Sipalay is a jewel beach city to be explored in the southern part of Negros Occidental. It’s the 2nd-to-the-last town of the province. Here are things to do and treasure in Sipalay.
- Distance from Bacolod City: P175 kilometers
- Classification: 4th Class Component City
- Land Area: 44, 270 hectares
- Number of Barangays: 17
- Population as of 2015: 70,070
- Language: Hiligaynon and Cebuano
- Filipino and English are also used in business transactions
How to Go to Sipalay
By Land Commute
- From any point in Bacolod City, head to Ceres South Terminal at Lopez-Jaena Street Bacolod City.
- You can take the Ceres Bus bound to Sipalay or Hinoba-an or take the white Commuter Vans across Ceres Terminal.
- Travel time takes around 4 to 5 hours depending on speed of bus.
DRIVE From Iloilo or CEBU
- From ILOILO: Take fastcraft to Bacolod or onboard your car on a roro to Bacolod, or commute 2 pumpboats through Guimaras Island.
- From CEBU: Take bus at Cebu North Terminal and the bus will pass through Tañon Strait or you can onboard your car on RoRo, and either through San Carlos, Don Salvador or Mabinay Negros.
- Upon arriving at Bacolod, head south via Araneta Street and drive for around 3 hours south of Negros.
- Places you will get past by:
- Crossing Pulupandan
- San Enrique
- crossing Ilog
Cebu to Sipalay
Wednesday & Sunday
ETD 02:30 PM
ETA 03:20 PM
Sipalay to Cebu
Wednesday to Sunday
ETD 03:40 PM
ETA 04:30 PM
Iloilo to Sipalay
Monday & Thursday
Sipalay to Iloilo
Monday & Thursday
#1 Poblacion Beach
The city’s main public beach which is found right at the heart of the city center. This 1.5 km shoreline of light-brown sand boasts one of the most magnificent sunset views in the city. Near in this area, you can find here the Sipalay food park, Jamont Hotel, tourism information center, and the market.
#2 Sugar Beach
A 1.1 km strip of sugary light brown sand, this secluded place is in the north part of the city and going here requires you to take a boat ride from the Poblacion beach or cross the Sipalay River. It also hosts some budget-friendly resorts and accommodation establishments and diving and snorkeling sites. More info here
#3 Punta Ballo Beach
A major beach area of the city, Punta Ballo is a long stretch of white sand beach and home of some of Class A resorts in the city. This is in the south part of the city proper and accessible by car. Diving, island hopping, snorkeling, and kayaking are some of the activities in this beach.
#4 Campomanes Bay
The largest enclosed body of water in the city, Campomanes bay located in the southern part of the city hosts an eco-port that caters to medium-sized seacrafts. The bay is surrounded by limestone cliffs, private and public beaches, and islets and it is famous for its diving sites especially the shipwrecks.
#5 Tinagong Dagat Islets
Composed of 22 hilly-islets, this cove is one of the most picturesque places in Sipalay. This is located south of the city proper between Poblacion and Punta Ballo beaches and home to some high-end and budget-friendly resorts. Activities in this area include kayaking, snorkeling, island hopping, and sunset viewing.
#6 Anjauan Island
The largest island in Sipalay, Anjauan is located in the northern tip of the city near the Sipalay-Cauayan border. This is accessible from Poblacion and Sugar beach and home of a white-sand stretch of sandbar. It has two small adjacent islets and hosts a marine-protected area which is also a favorite diving sites.
#7 Sipalay City Marine Protected Areas
Sipalay’s wonders lie beneath its pristine shores having eight marine protected areas covering 476 hectares in 5 barangays. These MPAs contain reserves and sanctuaries with strict regulation that allow uninterrupted breeding of marine animals in areas such as coral reefs, mangrove forests, and seagrass ecosystems.
#8 Sipalay City Tropical Forest Protection Areas and Wildlife Sanctuary
To holistically protect Sipalay’s natural resources, City Ordinance 2006-08 or the Sipalay City Tropical Forest Protection Areas and Wildlife Sanctuary declared pockets of forests which estimated at about 2,000 hectares in Barangays Camindangan, Manlucahok, and Cabadiangan were declared as protected areas. Threatened species of birds like the tarictic hornbills, Negros spotted deers and large bats are found in this area.
#9 Burangoy KitE Festival
A grand winner as the Philippine’s best sports festival, the Burangoy Tourism Kite Festival every March was started 2012. The term Burangoy is from Burador or “Kite” and Barongoy or ‘flying fish’ which are the festival’s icons. It comes with a kite flying competition in different marine and animal designs, kite workshops, paramotor exhibition and wind garden.
#10 Barongoy Fish Fishtival - Food Festival
The landmark festival of Sipalay City that showcases the main product of the city, ‘Barongoy’ or ‘flying fish’ this celebration is characterized by a community grilling activity where guests and locals share a hand to charcoal grill and enjoy a fresh catch of barongoy. Other activities of the festival are fluvial parade and dance competitions.
#11 Pasaway Festival
Celebrated every December to commemorate the establishment of Sipalay as a town, the festival tells the story of the city as a former mining town and how it was transformed into a sustainable tourism destination. Pasaway comes from the local term ‘saway’ or copper which were also mined and used by early ancestors.
#12 ScubA Diving
One of the most enjoyed activities in Sipalay, scuba diving showcases the underwater treasures and marine wonders of the city. There are five PADI accredited dive schools that can help you explore more than 42 sites from shipwrecks, car wreck, coral walls, reef gardens, coral towers, drops, underwater caves, and ridges.
Another well-loved activity in Sipalay, snorkeling invites guests and tourists to take a peek in the various marine treasures of the city. Almost all of the boat-hopping vessels and resorts along the coastline offer snorkeling activities and favorite snorkeling sites include Julien’s wreck in the Sugar Beach area and Habok-habok marine protected area in Campomanes Bay.
A perfect activity for adventure-seekers especially when . you are in the TinagongDagat (means “hidden sea”) and Campomanes Bay areas, kayaking gives you the chance to discover more of Sipalay’s islets, rock formations, limestone walls, and cliffs. Most of the resorts in these areas offer kayaking activities.
#15 Sipalay New Government Center
Built in 2012, this city landmark with a neo-classical design is the seat of the government of Sipalay City. This three story building painted in white, houses most of the city government offices and is also a venue to some formal occasions and gatherings. It is located in Barangay Gil Montilla which is 10 minutes from the city proper.
#16 Eco Center
Being one of the only three LGUs in Negros Island who have a fully-functional waste treatment facility, this eco center is at the same time a park, an outdoor classroom, research site, and a recreational area. It is situated in 5.2-hectare property of the city government 15 minutes from the city proper in Barangay Mambaroto.
#17 Sipalay Airport
The only functional airport in the southern part of Negros Occidental, this former mining airport serves private airplanes and now locals and mostly tourists to and from Cebu and Iloilo via AirJuan. It is 30 minutes from the city proper and has a 60-meter long strip and 30-meter width runway. It started its commercial operations last August 2017.
#18 Sports Tourism
Sipalay’s beach areas especially the Poblacion Beach are the best venues for various sports tourism activities. Beach volleyball for instance is held every charter anniversary celebration and summer iniviting local and national level teams. Also, paramotor sports was started for the first time in 2018, the first in the city and the province. Other sports include surfing, Frisbee, triathlon, mountain biking and motocross.
Beside from the water-based activities in the city, Sipalay also has numerous caves where guests can enjoy spelunking activities. There are three major caves in the city, one is Maasin Cave located in Maasin Island off Campomanes Bay, Matlag Cave in Barangay Four, and Mamara Cave in Barangay Mambaroto. These caves boast unique stalagmite and stalactite formations and underground river systems.
#20 Huyop-Huyop Falls
Located in Sitio Omas, Barangay Camindangan in the eastern mountains of Sipalay, Huyop-Huyop Falls is the crowning glory of all waterfalls in the city. It is a 15 to 20-meter high body of water characterized by a step of waterfalls in two levels. It has blue-green waters flowing from the main waterfalls down to the streams and lined with limestone cliffs.
#21 Canturay Mangroves
This is a 20-hectare mangrove covered area located in Northern Coastline of Sipalay City in Barangay Canturay. The forest area has . been continuously undergoing conservation development which was started by a mangrove reforestation project of the Energy Development Corporation, Negros Forest Ecological Foundation, Inc., Sipalay City Environment and Natural Resources Office, and the local government unit of Sipalay.
#22 Nauhang Mangroves
Located in the northern coastline of the . city and . along a river system in Barangay Nauhang, this is another mangrove forest area that boasts in abundance of marine and . mangrove ecosystem resources. This si accessible by tricycle and boat and you c an see this resource-rich area when your destination is Sugar Beach.
#23 Philex Lake Reservoir
In 2002, the Bulawan Mine Project of Philex Gold Philippines Inc., in Barangay Nabulao was decommissioned because of low metal prices prevailing at that time. Decades after the closure, nature slowly restored biodiversity in the area and the tailings pond became a sanctuary for animals like the Philippine Wild Ducks.
#24 Grilled Barongoy
As the flagship product of the city, the abundance of ‘barongoy’ or ‘flying fish’ has given great help to the people of Sipalay as a source of livelihood and food. It is the most favorite delicacy of the people of Sipalay especially when it is grilled fresh and best enjoyed with friends. The warm and classic fish meat with local sauces is the perfect way to eat it.
#25 GINATAANG USON
‘USON’ or scorpion-like mud crabs are a delicacy of the Sipalay especially in the mangrove area of the city. These crustaceans live in the muddy places and during rainy season, they go out of their breeding places because of the high water levels. Its preparation takes a thorough cleaning process and its sweet taste is complemented with coconut milk and spices.