“Dumaguete” was coined from the Cebuano word dagit, which means “to snatch”. The word dumaguet, meaning “to swoop”, was coined because of frequent raids by Moro pirates on this coastal community and its power to attract and keep visitors, both local and foreign. In 1572, Diego López Povedano indicated the place as Dananguet, but cartographer Pedro Murillo Velarde in 1734 already used present name of Dumaguete for the settlement.
Dumaguete, officially City of Dumaguete (Cebuano: Dakbayan sa Dumaguete; Hiligaynon: Dakbanwa/Syudad sang Dumaguete; Filipino: Lungsod ng Dumaguete) and often referred to as Dumaguete City, is a component city in the Philippines. It is the capital of the province of Negros Oriental. Having a total of 131,377 inhabitants as of 2015 census, it is the most populous city in the province. The city is nicknamed The City of Gentle People.
Dumaguete is referred to as a university city because of the presence of four universities and a number of other colleges where students of the province converge to enroll for tertiary education. The city is also a popular educational destination for students of surrounding provinces and cities in Visayas and Mindanao. The city is best known for Silliman University, the country’s first Protestant university and the first American university in Asia. There are also 18 public elementary schools and 8 public high schools. The city’s student population is estimated at 30,000.
Dumaguete attracts a considerable number of foreign tourists, particularly Europeans, because of easy access from Cebu City in Central Visayas, the availability of beach resorts and dive sites, the attraction of dolphin and whale watching in nearby Bais City. Dumaguete is listed 5th in Forbes Magazine’s “7 Best Places to Retire Around the World”.
The power source of the city comes from the geothermal power plant in Palinpinon, Valencia. The city has redundant fiber optic lines and is a focal point for telecommunications. It is the landing point for fiber optic cables linking it to the whole Visayas, Manila (the capital of the nation) and cities south of Luzon, as well as to other cities north of Mindanao.
Geography And Climate
Dumaguete has a land area of 3,362 hectares (8,310 acres), situated on the plains of the southeastern coast of the large island of Negros, near the mouth of the Banica River. Of the province’s 19 municipalities/towns and 6 cities, Dumaguete is the smallest in terms of land area. It is bounded on the north by the town of Sibulan, on the south by the town of Bacong and on the west by the town of Valencia.
As a coastal city, it is bounded on the east by the Bohol Sea and the Tañon Strait, serving as a natural border of southeastern Negros Island Region to the neighboring Central Visayas. The city’s topography is generally flat from two to six kilometers from the shoreline. It slopes gently upwards to the adjoining municipality of Valencia. The highest ground elevation is located at the boundary of the municipality of Valencia, about one hundred meters above mean sea level. About 93% of the land have slopes of less than 3%. The remaining areas have 3% to 5% slope.