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The City tour of Bacolod - part 1 (central area)

Bacolod City, the capital of Negros Occidental, and the biggest city in the Western Visayas region, is the gateway to the Philippines' sugar lands. Also known as the City of Smiles, it is a city that offers a rich and exotic blend of tastes, culture and tradition. It is especially known for its great local cuisine. This sprawling city, with its numerous estate mansions and monuments (which were once built from sugar wealth) has a relaxed suburban charm about it.

Bacolod's biggest annual event, the Maskara Festival, is a Mardi Gras-like celebration that features masked and costumed street dancers, with fairs and carnivals. This is held on the third week of October, and coincides with the city's Charter Day celebration. The festival was started in 1980 during one of Negros' worst economic slumps.

Bacolodís most popular fiesta, is celebrated on the third weekend of October closest to October 19, the cityís charter day anniversary. Festivities kick off with food fairs, mask-making contests, brass band competitions, beauty and talent pageants, a windsurfing regatta, drinking and eating contests, trade fairs and exhibits. The climax is a mardi-gras parade where revellers don elaborate mask and costumes and dance to Latin rhythms Rio de Janiero style.

Some say that Masskara symbolizes the actual state of many of the people here - putting on a happy face over the reality of poverty, of being lost and needing a real relationship with God.

Bacolod City Hall

Fish sellers near the indoor market

The finest of American cultural cuisine is available in downtown Bacolod.

The indoor market in the center of town is a good place to shop for baskets, basic foods, souvenirs, etc.

City Tour part 2 - The Plaza
Back to Main YWAM Bacolod Page

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