Cantilan is located in the middle part of the Surigao countryside in Northeastern Mindanao. Established by the Spaniards in 1782 in the settlement of “Daang Lungsod” with the construction of the “Cota” better known as Baluarte de Señor San Miguel, it stands out with its rich cultural heritage and abundant natural wonders – unspoiled beaches of gray and white sand, scenic islands and islets, farmlands, lush vegetation and forest areas filled with rare plants and animals.
Early colonization by the Spaniards is evidenced by the structure of buildings and homes of most of its town’s folk. These houses, some over a hundred years old, had been preserved to keep its original structures up to this time.
According to legend, the word Cantilan originated from the big shell of a bi-valve locally called Telang. A couple with beautiful daughters lived close to the location of the big shell. When their suitors came to visit the daughters, they were usually asked along the way where they were headed for, and would answer, Can Tilang! (meaning to Tilangs). Eventually, Cantilang became Cantilan.
Cantilan is the cradle of the towns of Carrascal, Madrid, Carmen, and Lanuza, collectively known as CARCANMADCARLAN, all of which are located in the 1st district of Surigao del Sur. It takes three hours to reach the place from Surigao City and one hour away from Tandag City.
Present day Cantilan is aptly described as a rural town with the conveniences of modern living and technology.
From this town rose the CANTILAN BANK, INC., a rural bank established and envisioned to provide the Cantilangnons access to financial services and promote countryside development.
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