The municipality of Besao is believed to have derived its name from the Ilocano word \”Buso\” meaning headhunter. The people then of the neighboring towns specifically those from the Ilocos Region believed that the early \”Besaos\” were headhunters. The word later on evolved as it is now called – Besao.
Besao is presently composed of 14 barangays, namely: Agawa, Ambagiw, Banguitan, Besao West, Besao East, Catengan, Gueday, Kin-iway, Lacmaaan, Laylaya, Padanga, Payeo, Suquib and Tamboan.
Last updated 5 July 2002.