Bacolod Travel Guide – The City of Smiles in a Day
Bacolod, the City of Smiles, is the home of the famous Masskara Festival. It is one of the well-known cities in Negros Island not only because of the convenience it provides as a transport hub, but also because of its mouth-watering food.
It is difficult to get a clear overview of the place in a day but a visit to well-known tourist spots, which include a trip to Bacolod City and nearby cities of Talisay and Silay, can give you an anticipatory glimpse of what the province of Negros Occidental can actually offer. This travel guide provides you with a short but succinct information about Bacolod (and nearby cities) in a day.
Table of Contents
HOW TO GO TO BACOLOD
How to Go To Bacolod City from Metro Manila
Bacolod is an hour away by plane from Metro Manila. It is served by an International Airport in Silay City; airport code is BCD. Cebu Pacific and Philippine Airlines fly to the city 5 times daily.
Supercat 2GO ferry service also sails the Manila – Bacolod route thrice a week but the travel time can take 20 hours to 1 day!
How to Go To Bacolod City from Dumaguete City
Dumaguete, in Negros Oriental, is 6 hours away from Bacolod (which is in Negros Occidental). Buses of Ceres Liner (terminal is just within the city) ply the Dumaguete – Bacolod route every hour. Make sure to take the air-conditioned bus for a more comfortable trip. If you want a shorter trip, take the via Mabinay route. If you want a longer but scenic trip, take the via Kabankalan route. We took the via Hinobaan route and it took us 8 hours! Fare is Php380 per way.
How to Go to Bacolod City from Iloilo City
Bacolod City from Iloilo City is just an hour of ferry ride. Oceanjet and Supercat 2GO sail daily between these two cities.
GETTING AROUND BACOLOD
Jeepney is the primary mode of transportation in Bacolod and its neighboring towns. Pedicabs and tricycles are also available for short trips. If you are after convenience, you can rent a taxi instead. Needless to say, the taxi options is quite expensive especially since most of them are not using the meter – they charge commuters via “pakyaw” or what-they-think-is-fair amount. During our visit we paid the taxi driver Php 1,300 for bringing us to 3 places (Campuestuhan, Balay Negrense, and The Ruins), a trip that lasted for 5 hours.
TOURS IN BACOLOD
DIY is the cheapest and the best way to go around Bacolod. It may take some time transferring from one town to another but that is the essence of travelling, isn’t it? By taking in the place in various ways possible – riding the different kinds of transportation included. If you are a group of 3-4 persons, it is better to rent a taxi for the whole-day trip. Now, if you prefer the hassle-free (expensive though) Bacolod tour/s, you may get in touch with various tour agency. We highly recommend Sole Adventours.
BACOLOD TRAVEL GUIDE IN A DAY
Bacolod is full of “trip treats.” We only spent a day in this unassuming place during our Siquijor–Bacolod-Dumaguete tour but we will make sure to go back to this place anytime soon and spend 3 full days! There are a lot of things that we have yet to do and so many places that we have yet to visit. For now, we only have three in our list. Make sure to check back as we promise to update this blog entry someday.
Campuestuhan – This 5-hectare property radiates the magnificence of Mt. Makawili and the breathtaking views of the province of Negros Occidental, and even that of Panay Island. This place is a wonderland that provides glee to kids and adults alike. The life-sized dinosaurs, superheroes, giants, a long hanging bridge, swimming pools, and beautifully built cottages will transport you to the la la fairyland. Entrance fee is Php 150 which includes the free use of swimming pools, playgrounds, and resort grounds. Children 2 years old and below are free of charge.
Balay Negrense in Sipalay – This almost-a-hundred-years-old two-storey ancestral house was built in the 1920s. It has been renovated and converted into a museum by the Negros Cultural Foundation. The house itself is already an attraction – built from stone, cement, and hardwood – it will never fail to impress. Add the history of war and life of a sugar baron and his family in the 19th century and it will leave you wishing to go back in time and secretly live the lives they lived. The museum opens at 10AM and closes at 5PM daily, except on Mondays. This is a must-see if you’re a sucker for architecture and history. Entrance fee is Php 60.
The Ruins – This remains of the grand mansion, which Don Mariano Lacson built for his wife Maria Braga, is the most prominent landmark in Bacolod. It is known not only because of its jaw-dropping beauty but also because of the love story that lies within its walls. The secrets are waiting for you to be unveiled. The Ruins is open to the public from 8:30AM to 8:00PM daily. Entrance fee is Php 100.
WHERE TO STAY IN BACOLOD
Bacolod is a busy and touristy city so you will never run out of places to stay when you are at the area. Lodgings, inns, and hotels catering to the A, B and C crowd are plentiful. Search various accommodation options below:
WHERE TO EAT IN BACOLOD
There are throngs of restaurants everywhere in the city, although we haven’t had the chance to do some food tripping, we highly recommend checking out Manokan Country. Why? Because they have the best Chicken Inasal in the whole wide world! Besides, a trip to Bacolod is not complete without having a taste of their famous Chicken Inasal!
We (me and my two-year-old daughter) spent roughly Php 3,000 (all-in) for our less than 48 hours stay in Bacolod. The amount of money you will have to shell out will depend on the number of people in your group, kind of accommodation you prefer, and tour/s.
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