • Poblacion
  • Tag-anongan
  • Tigao
  • Tuboran
  • Uba


YearPop.±% p.a.
1903 1,213—    
1960 8,342+3.44%
1970 9,428+1.23%
1975 10,871+2.90%
1980 12,338+2.56%
1990 13,234+0.70%
1995 13,054−0.26%
2000 14,825+2.76%
2007 15,913+0.98%
2010 15,541−0.86%
2015 15,912+0.45%
Source: Philippine Statistics Authority[3][5][6][7]


Agriculture is the major source of living in Cortes. It is also known for its rich source of sea foods. Fishing is one source of living. However, there are limitations that been lay down by the local government to protect their sea against abuse. Farming is the second source of living.


1. Laswitan Lagoon

2. Bakwitan Cave

3. Lubcon Falls

4. Bugsay Beach Resort

5. Sihagan Beach

6. Buybuyan Beach


Kadagatan Festival - Every 21st to 24th day of July, the town of Cortes celebrates Kadagatan Festival. This festival is celebrated because of the abundance of fishes and other seafoods that Cortes have. The Rabita Statue symbolize this festival. You can see the statue in Cortes Commercial Triangle.

Araw ng Cortes - Every 29th day of September up to 1st day of October, Cortes celebrates Araw ng Cortes. This is because Cortes have its freedom from being separated from Tandag City.


  1. ^ "Municipality". Quezon City, Philippines: Department of the Interior and Local Government. Retrieved 31 May 2013.
  2. ^ "Province: Surigao del Sur". PSGC Interactive. Quezon City, Philippines: Philippine Statistics Authority. Retrieved 12 November 2016.
  3. ^ a b c Census of Population (2015). "Caraga". Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay. PSA. Retrieved 20 June 2016.
  4. ^ "An Act to Create the Barrios of Uba, Mabahin, Tag-anongan and Manlico, in the Municipality of Cortes, Province of Surigao". Retrieved 2011-04-12.
  5. ^ Census of Population and Housing (2010). "Caraga". Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay. NSO. Retrieved 29 June 2016.
  6. ^ Censuses of Population (1903–2007). "Caraga". Table 1. Population Enumerated in Various Censuses by Province/Highly Urbanized City: 1903 to 2007. NSO.
  7. ^ "Province of Surigao del Sur". Municipality Population Data. Local Water Utilities Administration Research Division. Retrieved 17 December 2016.

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