7 reasons why you should visit Dumaguete

Nannah Tobias
Nannah Tobias | Jan 30, 2014
Number 1: People are way too nice and chill

It's really true what they says about Dumaguete being the City of Gentle People. I don't think i saw any stoplights, because they didn't need any.

Dumaguete A friendly artist at Terracotta Haus and Souvenir Shop we met while walking around

Every motorist was gracious and giving, and all the pedestrians followed the rules! It's just one more amazing thing that'll make me keep coming back (and actually even think of retiring!) to this wonderful city. I miss it already!

Dumaguete The Streets of Dumaguete: Did you know that a tricycle ride around Dumaguete (except to and from the Airport) per head will cost you P10 only?

I also got a chance to be toured by Woodrow "RR" Maquiling Jr. from Dumaguete's Department of Tourism (DOT), and he is a perfect example of how gracious, kind and welcoming they are.

Dumaguete Meet RR of the Dumaguete Tourism Office

Number 2: Cheap, Quality Food!

There were 4 of us that booked promo flights last year (around 1300 pesos per person) and we really did not have anything in mind except to eat, chill and see the whale sharks in Oslob. However, the weather did not cooperate during the days of January 20-23, 2014, so we just ended up EATING!

Dumaguete A very cold day in Dumaguete

At super splurge-mode, we're talking 700 Pesos per person on meals for the WHOLE DAY of eating and that's a typical Makati dinner right there!

Breakfast at Chiccos with a huge cup of a smiling latte would be at 200.

Dumaguete Chiccos Tapa Breakfast

Dumaguete Chiccos Coffee Art

Sans Rival offers all kinds of breakfast meals with unlimited coffee for 175! More Sans Rival...

Dumaguete I can chill for hours over unlimited coffee at the Sans Rival Restaurant overlooking Rizal Blvd.

A full lunch at Neva's Pizza and Pasta for only 100 each.

Dumaguete Order oven brick pizzas at very reasonable prices!

Dinner at the famous Moon Cafe for a huge slab of ribs, taco salad and some liempo for 250 pesos only (that's with a can of Coke too). Unlimited rice.

Dumaguete That big slab order of ribs good for more than 4 people is only 550 Pesos!

Gabby's Bistro for the cheesy fries, ribs, fish and the yummiest Yema Turron a-la-mode! I won't ever have to step into a Chili's Restaurant again!

Dumaguete Cannot resist: Onion Rings, Ribs, Cheesy Fries, Fish and Chips and more!

Dumaguete Props to Gabby's Bistro's interiors for overall creativity

Dumaguete How about the exterior of Gabby's Bistro?

You cannot miss Jo's Chicken Inato for some good ol' lechon manok goodness for a stick of barbecue, chicken paa and rice (don't forget the Coke!) for only 120 Pesos! Unlimited rice is a common thing in Dumaguete!

Dumaguete One Spicy Chicken Inato please!

Dumaguete Posing with the famous chicken!

Snack at the famous Painitan at the Dumaguete Market for some bodbod and tsokolate. Only 12 Pesos for a pair! Brought home some for pasalubong as they open at 6am daily.

Dumaguete Bodbod for sale!

Dumaguete Chocolate goodness!

Number 3: Walking along Rizal Boulevard

Dumaguete Take a walk down Rizal Blvd.

You have to experience walking along the boulevard from sun up, down to 6pm where there are stalls of ihaw-ihaw (barbecue).

Dumaguete My new favorite place in the country

The cool breeze and the sound of the waves crashing against the rocks just grow on you. You get a sense of the peaceful and gentle Dumaguete from this chill area. I miss this the most.

Dumaguete The fantastic view from our first day at Bethel Guesthouse

Dumaguete Obligatory Pose for all tourists

Dumaguete Crash into me

Dumaguete The only thing really creepy about the walk were the nuns

Number 4: The Silvanas

Dumaguete A box of Silvanas all to myself

Need I say more? I think most people (if not all) make a trip to Sans Rival (Stores at Rizal Blvd and Robinson's Place Dumaguete) to taste and take home boxes and boxes of these frozen buttery treats.

Dumaguete Best deal at Sans Rival Restaurant is their 600 Peso-bottle of wine that goes hand in hand with every bite of Silvanas

To be honest, I prefer their sans rival more! Try them both, as they really won't make a dent on your wallet. Best with unlimited coffee (at 125 per dozen Silvanas, how can you not eat more than 3?)

Dumaguete A slice of heavenly sans rival for only 30 Pesos

Number 5: Quaint Cafes and Artsy Restaurants all over town

2-Storey House

A Korean-concept cafe with very cool walls fit for the backpacker's lifestyle. As the name suggests, it is a two- storey shop that serves Korean food, cakes, coffee and even beer!

Dumaguete Play with the walls

Dumaguete Don't we all agree?

Dumaguete Now I definitely agree

Gabby's Bistro

Dumaguete A very cool place for a coffee or a beer

You can basically order everything at this restaurant/cafe/bar. The walls are too cool, with a massive collection of vintage items. It helps that the restaurant is also under Florentina Homes a Boutique Hotel right beside the restaurant. The apartment-hotel complex in Dumaguete is composed of 3 European-themed stand-alone buildings (Swiss, Spanish-Mediterranean, English Tudo) so you can just imagine the look and feel is rather tasteful.

Dumaguete Cool place for a coffee or a beer, yes?

Dumaguete Bonus: Swimming pool and a very charming Chef Gabby Del Prado!

Dumaguete At the risk of sounding redundant, the Yema Turron-a-la-Mode of Gabby's Bistro must be my TOP 5 out of all the desserts I have eaten in my lifetime

TRIVIA: Actor Daniel Padilla stayed here at The Tower in 2013 to hide from a massive flock of screaming fans at the Blvd!


Craving for some coffee, wine, tapas, cheese and anything western? Head over to Chiccos, which is almost always packed with western senior folks who can show you a great time!

Dumaguete A good selection of wine and booze

Dumaguete Chiccos bakes their own bread, sells a wide range of sausages and tapas and cuts the most flavorful cheese for you

Dumaguete These cups make my day: Spiderman and Barney

Number 6: Super Cheap Accommodation

An overnight's stay at Bethel Guesthouse will only cost 1300 Pesos, good for 2 people. Very hospital vibe, nice beds, cool AC, great showers and very clean! Best of all, it's right at the heart of the Rizal Blvd! Added point: Free pick-up from the airport. I just don't understand why I get the shivers when I walk around the hallways.


You get what you pay for right smack at Rizal Blvd!

We moved to Go Hotels for another night at 1000 Pesos for 2 people. I would definitely book here again as the beds are amazing (best slept on after a mountain trek and we came from a boat ride at the Twin Lakes at this time)! Even better showers; the hotel is fairly new and as I've experienced their Mandaluyong branch, I would say that the service is consistent.

Dumaguete It had me at super comfy bed and cozy room!

Right next door is Robinson's Place Mall, and the good thing about it is the Sans Rival Shop! We were able to buy our Silvana boxes for pasalubong as Go Hotels had a ready-freezer for us to chill them (as we had an 8:55am flight back to Manila the next day)

Dumaguete Go Hotels Dumaguete is my hotel of choice from now on

See more pictures of Go Hotel Dumaguete here:

Number 7: So much green everywhere and I highlight the Silliman University Campus

Dumaguete Silliman University

Home of the best writers and aspiring writers-- I can now understand why. The atmosphere simply allows you to break into prose and metaphor. My visit may be brief, but I really made sure to tour the campus twice. I say this is the best location for a university as it is along Rizal Blvd. only and if I can turn back time, I would have sent an application here.

Dumaguete Very well preserved

Dumaguete Long stretch of green

Dumaguete Fantastic campus overlooking Rizal Blvd

I was also very lucky to be toured by DOT to the Balinsasayao Twin Lakes. Mr. Sun was rather shy that day, but it was still a breathtaking experience to see so much of God's beauty in just a few hours.

Dumaguete Balinsasayao trek and boat ride

I have a hundred reasons to return to this town as I would love to visit Apo Island for the colorful fishes, nearby Oslob (30 minutes away) for the whale sharks and the many waterfalls (Travelers recommend: Mt. Palinpinon) surrounding the small city. But as I look back, I actually wouldn't mind repeating everything I did in those 2 days.

More to see in Dumaguete:

COMING SOON: Map of Dumaguete by PAL

Many Thanks to Choose Philippines Dumaguete Insiders: Woodrow Maquiling Jr. JP Tecson Rachel Ti Caz Marino

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