Where is Wester Visayas?

Western Visayas Map

You are in Western Visayas the moment you board a plane or ship for Iloilo, Bacolod, Kalibo, Roxas or Caticlan. 

The mestiza seated near you and 60 percent of all other passengers are Ilonggos, people of the region. On a 2GO ship, you are pampered with other Ilonggos. 82 percent of all aboard, from captain to deckhand (assumed scenario). 

The trip reveals the real Philippines – an archipelago, large and small green islands in placid waters. At the center are Panay, Negros, Guimaras and more than a hundred of tiny others, home of guileless people. 

Their Catholic culture rubs off visitors, their history antedates Julius Caesar, their quaint cities and towns bathe in sunlight, in cool, clean fresh air, their centuries-old industries and arts- the survivors amidst galloping technologies and suffocating dissonant forms – continue to nourish a lifestyle of grace and elegance. 

Hurry or Take Your Time! It's Easy to Get here.

Iloilo, Bacolod, Kalibo, Roxas and Caticlan airports are about an hour from Manila with flights several times daily; from Cebu, much less. By ship, 19 relaxing clock-hours, shorter for scenery, shipboard comfort. 

From Iloilo or Bacolod, go anywhere – Roxas City, Kalibo, San Jose, cities of Negros, any town or barangay. In 1572, Spanish colonizer Miguel Lopez de Legazpi came to Iloilo first and worked his way up to Manila with scantily dressed natives as guides. Today’s guides are professional and trained.

Distance of Towns from Each Other

To get the distance of one place to another, intersect the y-axis with  the x-axis and the intersection is the distance.

Hurry or Take Your Time! It's Easy to Get here.

Iloilo, Bacolod, Kalibo, Roxas and Caticlan airports are about an hour from Manila with flights several times daily; from Cebu, much less. By ship, 19 relaxing clock-hours, shorter for scenery, shipboard comfort. 

From Iloilo or Bacolod, go anywhere – Roxas City, Kalibo, San Jose, cities of Negros, any town or barangay. In 1572, Spanish colonizer Miguel Lopez de Legazpi came to Iloilo first and worked his way up to Manila with scantily dressed natives as guides. Today’s guides are professional and trained.

Hotels everywhere.

You may be out of your hotel most of the time. But in or out, whatever you do or don’t do with recommended hotel rooms, in Iloilo or Bacolod, they’re ready to serve your accommodation needs. 

Of resorts, Guimaras, Boracay, or Sipalay offer similar accommodations in cottages under stately coco palms or near shady cool green trees. Genuinely tropic, tranquilizing or exciting, never boring. In Mambucal, Murcia, Negros Occidental, 1200 feet above sea level, hot spring bath, bracing mountain air. Hotels are good in Kalibo and Roxas City. San Jose, Antique has good inns. Rates are reasonable. 

We Take Care that You eat or Drink

Restaurants serve Filipino, American, Chinese, Japanese, Thai and European dishes; bars dispense Philippine-brewed or imported liquor. 

Try tuba, pure sweet coconut flower nectar, fermented as it collects drop by drop from a fresh every-six-hour gash on the flower cluster, in the same way tuba has been produced centuries before the first pyramid was built.

You stay in a resort, take tuba in place of morning coffee as daytime refreshment and late evening nightcap. Three days of this, as many of swimming and sunning, and the pink glow on you will be conversation piece for weeks in Rome, Copenhagen or Vladivostok. 

Rumors about exotic things to eat are true.

Durian, rambutan, lanzones are plentiful, juice and sweet in AKlan, norther Antique, central Capiz, Iloilo highlands, southern Negros, Mangoes from Guimaras and Iloilo are the sweetest and exported abroad. Atis, sineguelas and kamunsil food markets in the summer.

Seafoods like crab, lobster, prawn, shrimp, eel, snail, clam or shellfish. Don’t miss pancit molo, spiced pork-chicken meat balls, each ball daintily wrapped in thin dough, boiled in chicken-pork broth. Used to be served only to Spanish governors, archbishops and generals.

Museums

Visit these showcases of West Visayas culture and history for panoramic view enough to last until you return for a closer look, two, three, four times or more when you will begin to hear centuries rustle. Museo Iloilo, Negros Museum, Capiz, Aklan and Guimaras Museums are showcases of local culture and heritage worthy of the great histories of the provinces. 

Largest Playground in Asia

Five golf courses open all year round; three in Negros, one each in Iloilo and Boracay. Tennis, badminton, basketball, courts, bowling alleys, football fields, rugged country hiking.

Fish Antique waters for tunas that fight. Boats for rent available.

Swim any hour of a fine day. All days are fine while you’re here. Much more sea than land in the region. 

Blending science, art, superstition, and gambling, cockfighting is gymnastics as much for cocks is as for spectators. Buy razor-sharp fighting-cock spurs for souvenir that should be kept out of children’s reach at home.

Camp in Negros’, Guimaras’ and Capiz’s virgin forests, anywhere . from base to summit of active Kanlaon volcano in Negros.

For scuba divers: 18th century Spanish galleon between northern Iloilo and Negros; 19th century British frigate wreck near Iloilo City; steamship Panay sunk by Japanese bombers at Maricalum Bay, 1942; Japanese transport shelled, sunk by American submarine off Tigbauan in 1943; and Japanese warships at bottom of Sibuyan sea since 1944.

Twenty caves in Capiz, five in Iloilo, five in Guimaras, three in Antique, two in Aklan, and more in Negros await spelunkers.

Those who resent other tourists getting in their way can ask to be marooned away on small vacation islands off northern Iloilo The numerous opposite breed can shriek, shout, squeal, sweat, stomp, prance, dance for a day, two, four or a whole week, day and night at festivities; Antique’s Binirayan; Bacolod’s Masskara and Inasal Festival; Panaad sa Negros; Guimaras’ Manggahan and Capiz’s Sinadya sa Halaran, December 5-8.

These you’ve got to see…

ILOILO

Watchtowers • Old Houses • Sailboats Regatta (2nd Sunday of February) • Old-world Holy Week • Shell Crafts Jusi Weaving • Private Antique Collections

AKLAN

Piña weaving • Mangrove Park • Manduyog Hill in  Banga • Boracay Island (World-famous beach dubbed as paradise and recently rehabilitated)

Antique

Siraan hot spring • Scuba Diving • Old cemeteries • Sea teeming with anchovies at season • Bamboo craft demonstrating Panay art • Mararison, Nogas Island • Madya-as (tallest peak in Panay, glows like solid gold at sunset)

CAPIZ

Birthplace of first Republic President Manuel Roxas • Pan-ay church bell, seven feet across, 10,400 kilograms, cast from 76 sacks of coins • Unspoiled white-sand Basiao, Ivisan beach • Baybay Park • Courtship dance of Mundos, primitive Indonesian tribe in Tapaz • Exotic fish, unique shells at coral reefs of Pilar, caves in Pilar

NEGROS OCCIDENTAL

Mambucal Resort with seven waterfalls and medicinal hot springs • Resorts in Sipalay , San Carlos, Cauayan; waterfalls in Kabankalan, Bago, Salvador Benedicto, La Carlota and Victorias 

BORACAY

Four kilometer of powder-fine sand • Clear and calm waters • Swaying coconut  palms and awe-inspiring sunsets • Stylish bars, exemplary environmental protection, homey  restaurants, international cuisine, golf, top hotels • Melting pot of cultures and the world at the sands of your feet

Buy these, they will look well in your country...

Kapis (pearly claim) shell chandeliers, lampshades, fruit trays, wind chimes, coasters,  hot plates. 

Sinamay fabrics from banana or hemp leaves, piña cloth extracted from pineapple fibers, hablon and patadyong woven from centuries-old looms, hand embroedered for Filipino national costume, table linens, drapes, shawls, bedcoers, tableclothes, placemats, tapestries, ceramics.

Verdict: They're all glad they came

Tourists leaving West Visayas claim they feel healthier, younger. Wherever they end up, all they talk about is West Visayas, some even writing about the region in such  publications as PAL’s Mabuhay Magazine, Pacific Travel News, British  Airways’ High Life and to Ilonggo friends they  leave behind. For they  find, and you  will, too, West Visayas the  heart  of the  Philippines. 

related Work

Negros Occidental

Land of Sweet Surprise

Bacolod City

Things to Do

Local Government Tourism Offices

Department of Tourism Region VI

Capitol Grounds, Bonifacio Drive, Iloilo City
Tel. Nos: (0063) (033) 337-5411 / 509-3550
Telefax: (0063) (033) 335 – 0245
Email: [email protected]
Websites: westernvisayastourism.com.ph
visitmyphilippines.com

Boracay Field Office

Phase 1, Blk 1, Unit #9, D’Mall D Boracay
Boracay Island, Malay, Aklan
Telefax: (0063) (036) 288-3689

Aklan Provincial Government Tourism Office

Ground Floor, Prov’l Capitol Bldg.
Kalibo, Aklan, Philippins
Tel. No. (+63 36) 262 4692
Fax No. (+63 36) 268 8033
Email: [email protected]
Website: aklan.gov.ph

Antique Provincial Government Tourism Office

2nd Fl, Antique Integrated Development Center, San Jose de Buenavista, Antique
Telefax: (+63 36) 540 9765
Email: [email protected]
Website: antique.gov.ph

Capiz Provincial Tourism and Cultural Affairs Office

2nd Flr, Capiz Provincial Capitol, Roxas City, Capiz
Tel. No.: (+63 36) 621 0042 local 133
Telefax No.: (+63 36) 621 2935
Email: [email protected]
Website: capiz.gov.ph

Guimaras Provincial Economic Development Office

Tourism Section, Provincial Capitol
San Miguel, Jordan, Guimaras
Tel. No. (+63 33) 237- 1134
Fax No. (+63 33) 237- 1111
Website: guimaras.gov.ph

Iloilo Provincial Government Tourism Office

2nd Floor, Old Provincial Capitol Building, Bonifacio Drive, Iloilo City
Telefax No.: (+63 33) 338 4910
Email: [email protected]
Website: iloilo.gov.ph

Iloilo City Government Tourism Office

3rd Floor, Iloilo City Hall
Plaza Libertad, Iloilo City, Philippines
Tel. No.: 336 3439
Telefax No.: 336 3439
Website: iloilocity.gov.ph

Negros Provincial Government Tourism Office

Provincial Capitol Building, Bacolod City
Telefax No.: (+63 34) 476 2018
Email: [email protected]
Page: https://www.facebook.com/negrosoccidentaltourismcenter/

Bacolod City Government Office

Ground Floor, New Government Center
Circumferential Road, Bacolod City
Tel. No.: (+63 34) 708 3066
Fax No.: (63 34) 434 6751

Some infos from this blog post were taken from this brochure.

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