I was able to visit the city of Bacolod twice, one in 2017 and the latest was last week of March this year. At a glance, the city, like any other highly urbanized cities in the country, presents a vibrant environment that is highlighted by both commerce and tourism, a common identity for chartered cities that represents as capital hub of a certain region or province, in its case Negros Occidental.
As a gateway to Western Visayas, Bacolod very well denotes a healthy locality, evident of which are the remarkable citations it gained such as “Best Place to Live in the Philippines,” and “Center of Excellence for Information Technology and Business Process Operations,” by the Department of Science and Technology, among others. It was also previously considered as the “Most Livable City in the Country,” in year 2012.
Although it is often dubbed as the “City of Smiles” but I have yet to really discover the character of the people of Bacolod why they are being called with such a friendly nickname. The Masskara Festival, which became a very popular event in the country, is perhaps a culmination of the friendliness of the Bacolod people.
Other than the aforesaid, I discovered several good places which can be worthy stopovers in Bacolod and nearby cities. The most dominant structure is The Ruins Mansion. Although located in Talisay City, the Ruins Mansion is associated into Bacolod’s collection of tourist attractions and is an integral component of its tour packages. The Ruins was built in 1900 by the family of Don Mariano Ledesma Lacson and Maria Braga Lacson.
The Ruins as well embodies that Negros Occidental is the sugarcane plantation capital of the Visayas as it was erected in a huge sugarcane plantation in Talisay City.
Inspired by an Italian architecture, The Ruins is considered as the Taj Majal of the Philippines, and is very evident that its interior designs are relics of significant events and facts worthy to be preserved for the next generations to witness.
Bacolod also boosts of its delectable variety of foods. In my recent visit there I was brought to Diotay’s Famous Paluto Restaurant, an establishment that offers range of sea foods items everybody should not miss dropping by especially for sea foods lovers. It is located in Gatuslao St., Bacolod City Proper.
Bacolod 18th Street Palapala Seafood Grill is another must-visit food house in Bacolod. While seafood items are typical dishes here, I cannot get over with its Pork Sinigang and Tinolang Manok, perhaps the best tasting tinola in the country.
If you are stuck in the heart of Bacolod City and have no option for an overnight stay, I recommend Check Inn Pension House located in Ponce Building, Luzuriaga St., just walking distance away from the old Bacolod City Hall. It is a cheap inn that is very accessible to the city’s commercial district.
Want some more instagrammable sites in Bacolod? Try visiting the new City Hall complex along its national highway. The Provincial Capitol Building is another worthy site for a quick visit.