Negros Occidental has a number of golf courses. Marapara Golf and Country Club is in the northern part of Bacolod. Take the Bata road going east and travel straight til you see the country club's sign. Another favorite of Bacolod players is the Binitin Golf Club which is just a little bit past the Bacolod-Murcia border. Victorias Milling Compound, 45 kilometers north of Bacolod also has a golf course.
So, there is a local legend here about a woman who was banished and went off to the hills and somehoe turned into a mountain. Locals will point out that the mountain range resembles a nude woman who is laying on her back. I would argue that any mountain range would fit that desription, but it is a beautiful sight.
Flying foxes, or fruit bats, are all over the place here, yet they are an endangered species. Locals do eat these sometimes. If you look into the trees your will see them hanging upside down. The best time to see them in flight is around dusk where hundreds will circle the sky and screech in high pitch tones. These things are big, with about a 3 foot wingspan.
I actually shot some great video of some flying, but I'm having trouble uploading it. Check back because the video is very impressive.
Everyone told us we had to go up 7 falls. Being a big fan of waterfalls, we quickly found a guide and negotiated a price (tips, they work for whatever you feel like giving them.) The climb is sometimes steep, but nothing someone in decent shape should shy away from. The falls themselves are beautiful and you may focus just on them, but as you look at the landscape surround the falls, it will take your breath away. Simply beautiful. The trek also takes you though a small village where natives live in bamboo huts. These may be the happiest poor people I've ever seen, their friendly smiles are heartwarming. It takes about an hour to hike to the seventh fall, which can be exhausting because of the heat, but you can always cool off in the chilly water.
the sulphur springs are hot enough to cook and egg, in fact they smell a bit like rotten eggs, but a dip here can be very relaxing. If it gets too hot there are regular swimming pools nearby that you can cool off in. You won't see many kids in this pool due to the heat (although they are allowed) and that is a bonus in my book :)
Balaring in Silay is a place where you can relax & enjoy sea breeze, fascinate your eyes with green scenery & amuse your ears with the sounds of birds. This eco-tourism area for mangrove reforestation started in 1996. Here you will see different species of mangrove trees & creatures that thrive like fish, crabs & seashells. You can also rent a cottage for picnic with family & friends. The coastal area could be viewed from a bamboo watch tower called Tom Tower. Donations are welcome. Opens 7am-6pm.
Brgy Balaring is also famous for its fresh seafood. There are several eateries lining the bay.
Nature's Village Resort is located along the highway of Talisay City, just 10-15 minutes from Bacolod City. The resort has a driving range, tennis court, restaurant, resort swimming pool, kiddie pool, children's park, gazebos and picnic grove, function hall, and standard hotel.
Take your pick at various goodies on display at Merci Pasalubong Center. You can present your plane or bus tickets to get a 10% discount. We bought 6 boxes of biscocho, polvoron, barquillos & mango tarts back home. Check your items coz the sales lady can be careless. She forgot to pack the rest of the barquillos we paid for that she left in the counter. There are branches of Merci's in SM City, Araneta & Lacson Streets. We bought our pasalubong from SM City. There's also a TV screen there showing the process of how their various goodies are made. Piaya is also very famous but we found it too sweet.
The City Plaza across San Sebastian Cathedral provides a cool place for relaxing after a stroll around the city. It has benches under shady trees, where cultural events are often held on Sunday afternoons & special occasions.
San Sebastian Church is made of coral stones from Guimaras while the wooden parts were made of hardwood from Palawan. This huge structure looks imposing & grand. You wouldn't miss this church coz it's located at the downtown area of Bacolod City across the public plaza. It's just a short walking distance from SM City.
ANP Negros Showroom has a wide display of local crafts & workmanship. It showcases here the creativity of the Negrense, their talent and ingenuity. Their products are all created by local manufacturers. You can buy gifts here as pasalubong to bring back home.
Negros Forest Ecological Foundation is a non-profit making, non-governmental organization dedicated to protect, conserve and restore the Negros environment and to safeguard the sustainable use of its resources for the present and future generations.
I loved our visit to Negros Museum. The guide is very informative & friendly. She happens to be a Cebuana also so she mixed English & Visayan languages. The museum has full of historical anecdotes of the elite families of hacienderos as well as their old memorabilias. I particularly enjoyed the Doll Museum with collections coming from all over the world. Quite interesting sugar & other Negros tales from our guide.
Opens from Monday-Saturday, 9am to 6pm. Entrance Fee P40.
Tip: Picture taking is not allowed inside the museum.
After our visit to Guintubdan Falls, our guide informed us that there's a cold spring nearby just a few minutes ride from the falls. When we arrived there, the spring was so inviting that we took a quick dip for a few minutes. It was so cold that we soaked only for a while. Anyway it was getting dark & we had to hurry back. Otherwise, it was a very refreshing dip. Aside from us, there were locals also swimming at the pool. Cottages are available for rent.
We made a side trip to Guintubdan Nature Camp/Falls after visiting La Carlota City. It was about 30 mins or more up the foothills of Mt. Kanlaon along cemented road. At the receiving area, we were informed that we had to walk down 300 steps to see the falls with a guide for P50. Be careful in dealing with those steps coz it tends to be slippery especially during rainy days. My mom slipped but luckily she was alright. We requested for an improvised cane to aid her thru the remaining trek to the falls. You can soak yourself at the falls but we just splash cool water on us after the hot walk. It will take around 20 mins to reach the falls.
You can also visit the nearby Rafael Salas Park and Nature Center which is a nice forest park with city view. Pity we were not able to coz it was getting dark & it was a long way back.
Tip: You can take the shortcut road that will lead you direct to Bago City, next to Bacolod instead of going back to La Carlota. We took this route returning to Bacolod.
52 San Sebastian Street, ex. Bacolod Executive Inn, Bacolod, 6100, Philippines
Good for: Families
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