Top Places Not to Miss when you visit the City of Smiles
History, nature, and food: these cannot be missed in the Top Tourist Destinations in Bacolod City. Bacolod City is famous for the Masskara Festival, delicious foods, and the rich historical and cultural heritage it offers to visitors.
The City has been nicknamed the City of Smiles. Why so? A trip to the Top Tourist Destinations in Bacolod City might give a curious traveler a clue!
Must see Places in Bacolod City
1] Negros Museum
A great place to begin a deep dive into Bacolod’s culture is the Negros Museum. This showcases the city’s history and annals of its founding families, as well as Negrense culture must-knows. The structure was built in 1925 as the Provincial Agriculture Building.
The museum is the first in its kind to not house precious archaeological artifacts, but rather was designed to display Negrense lifestyle and society, which includes old furnishings and loaned items from ancestral houses
2] Negros Capitol Park and Lagoon
The lovely Capitol Park and lagoon near the museum is a must-see too after a tour. This park, which houses several important buildings with neoclassical architecture, is a great spot to catch the famous Bacolod sunset.
One of the features of the park are matching sculptures depicting a woman standing alongside a water buffalo and that of a man pulling another water buffalo. These sculptures are located at the northern and southern ends of the lagoon. These figures were executed by Italian sculpture Francesco Riccardo Monti
3] Negros Forest Park
Inside the Forest Park visitors can see rare warty pigs, leopard cats, spotted deer, bleeding heart pigeons and many more animals in danger of vanishing forever.
They are open Tuesday to Sunday and closed on Mondays for Maintenance. Entrance Fee: Adult= P100.00; Children and Senior Citizen P50.00.
4] Bacolod’s New Government Center
Department of Tourism (DOT) 6 has cited Bacolod City’s famous New Government Center (NGC) as one of the “must-see” tourism destinations in Western Visayas.
5] San Sebastian Cathedral
This place of worship in the heart of Bacolod City is central to the people’s culture and spirituality. This church is notable for its well-preserved structure, made from coral stones and old hardwoods.
6] Pope John Paul II Tower
The seven-story buidling commemorates the late Pope John Paul II’s pastoral visit to Bacolod last February 20, 1981. The tower was built in the area where he delivered one of his most powerful messages on behalf of the poor.
7] Jojo Vito Designs Gallery
You can experience Masskara Festival vibe all year at Jojo Vito Designs Gallery in Bacolod City. It’s a great place to buy Masskara souvenirs and spark your creativity by painting your own mask. One of the must-see spots when you visit Bacolod City.
8] Sharyns Kansi
Cansi meat is very soft that fell off the bone and included the marrow while the steaming hot soup is amazingly delicious. You could tell that it was prepared with effort and made perfect by years of experience. No wonder Sharyns Cansi is 32nd place out of 50 hawkers in the World Street Food Congress.
You will smell a robust beefy flavor once inside the restaurant. We highly recommend this place, so don’t leave Bacolod without trying it at least once.
9] Manokan Country
It would be a sin to go to Bacolod and skip out on its mouth-watering dishes, such as the famed chicken inasal. To get this favorite in its most “authentic” form, head on to Manokan Country.
This food hub is home to various diners and stalls, most of them specializing in this celebrated grilled chicken dish. Heaps and heaps of rice, with dipping sauces are highly recommended.
To finish off a food trip, or get some pasalubong for the trip home, Calea is the place to go. This local patisserie has a wide selection of cakes and pastries that you can enjoy either on the spot or brought back as gifts.
Calea is easy to locate in the city proper, just near the L’Fisher Hotel.
Must see Places near Bacolod City
1] The Ruins
Photographers and shutterbugs should not miss The Ruins situated in Talisay, which is part of Metro Bacolod. This picturesque park was once a sugar plantation’s manor; today the shell of the old house and the exquisite gardens make an excellent venue for photo trips and sunset viewing.
2] Balay Negrense
Also in Metro Bacolod is the Balay Negrenese of Silay. This house is an exemplar of the Spanish-era bahay na bato architecture, with a stone first floor and wooden second floor. The interior display different artisan pieces and antiques collected over the years.
5] Lakawon Island
This white sand island is famous for having some of the best beaches in the area. Lakawon Island is an excellent place for family outings or picnics, thanks to its facilities for water sports as well as pristine covers for swimming, sunbathing and relaxing.
6] Mambukal Mountain Resort
For visitors with less affinity for the sand and surf, Mambukal Mountain Resort is the place to go. Its hiking trail takes visitors to see seven beautiful waterfalls in the hills.
The park also has a zip line, gardens, and swimming pools suitable for all ages. If rest and relaxation is more on the agenda, this park has its own Japanese Ofuro pool, and an Ishiwata Bath House.
7] Campuestohan Highlands Resort
Traveling with kids? Then head on to the Campuestohan Highlands Resort. This place has something for everyone: playgrounds and a pool for the kids, a spa and a coffee shop for the oldies, and extreme activities such as a zip line and a sky bicycle for anyone wanting an adrenaline fix.
It is the perfect place to schedule a family outing and we recommend you stay overnight.
It is impossible to get bored in Bacolod City, what with all of these places to visit. Hopefully this list will vet travellers’ curiosity and have them grinning from ear to ear as they troop to the City of Smiles and its environs.