Toledo City was once called Hinulawan, which is the same name of a river in the area. The name is supposedly a combination of two words: ”hinaguan” or fruits of labor and “bulawan” or gold. It was renamed after one of the provinces in Spain. The town of Toledo was established under the leadership of Fermin Poloyapoy.
The Hinulawan Festival is one of the most anticipated events in Toledo City. It is celebrated on the 12th of June each year. The festival is inspired by the Hinulawan River of the city. The cultural dances performed during the festival highlight the history of the city. In addition, the dances also portray present-day Toledo City. The four main features of Toledo City are also depicted in the dances: Golden Friendship, Golden Faith, Golden Harvest, and Golden Treasure.
Similar to many festivals in Cebu, trade fairs and cultural nights are also held in the days leading to the festival. In addition, the city also holds a beauty pageant, government employees’ night, and talents night prior to the big day. Since the festival falls on the same day as the Philippine Independence Day, a flag-raising activity is typically held in the Toledo City Hall. Activities related to the festival start at around noon.
Toledo City is located around 50 kilometers away from the Queen City of the South. You can reach Toledo City by getting on a bus headed for the city at the Cebu South Bus Terminal. Since Toledo City is one of the gateways to Negros Island, you will not have any problems in getting a ride to the city, unless it’s a weekend. During this time many residents of Toledo working in Cebu City may decide to go home for the weekend.
Have you experienced the Hinulawan Festival already? Share to us your experience on the comments section below.