Aside from being referred to as Ilocanos (from "i" – 'from', and "looc" – 'bay'), they also refer to themselves as Samtoy, from the Ilocano phrase "sao mi ditoy", meaning 'our language origin'. The word "Ilocano" came from the word "Iloco" or "Yloco."
Provinces where Ilocano people are the largest ethnic group are shown in green.
Ilocandia is the term given to the traditional homeland of the Ilocano people. From the original western strip of Northern Luzon, Ilocandia has spread throughout the Cagayan Valley and some parts of Central Luzon.
Many Filipino Americans are of Ilocano descent. They make up 85% of the Filipino-American population in Hawaii.
The Austronesian ancestors of the present-day Ilocanos came to the Philippines through bilogs, or outrigger boats during the Iron Age.
Spanish Era to the Philippine Republic
In 1572,Juan de Salcedo arrived to the town of Bauang.
The mounting population pressure due to the substantial population density during the mid-19th century caused the migration of the Ilocanos out of their historic homeland. By 1903, more than 290,000 Ilocanos migrated to Central Luzon, Cagayan Valley, and Metro Manila. More than 180,000 moved to Pangasinan, Tarlac, and Nueva Ecija. Almost 50,000 moved to Cagayan Valley; half of them resided in Isabela. Around 47,000 lived in Zambales.
The Ilocano Diaspora continued in 1906 when Ilocanos started to migrate to Hawaii and California. Ilocanos composed the largest number of expatriates in the United States, though most are bilingual with Tagalog. There is a significant Ilocano community in Hawaii, in which they make up more than 85% of the Filipino population there.
Ilocanos boast of a somewhat healthy diet heavy in boiled or steamed vegetables and freshwater fish, but are particularly fond of dishes flavored with bagoong, fermented fish that is often used instead of salt. Ilocanos often season boiled vegetables with bagoong monamon (fermented anchovy paste) to produce pinakbet. Local specialties include the "abuos," soft white larvae of ants, and "jumping salad" or tiny, live shrimp with kalamansi juice.
One of the most well-known Ilocano literary works written in Iloco is the Biag ni Lam-ang (The Life of Lam-Ang), an epic poem about the fantastic life and escapades of an Ilocano hero named Lam-ang.
The ilocano writer Elizabeth Medina is probably the most remarkable living ilocano writer in Spanish language.
Jose Burgos, Filipino priest and martyr during Spanish times.
Sonny Cabatu (born on October 10, 1960 in Cabugao, Ilocos Sur), is a retired Filipino professional basketball player in the Philippine Basketball Association and was the very draft pick of the league in 1985. He is also the father of current Barangay Ginebra Kings player Junjun Cabatu.
Onofre Corpuz, from Camiling, Tarlac, writer and former secretary of the Department of Education; 13th president of the University of the Philippines; president of the Development Bank of the Philippines.
Erlinda Fadera-Basilio, ambassador and permanent representative of the Philippines to the United Nations and other international organizations in Geneva, Switzerland; the first woman Vice President of the UN Human Rights Council; founding member of the English Speaking Union (ESU), Philippines Chapter. She is from Bacnotan, La Union.
Ferdinand Marcos, 10th President of the Philippines (1965 – 1986). Also considered as the best President of the Philippines. He is from Batac City, Ilocos Norte where his remains is frozen on a refrigerated crypt.
Ferdinand Marcos, Jr., also known as BongBong Marcos, is the only son of former president Ferdinand Marcos. He served as governor of Ilocos Norte from 1998 - 2007. He also served as a representative of Ilocos Norte's 2nd District. He is currently a Senator of the Philippines.
Mariano Marcos, father of Ferdinand Marcos, was a lawyer and a politician.
Liza Maza (born 8 September 1957) is a Filipino activist and development worker. She represents the Gabriela Women's Party in the 13th Congress of the Philippines.
Martha Vanessa Antonio del Moral, better known by her screen name Vaness del Moral (born on May 23, 1988 in Baguio City, Benguet, Philippines), is a Filipina actress and a talent at one of the top management groups in the Philippines, the GMA Artist Center.
Alma Moreno (born May 25, 1959 in Cervantes, Ilocos Sur) is a Filipina actress and politician.
Paulino Santos from Camiling, Tarlac, a former chief of staff of the Philippine Army during the time of Philippine President Manuel Luis Quezon; founder of Penal Colonies and a Philippine Constabulary Second Lieutenant.
Luis "Chavit" Singson (born June 21, 1941), better known as Chavit Singson, is a Filipino politician. He was a former Governor of the province of Ilocos Sur, Philippines since 1998. He is the owner of the Partas Bus Company. He is from Vigan, Ilocos Sur
Jessica Soho (born March 27, 1964) is Filipino broadcast journalist, documentarian and news director who received a George Foster Peabody Award and was the first Filipino to win the British Fleet Journalism Award in 1998. She is from San Juan, La Union
Máximo Villaflor Solivén (September 4, 1929 – November 24, 2006) was a prominent Filipino journalist and newspaper publisher. In a career that spanned six decades, he attained his greatest peak and influence with the Philippine Star, which he co-founded in 1986, and where he served as publisher until his death. His daily column published in the Star, titled "By The Way", was one of the most widely read newspaper columns in the Philippines
Teófilo Yldefonso, "the Ilocano Shark" (February 9, 1903 – July 19, 1943), was a Filipino swimmer who specialized in the breaststroke. He was the first Filipino to win an Olympic medal, and the only Filipino to win multiple medals. He was born in Piddig, Ilocos Norte.