Bacolod Travel Guide

27 Things to do in Negros Occidental

Bacolod City – Negros Occidental is a wonderful place to travel and explore because it has a lot of hidden spots or places that will surely surprise or captivate you, be it a small and cozy cafe to a picnic spot or a hidden spring or water falls deep in the mountains, anyone will definitely find a place here they will either miss or love. We have gathered a list of the things, places and food we tried and visited that we personally liked and recommend to help visitors navigate their way around and give them a feel of what it’s like to be a local.

1. Hike Malatan-og Falls

Don Salvador Benedicto (DSB) is a municipality located at the center of the northern mountains in Negros Occidental and is about an hour and a half drive away from Bacolod City. Due to its high altitude, the route towards the place provides a scenic view for travellers and the increase of tourism has paved the way for several cafes and resorts to be opened in the area. 

2. Swim in the clear waters of Lakawon

Lakawon Island is a 13 hectare (32 acre) island off the coast of Cadiz which consists of pristine white sand, turquoise waters and a family-owned resort. It is a popular destination for locals and tourists because of its location and beauty of the place. 

3. Spend an afternoon at The Ruins

This is one of the most popular instagram worthy backgrounds for travellers due to its magnificent architecture also known as the “Taj Mahal of Negros”.

4. Go on an adventure at Sipalay Sugar Beach

There are 3 main areas in Sipalay for travellers and guests. The Sipalay City Center, the Southern Coast and lastly, the Sugar Beach which is the most popular beach in Sipalay for its kilometer-long sugary brown-colored sand strip where several affordable resorts and restaurants are also lined up.

5. Have a staycation or glamp at Ilaya Highland Resort

Located in the deep mountains of Patag, a 40 minute drive away from Bacolod North Bus Terminal. The place provides hotel-like amenities and services featuring their villa rooms with balinese inspired interiors, an A/C, a heater shower as well as a receiving and lounge area.

6. Have a fun day with family and friends in Campuestohan

Situated at about 800-meters above sea level, the place is surrounded by the forest of Mt. Makawili and gives you a panoramic view of the cities of Negros Occidental below including the Panay island across the ocean. The resort offers a variety of recreational activities like zipline, sky bicycle, hanging hamster wheel and rope course. 

7. Enjoy the rides at Magikland themed in Negros folklore

The first outdoor theme park concept of its kind in the region, built in a 5-hectare site in a Barangay in Silay. The theme of Magikland is based on Negros folklore and legend, adapting the legend of Bakunawa (the moon-eating dragon) to make it modern and fun, while still bearing respect to local culture. 

8. Try the famous chicken inasal at Manokan Country

Chicken Inasal (grilled chicken) is Bacolod’s most famous local delicacy known for its smoky taste and yellowish look. There are a lot of restaurants across Bacolod that offers this delicacy but Manokan Country is most famous for the different “inasalan” shops that are lined side by side in this particular area in Bacolod.

9. Grab a bite of Bacolod's best desserts

Satisfy your sweet tooth cravings with our list of PREcommended pastries and desserts from popular bake shops and pastry cafes in Bacolod and the neighboring cities.

- Calea

Calea is your best go to place if you want to try some Bacolod-original delectable desserts.

- Bascon cafe

It’s vintage- like interior with a background music of acoustic songs are what people like the most about Bascon Cafe. Aside from that, they have the best Baba and Oreo cake in town. They also serve Filipino cuisine with a touch of Spanish taste.

- Bob's

Cafe Bob’s is one of the pioneer coffee shops in Bacolod, back when there were a few if any cafe in the city. The owners started the cafe for the love of baking and specialty coffee which has grown to cater to a wider palate over the years. 

- Quino's

A cafe and pastry shop popular for their rainbow cake and puffyani. They offer a variety of menu from pasta, sandwiches, nachos, cakes, breakfast menu and drinks. 

- Ann Co Cakes

A family heritage famous for Tita Maguit’s Mocha Sans Rival, the family heirloom was continued by her daughter Ann Legaspi-Co who made her own specialty – the frozen Brazos which is a better version of Brazo de Mercedes and made available in smaller servings.

10. Experience horse back riding at Bantug Lake Ranch

An Eco Farm with full-grown fruit trees and organic garden where they cultivate herbs and vegetables using organic fertilizers with the aim of supplying for the main ingredients in their restaurant that serves delicious Filipino cuisine also located inside the ranch. 

11. Experience adrenaline rush at Iron Elk Adventure Park

A mountain bike trail Adventure Park beside Bantug Lake Ranch where you can experience adrenaline rush riding a bike, buggy or an ATV ride.

12. Enjoy good food and serenity of the place at Punong Gary's

An inconspicuous restaurant that offers a 5-course meal for lunch or dinner, situated beside the main road of E.B. Magalona Silay City but you will need to travel through a narrow off-road path lined with trees and sugarcane fields before reaching the place.

13. Feast on seafood menu

Thinking of feasting on seafood like sinigang, tinola or grilled milkfish (bangus), blue marlin, tanguige and tuna? How about adobong pusit (squid) or calamares, talaba (oysters), buttered shrimp, crabs and fish sauteed in a savory and spicy sauce? These places are a great place to go and satisfy your seafood cravings.

- Diotay's

One of our personal favorite when it comes to “paihaw/paluto”. The concept is the same with Dampa in Manila where you choose from the fresh seafood displayed at their counter and request the staff on how you want it cooked, either kinilaw, sinigang, grilled, buttered or sauteed in savory sauce.

- Balaring

Choose from one of the floating seafood restaurants along the coast of Balaring, a small barangay in Silay. They serve affordable and fresh seafood dishes in ample servings. You can enjoy your food with the view of the seaside. 

- Bacolod 18th Street Pala pala Seafood Grill & Restaurant

At Bacolod 18th St. Palapala Seafood Grill Restaurant, you can choose the seafood you want, just go to the seafood counter and select the fish or sea shell you want for your “Paluto”. Fresh seafood are delivered everyday.

14. Ride your bike or motorcycle to Rooster Cafe & Resto

Rooster cafe has become one of the most popular place to go to for motorists and people who wants to unwind after a long busy week. The resto offers a wide variety of budget friendly Ilonggo classics such as crispy pata and bistek tagalog as well as light snacks in ample servings. Being situated in a highland gives the place a stunning view of Silay city as well as a refreshing atmosphere that relaxes the tired soul.

15. Go for a jog

If you are health conscious or merely loving your usual early morning jog or walk, these are favorite places among locals to do these physical activities before they start or end the day. Often these places offer space and accessibility which makes it perfect to do exercise with trees to provide shade and cool breeze in the early morning or late afternoon.

- Capitol Lagoon

Located at the heart of Bacolod and is accessible to most of the well-established cafes, hotels and restaurants in the city. The park features large trees which provide shade and cool breeze for joggers and anyone who just wants to unwind or have a family picnic.

- New government Center (NGC)

It is one of the new landmarks in Bacolod City, inaugurated in July 2010 and built to replace the old City Hall at Araneta-Luzuriaga Streets. From a vast sugarcane field, the place has transformed into a commercial development center due to several business establishments, cafes & restaurants, banks, hotels, bpo centers and jeepney routes that opened in the surrounding area.

- Silay City Plaza

A simple but cozy and charming park that reflects the laid back atmosphere of the city. It features age-old trees with benches and/or sitting areas where people can just take a moment to sit down and pass the time. This is also a place for street vendors selling street foods such as kwek2x, fish balls, etc.. to students and employees who visit the park after school or working hours.

16. Try authentic Paella at Azucarera

Azucarera serves an extensive menu of Spanish food in the city and they are famous for their “Paella”. Their store is a two-story building in a modern and artistic design surrounded by glass windows that makes it look like the diners inside are part of the framed paintings to the world outside.

17. Take a roadtrip in one of the most scenic routes in Negros

- Patag

A mountainous area in the city of Silay which features a lush rainforest, scenic landscapes, rivers and hidden falls. The road to Lantawan – Patag has became a booming tourist spots with the establishments of several cafes and resorts while preserving the natural resources of the place with the support of the local government, environmentalists and private sectors who puts much effort in educating the community and setting an example on preservation of the forest and water shed areas that is home to a number of various species of plants, animals and birds.


Don Salvador Benedicto (DSB) is a municipality located at the center of the northern mountains in Negros Occidental and is about an hour and a half drive away from Bacolod City. Due to its high altitude, the route towards the place provides a scenic view for travellers and the increase of tourism has paved the way for several cafes and resorts to be opened in the area.

18. Travel back in time visiting the ancestral houses at Cinco de Noviembre St.

The “Balay Negrense” for example is one of the few ancestral houses situated along the streets of Cinco De Noviembre, Silay City. The house was built in the 1890s and completed in 1901, commissioned by Victor Fernandez Gaston who was a sugar magnate in the 19th century. Balay Negrense is one of the several Heritage Houses recognized by the National Historical Institute in Negros Occidental.

19. Buy native delicacies for your pasalubong

Going to a new place or city not only inspires us to visit the popular tourist spots but also encourages us to try out the delicacies and food of the locals for a more holistic experience. If you want to look for local delicacies or popular “kakanins” in Negros Occidental, be sure to visit these place/shops to complete your “lagaw” experience or find something for your pasalubong.

- Quan Delicacies

Quan is famous for their native delicacies and has become an institution in the city of Bacolod. The owners started with a single delicacy, the soft and tasty rice puto, and has grown into a wider menu of kakanins (native delicacies) and local food like the Dinuguan which is a flavorful stew of pork and chicken meat simmered in a rich, spicy dark gravy of pig blood, garlic, chili and vinegar.

- El Ideal Bakery

El Ideal, more than a bakery and a restaurant, has also been considered a landmark and a heritage site in Silay. Their store has been in existence for a century now and they are located in the exact same spot eversince with the original facade of the old house as part of their feature design.

- Roli's Cafe

The shop was established in the 1940’s and was previously known as Roli’s Diner. They were famous for their Napoleones but also serve a variety of local menus.

- Silay Public Market

Support the locals by buying their homemade products at the Silay City Public Market. You will find kakanin vendors in every corner of the public market and they are available daily but mostly in the morning hours. They also have a place inside the market building where they have tables for each vendor displaying their products of kakanins and all kinds of food for merienda or pamahaw.

20. Join the festivity of fruits at Maradula Festival

The MARADULA festival is a celebration of fruitful harvest every year and to thank god for the abundant blessings. MARADULA is an abbreviation for the abundant fruit produce in Brgy. Concepcion, which are MAngosteen and MArang, RAmbutan, DUrian and LAnzones, respectively. Although there are other fruit varieties that grows in Brgy. Concepcion, the maradula fruits seem to be the most prolific fruit bearing trees especially in the area.

21. Find street foods

Satisfy your cravings for kwek-kwek, tempura, fishball, squidball, hot cake, banana cue and find other fast food snacks in these spots.

- Silay City Plaza

A simple but cozy and charming park that reflects the laid back atmosphere of the city. It features age-old trees with benches and/or sitting areas where people can just take a moment to sit down and pass the time. This is also a place for street vendors selling street foods such as kwek2x, fish balls, etc.. to students and employees who visit the park after school/working hours. It was originally designed by an Italian architect but was demolished at the height of Marcos’ Martial Law Era. It was called the Plaza Olympia Severino, Olympia is the one who led the making of the Philippine flag that was raised at Silay plaza for the first time in November 5, 1898 after a bloodless revolution which brought about the city’s freedom. There have been talks to revive the Plaza Olympia to promote tourism in Silay. 

22. Visit Farmville de Bago

Farmville de Bago is a 16.68 hectare mix-use farm complex that started as a major poultry and quality pork provider for most well-established food businesses in Bacolod. It also houses breeder sheep and goats on top of camels, donkeys and fancy miniature horses from Australia. Recently, they partnered with Energy Development Corporation (EDC) with its flagship environmental program called “Binhi” which focuses on research and rescue of threatened species of trees in Philippine forests and aims to bring back abundance of these premium native trees. Farmville De Bago is now considered the 24th arboretum that will serve as a new haven of Philippine native trees. It is also a member of Negros Forest and Ecological Foundation and features several rare endemic, flowering trees, imported exotic tree species, and a few hundreds of fruit bearing trees.

23. Support Philippine Reef and Rainforest Conservation efforts in Danjugan

This is a 43-hectare (110-acre) island under the jurisdiction of Cauayan, Negros Occidental, Philippines. The island is under the care of The Philippine Reef and Rainforest Conservation Foundation, Inc. (PRRCFI) which aims to promote awareness on biodiversity protection by means of ecotourism. Home to more than 500 species of fish and more than 200 species of hard and soft corals.

The island is a known nesting ground of Philippine megapod or scrubfowl, sea turtles, and fruit bats. Other animals that can be observed during snorkeling and diving are giant clams and seasonal visitors like reef sharks, rays, dolphins and on occasion the migrating whale sharks.

24. Enjoy a cup of hot local coffee

- Larga Cafe

The shop feels like a time capsule that brings you back in time with their collection of antiques and memorablias. Enjoy popular breakfast menu and hot coffee in a cozy and relaxing atmosphere or feel the immemorial charm of Silay while lounging in the upstairs floor of the cafe.

- Cafe 1925

A small and cozy cafe in the corner of Silay streets that offers unique and home made Negrense culinary dishes that varies every week. The interior reflects the heritage of Silay as the Paris of Negros for its display of arts depicting the old places in the city. Their Churros has been one of our favorites for its flavorful batons and is best eaten with chocolate dip while it is still hot. Their pasta menu has also gained favorable reviews from customers.

- Balay Kapihan

A laidback coffee experience in the mountains of Patag where you can enjoy native coffee and a good and palatable serving of food and snacks in an outback setting and cool atmosphere.

- Coffee Culture

Roasting the coffee beans is one of the most important factors that affects the taste of a cup of coffee as the right temperature turns raw beans into a distinctively aromatic, flavorful and dark brown coffee beans that we recognize. In Coffee Culture Roastery, they put emphasis in customized roasting to achieve the desired flavor of coffee. 

25. Visit Negros Museum

The Negros Museum is unique in the country because it doesn’t focus on curating artifacts, instead, it features contemporary artworks and reproductions that narrates the history of Negros. Its focus is to show through art (paintings) what the people and the province was before and how it evolved through time.

26. unwind and relax at Punta Bulata Resort & Spa

Punta Bulata Resort is known to have one of the finest and whitest beaches in Cauayan. You will enjoy walking in the one whole kilometer stretch of white sand beach in privacy as well as swimming in the waters teeming with marine life and corals. The guests of the resort are able to choose from a wide variety of accommodations from native Filipino nipa‐hut cottages to luxurious spa rooms and all are just a few steps away from the beach.

27. What do you think?

Nominate your favorite local attraction, local business or your favorite thing to do in Negros…