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Iloilo, Guimaras and Bacolod: Travel Guide and Itinerary


Have you ever had a food trip in Iloilo? Explore the island of Guimaras and taste its sweetest mango? How about a trip to the city of smiles and experience the happiest festival in the Philippines? If not, here's a travel guide and itinerary that can help you out!

How To Get There

Iloilo City is located in the province of Iloilo in Panay Island, Western Visayas and just beside it is the island of Guimaras. Bacolod City is located on the northwestern coast of the Province of Negros Occidental or Negros Island Region now.
Guimaras Island is seen from Iloilo City Hall
FROM MANILA/CEBU- ILOILO
Air and sea travel are available from Manila/Cebu to Iloilo. Direct flights from NAIA/Mactan-Cebu International Airport to Iloilo International Airport is around 45 minutes.
 Taking a ferry is much longer. From Manila to Iloilo, it is around 22 hours and 14 hours From Cebu
  • By air, PAL, Cebu Pacific, CebGo and AirAsia have Manila/Cebu to Iloilo flights. Cebu Pacific and AirAsia usually have promo flights that are cheaper.
  • In Iloilo Airport, there are shuttles that you can ride to the city proper/SM Iloilo for PhP 50.00 or cab that can take you directly to your accommodation for PhP 300.00.
Iloilo City Hall
FROM MANILA/CEBU/ILOILO - BACOLOD
Bacolod is accessible by air travel from Manila and Cebu and sea travel is available from Manila, Cebu, and Iloilo. It's a 45-minute flight from Manila and 30-minute flight from Cebu. Sea travel from Manila is around 21 hours. Land travel is also an option when coming from Cebu. For Iloilo, it is around an hour ferry ride.

  • For air travel, Major airlines mentioned above have flights to Bacolod. The airport is located in Silay City, 15-20 minutes away from Bacolod City. 
  • By land travel from Cebu, you can take a Ceres bus bound to Bacolod.
  • Fast crafts have routes from Iloilo to Bacolod vice versa.
Provincial Capitol of Negros Occidental
Ferry Terminal in Iloilo
FROM ILOILO/BACOLOD - GUIMARAS
Guimaras island is between the island of Panay and Negros. The only way to get to the island is via sea travel from Iloilo and Bacolod since there are no commercial flights available here.

  • From Iloilo, go to Parola/Ortiz Wharf then take a boat ride to Guimaras. The boat fare is PhP 14.00 per person and travel time is around 15 minutes.
  • From Bacolod, go to Pulupandan Wharf then take a pump boat to San Lorenzo, Guimaras. Travel time is around 45 minutes and the fare is PhP 75.00.
Ortiz Wharf in Iloilo

Where To Stay

In Iloilo City, most accommodations are hotels, hostels, and pension houses, while, in Bacolod and nearby towns, there are hotels, pension houses, and resorts. In Guimaras, accommodations are mostly beach resorts. Here are some places you can stay.

ILOILO
Jaro Bellevue Pensionne
GUIMARAS
Raymen Beach Resort
BACOLOD
Guest's accommodation in Mambukal Resort

Where To Eat

This trip is more of a food trip than a travel trip! LOL! Anyways, here are some food establishments and restaurants that I have tried out and I suggest that you try it too!
  • Netong's La Paz Batchoy,  La Paz, Iloilo City - For authentic La Paz Batchoy, I recommend this place. It's located just inside La Paz Public Market.
    Netong's La Paz Batchoy
  • Madge Cafe, La Paz, Iloilo City - The best native coffee in town! Perfect to pair with that Batchoy. Also located inside La Paz Public Market.
    Madge Cafe
  • Roberto's, JM Basa St. Iloilo City - Try out their huge siopao! A nice food establishment along JM Basa St.
    Roberto's
  • Patpat’s Kansi House, Jaro, Iloilo City - Kansi is the Ilonggo version of bulalo. The restaurant is located on Dalan E. Lopez road, near Jaro Plaza.
    Patpat's Kansi House
  • Pitstop Restaurant, San Miguel, Jordan, Guimaras  - This restaurant is known for its Mango Pizza. If the restaurant is full, you can also try the nearby restaurant The Grillers.
    The Grillers by Pitstop
  • Aida's Chicken, Manokan Country, Bacolod - One of the famous restaurant in Manokan Country which serves the best and authentic Bacolod chicken Inasal.
    Manokan Country (Aida's with that big chicken statue at the left)
  • El Ideal Bakery, Rizal St, Silay City - One of the oldest bakery in Negros Island and home of the Guapple Pie.
    El Ideal Bakery
  • Calea, Lacson St, Bacolod City - For dessert lovers, you must definitely try their cakes, especially the White Chocolate Cheesecake, don't ask just do it!
    Calea Pastries and Coffee
  • Aboy's Restaurant,  Liroville Subd, Singcang, Bacolod  - One of the popular restaurants in Bacolod, I really liked their seafood dishes! 
    Aboy's Restaurant

Attractions and Activities

Make the most out of your Iloilo, Guimaras and Bacolod trip by seeing some of these attractions and doing some of these activities!
  • Heritage/City Tour in Iloilo - Iloilo is very rich in culture and heritage. The city is home to many Spanish-colonial churches, ancestral houses, and century-old monuments and structures. There are a lot of things you can see walking around the city! You can also read our walking tour in this post.
    Jaro Cathedral
  • Food Trip in Iloilo - Aside from the Spanish-colonial churches and century-old structures, Iloilo is also famous for its signature Ilonggo dishes. Try the famous La Paz Batchoy and other dishes like Kansi, Pancit Molo, and Biscocho.
    La Paz Batchoy
  • Dinagyang Festival! - Celebrated every January, Dinagyang is a religious and cultural festival in Iloilo City. A popular and one of the most awaited event in the festival Ati Tribe competition. The city also hosts the Paraw Regatta Festival every February where many Paraw (a Visayan double outrigger sail boat) races.

  • Explore Guimaras! - Have a land tour via motorcycle or multi-cab. You can visit different tourist destinations like The Smallest Plaza, Windmills in San Lorenzo, Holy Family Hills, Trappist Monastery, Guisi Lighthouse and many more.
    Windmills around San Lorenzo, Guimaras
  • Island Hopping in Guimaras! - See the natural beauty of Guimaras by having an island hopping tour. Visit the beautiful islets and pristine white-sand beaches of the island.
    Island hopping
  • Taste the Sweetest Mango - Taste one of the sweetest mangoes in the world. You also try the famous Mango Pizza in Pitstop Restaurant.
    Mango Pizza!
  • Visit The Ruins in Talisay - Have a romantic dinner or lunch in one of the most famous landmarks in Negros Island.
    The Ruins of Talisay City
  • Have an Ancestral Tour in Silay's Museum Houses - Visit the 'Paris of Negros Island' to see some of its ancestral houses
    Museum house of Silay City
  • Food trip again! - Be sure to taste the pride of Bacolod, the 'Chicken Inasal' in Manokan Country in Bacolod and satisfy that dessert craving in Calea.
    Desserts at Calea
    Chicken Inasal
  • Mambukal Mountain Resort in Murcia - If you're looking for an adventure then you should go to this resort in Murcia, Negros Island. The most popular activity here the hike to the seven waterfalls, but there are also other activities you can try that you can read here.
    Mambukal Resort
  • Masskara Festival! - Dubbed as the happiest festival in the Philippines, Masskara Festival is celebrated every October. A week long of celebration and party in the main street of Bacolod City. It's raining Chicken Inasal!
    Electric Masskara!


Itinerary

This is our 5-day, 4-night itinerary for our Iloilo-Guimaras-Bacolod trip. The activities included on our trip can be pushed to a 4-day itinerary, but since we also went to the Masskara Festival, we added an extra day to it.

  • Day 1 - Hello Iloilo!
    • 09:00 AM - ETA Iloilo International Airport
    • 10:00 AM - Check-in to hotel (45 minutes to 1-hour ride from airport to city proper)
    • 12:00 NN - Lunch at Tatoy's Manokan Seafood Restaurant or PatPat's Kansi House
    • 01:00 PM - City Tour!
    • 08:00 PM - Back to hotel/inn
  • Day 2 - Explore the island of Guimaras!
    • 06:00 AM - Wake up call/Breakfast at Netong's La Paz Batchoy
    • 07:00 AM - ETD Iloilo to Guimaras (15-20 minute boat ride)
    • 07:30 AM - ETA Guimaras/Register at tourist information center
    • 08:30 AM - Guimaras Island Tour!
    • 06:00 PM - Check-in at beach resort and rest
  • Day 3 - Island Hopping in Guimaras!
    • 05:30 AM - Wake up call/breakfast
    • 06:00 AM - Island hopping!
    • 09:00 AM - Finished island hopping/Free time
    • 12:00 NN - Checkout to resort/Lunch
    • 02:30 PM - ETA Iloilo Port
    • 04:30 PM - ETD Iloilo to Bacolod (1-hour ferry ride)
    • 05:30 PM - ETA Bacolod City
    • 06:00 PM - Check-in to hotel/Dinner (stay out for MassKara Festival)
  • Day 4 - Maayong aga Bacolod!
    • 07:00 AM - Wakeup call/Breakfast
    • 08:00 AM - Visit The Ruins in Talisay
    • 10:30 AM - Tour at Silay's Museum Houses
    • 12:30 NN - Go back to Bacolod/Lunch at Aboy's
    • 01:30 PM - Freetime/Explore around Bacolod City, after all, it's Masskara Week!
    • 06:00 PM - Dinner at Manokan Country
    • 07:00 PM - Watch Electric Masskara Parade/Party!
  • Day 5 - Mambukal Waterfalls and Going Home :(
    • 06:00 AM - Wakeup call/Breakfast
    • 06:30 AM - ETD Bacolod to Murcia (travel time is around an hour or more)
    • 08:-- AM - Hike the waterfalls of Mambukal Resort
    • 12:00 NN - Lunch/Go back to Bacolod
    • 01:30 PM - Prepare and pack up 
    • 02:00 PM - Buy Pasalubong!

Masskara Festival

Expenses

Here's a breakdown of our expenses during our trip. This only includes necessary expenses like fares, food, tour guides, entrance fees, and accommodations. Tips and other expenses like "pasalubong" are not included.
  • Day 1: Iloilo
    • Fare (Van from airport to SM Iloilo): PhP 50.00 per person
    • Food (Lunch at Fastfood): PhP 100.00 per person
    • Fare (Taxi from SM Iloilo to Jaro): PhP 70.00
    • Accommodation (AC Room at Jaro Bellevue): PhP 800 per night for 2 = PhP 400.00
    • Fare (Jeep from Jaro to City Proper): PhP 7.00 per person
    • Food (Snacks at Roberto's): PhP 75.00 per person
    • Entrance Fee (Museo Iloilo) : PhP 50.00
    • Food (Dinner at Patpat's Kansi House): PhP 100.00 per person
    • Fare (Jeep from Fort San Pedro back to inn): PhP 10.00
    • Total: PhP 862.00
  • Day 2: Iloilo and Guimaras
    • Fare (Jeep from Jaro to La Paz): PhP 7.00 per person
    • Food (Breakfast at Netong's and Madge Cafe): PhP 120.00 per person
    • Fare (Jeep from La Paz to Ortiz Wharf  ): PhP 10.00 per person
    • Fare (Boat from Iloilo to Jordan, Guimaras): PhP 14.00 per person
    • Tour Fee (Triycle land tour in Guimaras): PhP 1300 good for 2-4 = PhP 1300.00
    • Food (Lunch at The Griller's Restaurant): PhP 800.00 good for 2 = PhP 400.00
    • Entrance Fee (Parola Lighthouse): PhP 20.00 per person
    • Accommodation (Fan room Raymen Beach Resort) PhP 950 per night for 2 = PhP 475
    • Food (Dinner at Raymen's restaurant): PhP 115.00 per person
    • Total: PhP 2461.00

  • Day 3: Guimaras, Iloilo, and Bacolod
    • Food (Breakfast at Raymen's restaurant): PhP 80.00 per person
    • Tour Fee (2-hour Island Hopping): PhP 650.00 good for 2-4 = PhP 325.00
    • Entrance Fee (SEAFDEC): PhP 25.00 per person
    • Food (Lunch at Rayment's restaurant): PhP 150.00 per person
    • Fare (Tricycle from Raymen to the main road): PhP 25.00 per person
    • Fare (Jeep from the main road to Jordan Port): PhP 30.00 per person
    • Fare (Boat from Jordan Port, Guimaras to Ortiz Wharf, Iloilo): PhP 14.00 per person
    • Fare (Tricycle from Ortiz Wharf to the main road): PhP 15.00 per person
    • Fare (Jeep from the main road to Ferry Terminal): PhP 8.00 per person
    • Fare (Fast craft roundtrip Iloilo-Bacolod-Iloilo): PhP 460.00 per person
    • Entrance Fee (Terminal Fee): PhP 30.00 per person
    • Fare (Tricyclce from Bacolod Port to SM Bacolod): PhP 25.00 per person
    • Dinner (Street foods): PhP 50.00 per person
    • Accommodation (AC Room Pleasant Travelers): PhP 1280.00 good for 2 = Php 640.00
    • Total: PhP 1877.00

  • Day 4: Bacolod, Talisay, and Silay
    • Fare (Jeep to Northbound Terminal): PhP 7.00 per person
    • Fare (Tricycle from terminal to The Ruins): PhP 40.00 per person 
    • Entrance Fee (The Ruins): PhP 95.00 per person
    • Food (Breakfast at The Ruins): PhP 245.00 per person
    • Fare (The Ruins to Northbound Terminal) PhP 30.00 per person
    • Fare (Bus Northbound terminal to Silay): PhP 15.00 per person
    • Entrance Fee (Museum Houses): PhP 60 per person * 3 houses = PhP 180.00
    • Food (Snacks at El Ideal Bakery): PhP 100.00 per person
    • Fare (Multicab from Silay to Northbound Terminal): PhP 8.00 per person
    • Fare (Jeep from Northbound Terminal to Inn): PhP 7.00 per person
    • Food (Dinner at Aida's Chicken): PhP 140.00 per person
    • Food (Coffee and desserts at Calea): PhP 180.00 per person
    • Accommodation (AC Room Pleasant Travelers): PhP 1280.00 good for 2 = Php 640.00
    • Total: PhP 1687.00

  • Day 5: Bacolod and Murcia
    • Fare (Taxi to Aboy's Restaurant): PhP 90 / 2 = PhP 45.00 per person
    • Food (Breakfast at Aboy's): PhP 425.00 per person
    • Fare (Jeep from Aboy's to Libertad): PhP 7.00 per person
    • Fare (Minibus from Libertad to Murcia): PhP 17.00 per person
    • Fare (Jeep from Murcia to Mambukal): PhP 12.00 per person
    • Entrance Fee (Mambukal Resort): PhP 50.00 per person
    • Tour Fee (Tour guide Fee): PhP 200.00 / 2 = PhP 100.00
    • Tour Fee (Roundtrip habal-habal ride to jump-off point): PhP 100.00 per person
    • Fare (Minibus from Mambukal to Bacolod): PhP 30.00 per person.
    • Fare (Jeep from Libertad to Inn): PhP 8.00 per person
    • Fare (Taxi from inn to Bacolod Port): PhP 80.00
    • Total: PhP 974.00

  • Total Expense: PhP 7861.00
What are you waiting for? Let's go!


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Hey there, thanks for reading! I hope you enjoyed reading my article and helped you out with some travel tips and ideas. Please do leave a comment if you have some comments or suggestions and I'll gladly answer it. Cheers!

1 comments:

  1. Bacolod food is really good! I fell in love with them at the first time. Bacolod is one of my favorite places in the Philippines. Honestly I am thinking to move in the City, preferably on this house and lot for sale http://suntrust.com.ph/bacolod/

    ReplyDelete