Dubbed the “sugarbowl of the Philippines” because of its deep roots in the sugar industry, Negros Occidental is indeed a sweet destination filled with rustic heritage destinations and historical landmarks that make for a nostalgic and romantic getaway. From grand heritage houses, nature-based resorts, and idyllic beaches, Negros Occidental will sweep you off your feet.

Don Victor Fernandez Gaston Ancestral House (Balay Negrense) in Silay. Photo courtesy of the Department of Tourism.

Silay Heritage Houses. According to the National Historical Commission, there are over 30 heritage homes in Silay City’s city center. See the 19th-century splendor of Don Victor Fernandez Gaston Ancestral House or Balay Negrense, and the stark hues of the Bernardino Jalandoni House or “Pink House” completed in 1908 and the 1930s Balay Verde or “Green House” – which also houses the Culture, Arts and Tourism Office of Silay.

Sugar Beach. Photo courtesy of the Department of Tourism.

Sugar Beach. This kilometer-long beach, while being one of the main beaches of Sipalay, retains its pristine beauty. Aptly named for its brown sands (which one might say resembles brown sugar) and clear waters, it offers a sweet and easily accessible beach getaway fringed by tropical foliage.

Rapha Valley in Salvador Benedicto. Photo courtesy of the Department of Tourism.

Rapha Valley. This health and wellness destination in Salvador Benedicto offers a holistic experience with organic farm tours, a healthy menu which highlights the medicinal and nutritional value of herbs and vegetables, and several accommodations options which combine native and modern touches.

Mambukal Mountain Resort. Photo courtesy of the Department of Tourism.

Mambukal Mountain Resort. This government-run mountain resort in Murcia is located next to Mount Kanlaon, acting as a gateway for Mount Kanlaon adventures. The resort itself sits at around 1,200 feet above sea level and is spread out over 23.6 hectares and is known for its hot, sulfuric springs. It was originally built in 1927 by Japanese architect Kokichi Paul Ishiwata as a bath house and picnic garden.

The Ruins in Talisay City. Photo courtesy of the Department of Tourism.

The Ruins. The Ruins is one of Negros Occidental’s most iconic architectural attractions. Located in the heart of what was once a 440-hectare sugar plantation, it features the ruins of 1900s Italian-inspired architecture which was once the ancestral home mansion of the family of Don Mariano Ledesma Lacson and Maria Braga Lacson. It was razed by guerilla forces during World War II to prevent the Japanese forces from using it as one of their strongholds, but its skeletal remnants continue to stand prominently today.

Casa Gamboa in Silay City. Photo courtesy of the Department of Tourism.

Casa Gamboa. This 1939 American-style chalet was built by Aguinaldo Gamboa and Alicia Lucero, and is famous for having been used by General Douglas MacArthur when the American forces were in the Philippines. It now serves as an iconic setting for a bespoke dining experience offered by homeowner Reena Gamboa who inherited the house from her aunt, the late culinary icon Doreen Gamboa Fernandez.

Discover more destinations to see, experience, and savor in Negros Occidental. Visit these links to map out your next journey across the Philippines. 

  1. Escape to These 7 Scenic Secluded Beaches in the Philippines
  2. Charlie Co Tells the Story of the World on Canvas
  3. Explore Filipino Culture in These Historic Cities

Travel Safely!

All these tourist destinations have health and safety protocols in place to protect locals and visitors alike. Everyone is expected to comply by wearing face masks, regularly washing their hands, and practicing physical distancing.

To check out up-to-date information regarding local destinations that are open and the safety protocols and requirements needed for each location, you may visit philippines.travel/safetrip or download the Travel Philippines app at app.philippines.travel, Apple Store, or Google Playstore.