Chicken inasal, Masskara Festival, Piaya, and The Ruins, these are just some of the things that remind us about the city of smiles – Bacolod. With all these in mind (chicken inasal), we immediately booked a flight to venture forth Bacolod and discover more of its marvels.
We will try our very best to give you an idea and what you need to know when you visit Bacolod. This is the first part of a 3 day travel itinerary with a sidetrip to Dumaguete for the Manjuyod White Sand Bar (will be covered in another post).
Lakawon Island Beach Resort and Spa
Dubbed as the Boracay of Negros, Lakawon Island is just an hour bus ride from Bacolod to Cadiz Viejo with 10 minutes of tricycle ride and a 20 minute boat ride to get to this amazing white sand beach destination.
It is located along the Guimaras Strait and is home to the Asia’s biggest floating bar – the Tawhai Floating Bar (as claimed by the resort).
A quick island getaway, this 32 acre of powdery white sand resort offers day tours and overnight accommodations and also a variety of activities for everyone (kayak, banana boat, snokeling, beach volleyball).
Tawhai Floating Bar
The main attraction however, is the Tawhai Floating Bar. For the entrance fee of 250 pesos with a complimentary beer or juice, you can enjoy the scenic view of the whole island and some cocktails to boot for the whole hipster vibe that the bar presents. People can jump from the bar and take a quick dip every now and then during the ride.
For your reference, below is the schedule of the bar.
Day Tour Guests: 10:00am – 4:30pm.
Monday – Thursday: 10:00am – 5:00pm
Friday – Sunday: 10:00am – 7:00pm
For Day Tour Guests, the cottage huts price range is between 500 to 1000 pesos. There are a lot of available colorful bean bags scattered around the place that guests can use for free.
For Overnight Guests, you can book a room good for 4 people for 3,500 pesos (no breakfast included). The 10 bathroom available is shared with the other guests and there is no wifi access in the island. The mobile network reception is excellent for Globe users.
Outside food and drinks are not allowed inside the resort. They have a restaurant that serves very affordable food choices for everyone.
Lakawon Island Beach Resort is still constructing additional accommodations and attractions for their guests and we are very excited to visit again to see the full potential of the resort.
How to get there:
From Bacolod, take the bus in Ceres bus from Bacolod North Bus Terminal going to Cadiz. The bus terminal is at least 10-15 minutes by car from the airport. Advise the driver to drop you off at Lakawon terminal. Take a tricycle ride to the port (120 pesos good for 4-6pax). Finally, take the boat ride to the island that is under the management of the resort. We are a group of 4 and are not enough to get the boat going and advised to wait for other guests, or pay the full price of 1520 good for 4pax inclusive of everything.
Here is a quick breakdown of the expenses.
Bus – P111.00/person
Tricycle – P120.00/4-6 persons
Boat Ride – P150.00/person
Entrance Fee – P110.00/person
Terminal Fee – P20.00/person
Tawhai Floating Bar – P250.00/person
Accommodation – P3,500.00/4 persons
Food (Dinner and Breakfast) – P400-500.00/person
Bacolod City Day Tour
We started our day with one of our most anticipated locations – the Manokan Country.
The Manokan Country is located at the city proper and is home to a whole street of restaurants serving the arguably most popular dish in Bacolod, the Chicken Inasal.
True to its reputation, the Bacolod Chicken Inasal is one of the juiciest and tastiest chicken we have ever had. You will get to enjoy this with unlimited chicken oil for only 75 pesos (rice not included).
Aside from chicken inasal, they also serve fresh and affordable oysters for only 50 pesos per order. And the Cansi which is Bacolod’s own version of the classic bulalo. It is best eaten with calamansi added to its soup.
Capitol Park and Lagoon
The Capitol Park and Lagoon is one of the famous landmarks in Bacolod City. It is a man-made lagoon that is home to some local fish and the park is best for leisurely walks and picnics. San Sebastian Cathedral is a few blocks away from the park if you want to make a quick spiritual sidetrip.
Felicia’s Pastry Shop
Bacolod is the sugar capital of the Philippines and is well known for their pastries.
Felicia’s is among the top cafe when it comes to desserts.
It is just across the street from Calea – also serves amazing drinks and desserts. Cake slices range from 100-150 pesos.
Bacolod Baywalk and Pope John Paul II Tower
If you are looking for a dose of adrenaline rush in Bacolod, the Race Kart in Bacolod Baywalk is just the right place for you.
For only 200 pesos with 4 laps, this will surely satify your need for speed.
The entrance in Baywalk is 20 pesos for adults and 10 for students. The perfect time to come visit the place is during sunset. Prior to reaching the Baywalk, you may take a visit to Pope John Paul II Tower and climb up to the top floor for a bird’s eyeview of the city (entrance fee same as Baywalk). The 7 floors tower is full of memorabilias about the late pope from when he visited last February 1981.
The Ruins is one of the sought-after heritage destinations in Bacolod because of its rich yet tragic backstory. Long story short, the now ruined mansion was built in the memory of Maria and her still born baby when they passed away. If you are familiar with Roger the bubbly and charming tour guide, he is still there to tell the history of the place.
How to get there:
Take a jeepney going Bata-Libertad and ask the driver to drop you off at the tricycle terminal for The Ruins.
We checked in at The Suites at Calle Nueva and the place is pretty nice for its price. The accommodation for 2 persons is only 1,500 pesos and is inclusive of a breakfast buffet.
To wrap up the day, we headed over to BongBongs to buy pasalubongs and please definitely grab the Piaya, Butterscotch, and Napoleones – yum!
For our third day in Negros, we took a bus to Bais, Dumaguete for the Manjuyod White Sand Bar. This will be discussed in our next post.