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This article is about the Philippine island. For other uses, see Mindoro (disambiguation).
Ph locator map mindoro.png
Location within the Philippines
Location South East Asia
Coordinates 12°55′49″N 121°5′40″E / 12.93028°N 121.09444°E / 12.93028; 121.09444Coordinates: 12°55′49″N 121°5′40″E / 12.93028°N 121.09444°E / 12.93028; 121.09444
Archipelago Philippines
Adjacent bodies of water
Area 10,571.8 km2 (4,081.8 sq mi)[1]
Area rank 74th
Coastline 618.8 km (384.5 mi)[2]
Pop. density 117.2 /km2 (303.5 /sq mi)
Ethnic groups

Mindoro (Tagalog pronunciation: [mɪnˈdoɾo]) is the seventh-largest island in the Philippines. It is located off the coast of Luzon and northeast of Palawan. The southern coast of Mindoro forms the northeastern extremum of the Sulu Sea.[3]


1900 map of Mindoro island

In past times, it has been called Ma-i or Mait by Han Chinese traders and by Spaniards, as Mina de Oro (meaning "gold mine") from where the island got its current name. According to the late historian William Henry Scott, an entry in the official history of the Sung Dynasty for the year 972 mentions Ma-i as a trading partner of China. Other Chinese records referring to Ma-i or Mindoro appear in the years that follow.[4]

The products that Mindoro traders exchanged with the Chinese included "beeswax, cotton, true pearls, tortoise shell, medicinal betelnuts and yu-ta [jute?] cloth" for Chinese porcelain, trade gold, iron pots, lead, copper, colored glass beads and iron needles.[4]

The island was briefly ruled by the Sultanate of Brunei and housed Moro settlements before the Spanish invaded and Christianized the population.

From 1920 to 1950, the island was a single province with Calapan City as the provincial capital. In 1950, it was partitioned into its two present-day provinces, Occidental Mindoro and Oriental Mindoro,[5] following a referendum that was pushed through by then acting governor Romeo Venturanza.

The island was the location of the Battle of Mindoro in World War II.


Beach in Northern Mindoro

The economy of Mindoro is largely based on agriculture. Products consist of a wide variety of fruits, such as citrus, bananas, lanzones, rambutan and coconuts, grainss (rice and corn), sugarcane, peanuts, fish (catfish, milkfish and tilapia), livestock and poultry. Logging and the mining of marble and copper also thrive.

Tourism is a lucrative business as well, with locations such as Apo Reef National Park, Lubang Island, Puerto Galera, Sabang Beach and Mount Halcon. Puerto Galera's beaches are the island's most known tourist attraction and are widely visited.


The principal language in Mindoro is Tagalog, although in some parts it has been greatly influenced by the native Mangyan and Visayan languages. Mainstream Standard Filipino and Taglish are, indeed, present in and around such areas as Calapan City, Pinamalayan, Puerto Galera and San Jose. Visayan and Mangyan languages, too, are spoken on the island, as are Ilocano, Bicolano, and some foreign languages — e.g., English, Hokkien, and to a lesser extent, Spanish.

The following indigenous languages are spoken in Mindoro. is

The common religions on the island fall under Christianity. The religion of the indigenous Mangyan population is animism. Though they are into animism as a principal religion, the Roman Catholic Church in some of Mindoro's parts is also active, so are a few independent subdivisions, like Iglesia Ni Cristo and Philippine Independent Church, as well as the Baptist Church.


Mindoro is also home to the tamaraw or Mindoro dwarf buffalo (Bubalus mindorensis), which is endemic to the island. The tamaraw is a bovine related to the water buffalo (carabao) and is an endangered species.


  • C.Michael Hogan. 2011. Sulu Sea. Encyclopedia of Earth. Eds. P.Saundry & C.J.Cleveland. Washington DC


  1. ^ "Islands of Philippines". Island Directory. United Nations Environment Programme. Retrieved 22 May 2015. 
  2. ^ "Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay: as of May 1, 2010" (PDF). 2010 Census of Population and Housing. National Statistics Office. Retrieved 22 May 2015. 
  3. ^ C.Michael Hogan. 2011. Sulu Sea
  4. ^ a b Scott, William Henry. (1984). "Societies in Prehispanic Philippines". Prehispanic Source Materials for the Study of Philippine History. Quezon City: New Day Publishers. p. 70. ISBN 971-10-0226-4. 
  5. ^ "Republic Act No. 505 - An Act to Create the Provinces of Oriental Mindoro and Occidental Mindoro". Chan Robles Virtual Law Library. 13 June 1950. Retrieved 9 March 2016. 

External links

  • Media related to Mindoro at Wikimedia Commons
  • Geographic data related to Mindoro at OpenStreetMap
  • "Map of Mindoro" showing towns and major mountain tops

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