Dumaguete is a wonderful city in Negros Oriental. It is a retirement destination that is brimming with things to do for tourists. All your dining and entertainment needs can be filled in Downtown Dumaguete, but there are also great daytrips in the area around Dumaguete City.
RED ROCK HOT SPRINGS, VALENCIA
One of the closest and most popular day trips is Red Rock Hot Springs in Valencia. Max and Yvonne seldom tell anyone about their secluded little favorite hot spring but it is becoming so well known that it is time to let you in on the secret.
Its only 10 km from downtown Dumaguete. That’s 20 minutes by motorcycle and the road is 99% good. Head towards the geothermal plant, west of Valencia until you see a sign on your right for the Hot Spring. Its only a few hundred meters off the highway.
Admission is a low 25 pesos per person. Table space is rented out for additional charge or just go straight to the pool. It’s small, but luxurious. The tourists are friendly and the locals are curious so there are lots of smiles and good conversations with happy strangers. Another happy surprise is the price of drinks and snacks. No overcharging here.
TWIN LAKES NATURE PARK, SIBULAN
Another great day trip from Dumaguete City takes us north to Twin Lakes Nature Park in Balinsasayao. This Nature Park is a conservation effort that can be reached via the National Highway through Sibulan. The actual park covers an area that includes parts of Sibulan, San Jose, and Valencia.
Busses and jeepneys travel the National Highway and it is quite convenient to ask to be dropped off at the two lakes road and then hire a habal habal (motorcycle) to drive you up the long road to the nature park. Go early in the day as evening comes fast in the mountains and you will still have to make your way back to the highway and catch some transport back to Dumaguete. Its cool in the mountains so Twin Lakes is a great place to go to escape some of the summer heat.
WEDNESDAY MARKET, ZAMBOANGUITA
Our third suggested day trip is best done on a Wednesday morning. That is when all the activity happens at the market in Zamboanguita. It’s a half hour south of Dumaguete city center and accessible by Ceres bus. The main attraction, for locals, seems to be the livestock auction. Tourists will find shops teeming with local tools, trinkets, food and souvenirs. Local artisans will make furniture or artwork for you if you have time to wait. Everything here is on Filipino time.
Near the market is a foreign own cafe and dive shop called Dream Diving and Beach Resort in Zamboanguita. Great western food at an economic price. It can be hard to find this gem. If you have trouble, just walk along the beach from the market at low tide and you will find it.
Those are 3 great day trips that Max and Yvonne like to go on. We hope you enjoy them as much.