Friday, June 6, 2014

Easter 2014: Bacolod, Part 1

My last series of travel posts is from my trip last Easter to Bacolod and Iloilo. Since my dad's close friend grew up in Iloilo, he and his friends thought to visit here and have his friend show us around. As usual our flight was during ungodly hours of the night and when we arrived at around 7 in the morning, it was just go go go from then on!

When we all got on our bus, we were all given these Viaje Negrense eco bags to put some of our stuff in like souvenirs. Inside was our itinerary and a few candies just in case of car sickness, I guess?

For breakfast, our first stop was the El Ideal Bakery.

This is as good a place as any to get your hands on all the local delicacies and treats that you plan on taking home with you or having as a snack in your trip!

According to our guide, the Angel Cookies are one of the most ideal (LOL unintentional pun) treats to take home because other than being delicious, they have long shelf lives.

In the bakery, they also have a restaurant which is where we had our breakfast.

Also, the bakery sells organic soaps and other cosmetics! I got this oatmeal soap because my skin had been really really acting up lately, so I thought to try this one because oatmeal's known to have soothing properties.

Snapped a photo of this because I just really appreciated how this one done in ink. All the architecture class feels.

Again, this bakery sells almost every kind of delicacy you know. There are even pies!

Our less-than-filling breakfast. I was honestly disappointed at the small serving. :(

Old school Spanish architecture is pretty common in Bacolod. You can see that a lot of the history remains here.

From the bakery, it was a short walk to visit the San Diego Pro-Cathedral. Mainly famous for being the first church in Silay, Bacolod to have a domed roof inspired by the St. Peter's Basilica.

By looking at this photo, you'd think that you were in Europe. Haha! As you can see the dome is really pretty and quite reminiscent of St. Peter's Basilica!

However, the real church was actually behind it. This was built way way before the prettier one before.

Long ago, this was their cathedral. In the open air.

As for the interior of the big church, this was what the being the underneath the dome was like.

Afterwards, it was on to the bus again and it was about a two-hour drive to the next location. That meant a lot of naps for me! Haha!

St. Joseph The Worker Parish is another famous church in Bacolod and even though I wasn't really a huge fan of visiting all these churches, every single one I visited was honestly really cool in their own way. In this case, the parish was simple to look at but had details that are mind-blowing.

The design on its facade is actually made from recycled shards of colored glass. The entire image was made out of tiny shards of glass which makes anyone wonder if they had the patience to commit to such a work of art.

Inside, you can see the world-famous mural as well as well thought-out architecture that even I can't forget. The beams above are engineered to slide against the intersecting trusses during earthquakes which prevents any collapsing!

A close-up of the mural. It literally covers every single surface the entire ceiling of this part of the church.

That's an eclectic design you definitely don't see everywhere.

More glass mosaic art outside.

Probably the church I remember most was our next stop which is the Church of The Cartwheels. It's amazingly rustic and just teeming with history that you can't help but stare at everything. This was built mainly for the farmers in the hacienda where they could pray together.

I can't get over how smart it is to use literal cartwheels for the wall. It's just so awesome to look at!

Even the insides are beautifully crafted and instead of a cross, even a mini statue of Jesus hangs from a cartwheel. Nothing felt unplanned here. Not even a little.

Too many great ideas about designing country homes and themed restaurants come to mind when I review the photos.

The roof looks like something out of a horror movie, to be honest. But it's incredibly in its own way, and the tiny little overlaps just give it a whole new dimension.

And then we were off once more. This time to the famous Ruins made even more famous by their iconic in-house guide, Roger!

We got in from the back because I think it was the only way in. The courtyard out front was surrounded by trees and you can't really get in from there. But anyways, the Ruins was one of the most amazing places we got to see in the entire tour!

It used to be a mansion where a famous haciendero of the old times, Don Mariano Lacson, lived with his family. It was destroyed in an earthquake eventually but the Lacson family decided to leave it like so to preserve the history and show it to the people.

Now, I believe it's become a shooting sight of sorts because this is apparently where Kim Chiu and Coco Martin shot their current show set in the Spanish era, I think. I don't really follow teleseryes anymore so I'm not quite sure.

What made the ruins about ten times better than all of the places is Roger! They mean it when they say he's funny. This guy is an amazing guide because other than being hilarious, he makes learning about the ruins fun. Something about Filipino humor is just so straightforward and funny. Sobrang panalo talaga.

Everything in the Ruins is so photogenic and my brother's GX7 does it justice! I've been using it in trips lately mostly because it's quite hard to move around with my heavy DSLR. I love it and all, but the super sturdy build comes with a weight that demands to be felt. :(

Front view of the Ruins.

From this photo, you can see why it's actually really perfect as a site for shooting TV dramas. You can almost imagine a princess walking this courtyard!

My current wallpaper.

Snuck in this gorgeous shot of the entire Ruins. It was hard too because the sun was merciless. That's the problem when you travel in the Philippines during Easter. It is literally hellish.

The huge gray column in the distance is actually the chimney of the old sugar mill. It's been abandoned which is why a tree is growing out of it.

Thinking about it now, this place would've been perfect for shooting outfit shots! Haha! Unfortunately, the heat makes dressing up unbearable, which is why everything I brought was super comfortable and light and not really blog-worthy. LOL

The second floor of the ruins wasn't any different from the first and no big details come to mind here.

We had lunch at the Chicken House afterwards. It's basically this small restaurant that is clearly a family favorite in Bacolod throughout the decades.

Sadly, the serving here is small again but the food's good. We had the classic Chicken Inasal. Finally authentic and straight from the source! Haha! Apparently, nothing beats the Chicken Inasal at their local manukan which are basically the hole-in-the-wall type of restaurants which we didn't get to try. :(

Outside, vendors were selling Bicho-Bicho which my mother bought and gave me a piece. It's basically deep fried dough that's sugary and really glutinous. It was just enough to top off the small lunch we just had. From there, it was a long ride again to our resort Campuestuhan which I'll be posting soon! :)


  1. Your photos look so amazing tipong I want to hop on a plane and see what you captured in real life.

  2. Lots of memories for my beloved Bacolod City. The places looks stunning especially the The Saint Joseph.

  3. i love the cathedral and yes its look like churches here in France.. i love bacolod i visited the place silay and it was fun..

  4. THis is nice! How much did you pay for this visit?

  5. Thanks for the virtual tour. Ang ganda ng mga sites pala sa Bacolod. Type ko rin kumain doon sa bakery.

  6. I love this post! Ang ganda ng photos :) Thanks for sharing your Bacolod trip!