Sultan Kudarat, a Philippine Province, a hero, and a Sultan of Maguindanao.
The name ‘Sultan Kudarat‘ rings a bell because I love history since my elementary years. I still remember that I was one of the finalists in a History Quiz Bee during 5th grade. Anyway, I wanted to share my little knowledge about Sultan Kudarat, first as a hero and then as a Philippines province.
I write this to encourage readers to re-read Philippine history in light of Mindanao and also visit Sultan Kudarat Province which is just 2 hours away from General Santos City.
Sultan Kudarat of The Sultanate of Maguindanao.
Muhammad Dipatuan Kudarat (also spelled Qudarat or Corallat) succeeded his father Kapitan Laut Buisan in 1619 as a 7th Sultan of Maguindanao. He reigned to almost all of Mindanao from January of 1625 to 1671, including what we now know as Cagayan de Oro City (CDO) and the CARAGA Region- Agusan del Norte and Sur, Surigao del Norte and Sur and Dinagat Province. Misamis and Bukidnon were among his tributaries, meaning these two provinces pay dues to his kingdom.
His kingdom was one of the greatest in the history of Maguindanao Sultanate. He has friendly trading relations with the Spaniards and the Dutch. There was also a time when Spaniards tried conquering some of Sultan Kudarat’s subject but was unsuccessful, making them suffer the consequences of paying a huge amount of ransom to get their soldiers. Governor General Diego Fajardo Chacon made a treaty on June 25, 1645 with him so they can send missionaries and build a church in Mindanao.
The last known battle he did was when they raided the town of Baybay, Leyte. That was too far-fetched but not for someone named Sultan Kudarat as his power was felt even in the Visayas, Leyte to be exact.
A note under his huge monument in front of the Sultan Kudarat Capitol says this:
My friend Wiki says, “He was a virtuous leader who embodied the idea of basic unity, oneness and freedom among the diverse people scattered throughout its Sultanate. For this reason, he was considered as one of the National heroes of our country and for his honour this province was named after him.”
The Province of Sultan Kudarat.
Sultan Kudarat is a province belonging to Region 12 or SOCCSKSARGEN. Isulan is its capital, Tacurong its only city and has 11 municipalities. Although I have been to this province twice, I haven’t really explored this yet except for photographing their spectacular Provincial Capitol.
The Provincial Capitol of Sultan Kudarat is one of the most magnificent capitols I have seen while traveling around the Philippines. The golden dome at the center combined with the arcs define the beauty and simplicity of Indo-Islamic architecture. The white theme also makes the viewer think of paradise. I hope I’m right in branding this masterpiece under the Indo-Islamic architecture and not under Indonesian-Malay which characterizes of multi-tire roof like the Thai temples. What put me off was the big “constructed under the administration of Gov and Cong. Mangundadatu ek ek” under the embossed “Provincial Capitol of Sultan Kudarat.”
Also, I heard that there is a really nice and pristine white sand beach in Kalamansig. Kalamansig is facing the Sulu Sea and is one of my dream destination. You can check the Sultan Kudarat map on the end of this post.
I also heard of the Lagbasan Cave in Brgy. Kuden, Sen. Ninoy Aquino, Sultan Kudarat. The cave is said to be a world-class cave by spelunking specialist Glen Malliet from the United States Speleological Society.
I believe Sultan Kudarat has so much more to offer the intrepid travelers. I hope that they would create avenues where travelers and bloggers can promote the raw beauty of their province.
Oh before I forgot, I’m thankful to the helpful people I met in Sultan Kudarat. I guess fear is just in my mind and realize that locals here are friendly and warm to visitors like me.
Where in the Philippines is Sultan Kudarat and how to get there?
The best way to reach Sultan Kudarat Capitol is by boarding an AC Yellow Bus from General Santos to Marbel (Koronadal City) which takes an hour (Php60) then another Yellow Bus ride to Isulan, Sultan Kudarat (another 1 hour of travel, Php60). The bus stops at the Provincial Capitol. You can find the tourism office at the back of the Capitol.
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This blog is a product of my short stop-over in Sultan Kudarat during Day 62 of ISANGDAAN Journey en route Cotabato City.
#ISANGDAAN is a personal journey and challenge to backpack around the Philippines the cheapest way possible for 100 days. The book “ISANGDAAN” will be out soon!
If you want to follow my steps, I have an interactive map- ISANGDAAN Journey map.