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24 Hours in Bacolod

by Anna Golez

Only got a day to spend in Bacolod? With this itinerary cheat sheet, you can squeeze in as much sightseeing and food tripping as possible in the City of Smiles without feeling like you’re in a rush.

Morning

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Fuel your day by heading over to Ann Co Cakes. While known for their fantastic desserts (the Chocolate Cake and Frozen Brazo in particular), they also serve Filipino breakfast comfort food as well as French toast and pancakes. With a busy day ahead of you, there's enough reason to order their Big Breakfast platters, which are delightfully named after artists like Warhol, Van Gogh, and Charlie Co, a local artist who happens to be the restaurateur's husband. You’ll find many of his vibrant works displayed in the restaurant.

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After you’ve chowed down, you might wonder where to go next while most of Bacolod is just about to get up. Fortunately, the city’s Central Market is open by the crack of dawn. Do your flea market and ukay-ukay shopping here, and purchase some native coffee and ibos to take home with you.

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Just down the street from Central Market is the Negros Museum, where you’ll find artifacts as well as both historical and contemporary artworks reflecting the life of Negrosanons over time. One of the museum’s highlights is its vast private collection of children’s toys from all over the world.

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A short walk from the museum will lead you to the airy and spacious Capitol Park and Lagoon. The matching sculptures on the opposite ends of the lagoon are by Felix Garzon and Italian artist Francesco Riccardo Monti.

Afternoon

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A trip to Bacolod is not complete without a taste of authentic inasal. There are several places to do just that, but Chicken House is an excellent place for lunch. Don’t be afraid to eat with your hands and be sure to drench your rice in chicken oil!

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If you’ve still got room for dessert, proceed to the popular cake place, Calea. Try their Semifredo, Chocolate Mud Pie, Chocolate Cake, or Blueberry Cheesecake.

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Now that you’re stuffed, relax and take enviable selfies at The Ruins over in Talisay, the city just next to Bacolod. Parts of Don Mariano Ledesma Locsin’s mansion built in the 1900s still stand today, even after the house was ravaged by fire. It’s a beautiful symbol of Negros Island’s bygone days of sugar barons and their families.

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It’s the middle of the afternoon, so it’s clearly time for merienda cena. Good thing Bacolod’s many food institutions offer a wealth of choices. You can have chicken sandwich and pancit palabok at Roli’s, pizza and gelato at Cafe Bob’s, or batchoy at 21.

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As the day dies down, shop for pasalubong and Bacolod delicacies at Pendy’s or, for local crafts, drop by The Negros Showroom. If you prefer not to spend your cash, visit a local art gallery, like House of Frida just above Cafe Bob’s or Charlie Co’s Gallery Orange.

Evening

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You have plenty of dinner options in Bacolod. The Sate Babe, Cheeseburger, and Baby Back Ribs at Bob’s Restaurant will satisfy your carnivore cravings; Kucina Maria Familia is the best mix of fine and family dining; and Cafe Uma serves up great locally-sourced dishes.

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If your sugar levels can still handle the delectable treats the nation’s Sugar Capital has to offer, try the sans rival at Felicia’s—and bring home a box of ensaymada while you’re at it.

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But if you just want to sit back and hang with the locals, sip on a craft cocktail at Quedan, people-watch at Mushu, or grab a pint of craft beer at the more laid-back Tippy’s Bistro.

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Still awake and alive? You should be; Bacolodnons love to stay up late! To satisfy your midnight snack cravings, head to Business Inn, where they’ll serve you their famous Kansi Soup even in the wee hours of the morning. The tangy, comforting soup makes for a memorable last meal in the City of Smiles!

Got more than 24 hours to spare in the City of Smiles? Check out our comprehensive Bacolod travel guide here. While you're at it, browse through exclusives from our partners in Bacolod.

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About Anna
Anna L. Golez is a Bacolod-based writer who only likes to leave the house if there's good food, great company, extraordinary views, and interesting stories.

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