Municipality of San Benito

  San Benito, a former barangay of Numancia (Del Carmen), lies north of Surigao City, around 45 nautical miles.  It was created as a municipality by virtue of Republic Act No. 6396 on September 17, 1971.  It is a coastal town with a population of 4,528 (1986).  Its main products are copra, fish and other agricultural crops like cassava, camote and gabi.

    The municipality is now the focus of big fishing boat operators because tuna fish and other first class fish abound in its sea.  Presently, there are tuna exporters anchored in its coast and purchase the tuna fish caught by the local fishermen.

     Aside from the sea products, this town is also agriculturally developed.  Well-grown coconut trees and other agricultural crops like rice, rootcrops and corn provide additional income to the residents.

    It was said that during the Spanish Regime, a group of Jesuit  missionaries happened to be assigned at Sapao, now called the Municipality of Sta. Monica. They were fascinated with the vast array of blooming Talisay Trees in the place where the Municipality of San Benito presently stands. Their enchantment made them to name the place “Talisay.”
     After exploiting the place and observing the cultural behaviour of the people, a chapel was built bearing the relic of Saint Benedict. After a couple of years, Talisay was changed to San Benito in honor of Saint Benedict, its patron saint.
     San Benito became a civil barrio of Sapao. When Sapao was reverted to a barrio by virtue of an executive order of the Military Governor, San Benito was then ceded to Numancia, now Del Carmen, and became its largest barangay.
     It was Congressman Constantino C. Navarro, Sr., who proposed and sponsored a bill for the creation of San Benito as a new municipality. After complying with the formalities and legal requirements, on September 17, 1971, Republic Act No. 6396 came into being creating the Municipality of San Benito. Presently, the town is composed of six (6) barangays, namely: Talisay, Sta. Cruz, Nuevo Campo, San Juan, Bongdo and Maribojoc.
     The Municipality of San Benito is one of the richest fishing grounds in Siargao Island. Fishing ranks second in terms of source of income of the people.

    Legal Basis of Creation : RA 6396
    Date of Creation : September 21, 1971
    Congressional District : First Congressional District
    Province : Surigao del Norte
    Region : Caraga Region XIII
    Land Area : 56.80 square kilometres
    Population : 5,275 as of 2007 (NSCB)
    Class : 5th class; partially urban
    No. of Barangays : 6 barangays
    Boundaries : Northeast : Municipality of Sta. Monica, Surigao del Norte
   •     Southeast: Municipality of Del Carmen, Surigao del Norte
   •     Northwest: Dinagat Island, Province of Dinagat Island
   •     Southwest: Municipality of San Isidro, Surigao del Norte


    Poneas Hilltop Hidden Lake is a mountain top lake which is home to different species of freshwater fish. The lake’s basin area is approximately three hectares and has a depth of 37 feet. Its transparent and seemingly bottomless water reflects a mirror-like panorama of blue heavens, green hills and silver gleam of tiny fishes darting the water. Poneas Hilltop Hidden Lake is a vision of sylvan serenity. It can be reached by a 30-minute pumpboat ride from the poblacion.

   The Kangkangon White Beach boasts of its white sand and crystal clear water which is potential for water sports and recreation. Kangkangon White Beach is also suitable for sun bathing and night swimming. Its silvery white sand is free of huge and pointed rocks and corals. It can be reached through a 15-minute pumpboat ride from the poblacion.

    The Pagbasayan Islet is a 7.5 hectare islet of white sand surrounded by a vegetation of seaweed plantations. Seaweed culture is an alternative livelihood among the local fisherfolks. Its shallow clear waters  is best for swimming for children. The islet can be reached through a  15-minute pumpboat ride from the poblacion.

    Litalit Islet is a two-hectare islet surrounded with long white beaches. Its shores are famous and suitable for fish breeding and spawning due to the presence of live and healthy corals. This area is best for diving, especially those who love to see the beauty of nature underwater. Its neighboring marshland is home and breeding place of crabs, clams and other species of fish. The presence of thick and undisturbed mangrove forest mainly contributes to the existence of a diverse ecosystem. Litalit Islet can be reached through a 10-minute pumpboat ride from the poblacion.

    This unique naked island can be reached through a 20-minute pumpboat ride from the town proper. The seductive beauty of this island is displayed during mean low tides. It is haven for birds of various species and is surrounded with healthy groomed sea grass and wide array of corals.