Diura Fishing Village: Home of Mataws and their Traditional Fishing Rites and Rituals

Diura Fishing Village is a tiny coastal community facing the Pacific Ocean in Barangay Uvoy, Mahatao, Batanes, the Philippines. Diura is composed of around 37 families, all of which are members of the Diura Fishermen’s Association (mataw).

I went here at 9:50 a.m. on February 23, 2014. This was during my first time in Batanes, the 29th province on my list.

Diura Fishing Village

Diura Fishing Village

What to see and do

Situated along Madi Bay, one can go to the beach not to swim because of strong currents but for a good view of the bay, the Pacific, and Mount Iraya.

Diura Fishing Village is the site known for Kapayvanuvanua, a ritual performed every first week of March by Ivatan fishermen that marks the start of the fishing season. Kapayvanuvanua involves butchering of a pig and a carabao and a prayer for a bountiful fishing season and safety while at sea. During this season, fishermen catches mahi-mahi or dolphin fish (arayu or dorado in Batanes).

The local government of Mahatao maintains a traditional Ivatan house for visitors wishing to stay in the village.

The Batanes State College (BSC), in coordination with the local government of Mahatao maintains a fish laboratory farm in Diura that specializes in tilapia hatchery operation to provide the needed fingerlings aimed at boosting the aqua culture in the province.

How to get to Diura Fishing Village

From downtown Mahatao, take a tricycle and tell the driver to drop you off at Diura Fishing Village. It is around three kilometers east of the downtown and would cost around Php 80 and takes about ten minutes. Since the village is not a common route for the tricycles, you may want to tell the driver to pick you up to return to the downtown. One hour is enough to explore Diura Fishing Village and Rakuh-a-idi Spring for fast walkers but if you wish to bathe at the spring, you’re going to need at least two hours.

Visitors of Diura are required to pay Php 50 and sign on the guestbook.


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