Aerial shot of  a beach in Iloilo

7D6N Iloilo, Guimaras, Bacolod Itinerary: Tourist Spots & Island Hopping Tours

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Islas de Gigantes and The RuinsDotting the Visayas region are some of the best islands in the Philippines like Boracay, Cebu and Bohol. Aside from these top tourist spots in the Philippines, the islands of Visayas are also home to must-visit destinations including the three provinces of Iloilo, Guimaras, and Bacolod that you can explore in just one trip. The central island group is home to Visayas tourist spots such as old mansions, historical churches, and secluded beaches. 

Some of the must-see tourist destinations in the Philippines in these Visayas provinces are Iloilo’s Gigantes Islands or Islas de Gigantes, Guimaras Windmills, and The Ruins near Bacolod City. Aside from sightseeing, there’s also a long list of Visayan local cuisines that you shouldn’t miss here including Iloilo’s La Paz Batchoy, Guimaras’ sweetest mangoes, and Bacolod’s Chicken Inasal.

While you can plan a trip to each province separately if you have little time, it’s best to explore Iloilo, Guimaras, and Bacolod in one trip since they’re accessible from each other via ferry transport. 

Iloilo City and Bacolod both have airports, making them accessible from Manila and other domestic destinations in the Philippines. Among the two, only Iloilo International Airport, one of the largest airports in the Philippines, caters to international flights to/from Hongkong and Singapore.

Plan your 7D6N Bacolod, Iloilo, and Guimaras itinerary with this travel guide. Find out the best places to go, things to do, and what to eat during your Visayas trip:

When is the best time to go to Iloilo, Guimaras, and Bacolod?  

Beach in GuimarasSince you’re exploring three destinations and traveling by sea ferry, you should take note of the best months to plan your trip. Find out as well when the colorful and fun festivals are held in the provinces every year to make the most of your vacation.

Climate and Weather 

The provinces of Iloilo, Guimaras, and Bacolod are geographically near each other so they share the same season. The dry season is from December to May, which is also the best time to visit the Philippines. Check the weather updates frequently for thunderstorms or typhoons to avoid trip cancellations.

Festivals

All three provinces celebrate notable Philippine festivals and cultural activities in the Philippines that are highly recommended for tourists to join so they can experience the remarkable cultural tourism in the Philippines. The Philippines’ diverse customs and traditions are among the reasons why you should visit the Philippines

Dinagyang Festival in Iloilo 

One of the most spectacular religious festivals in Iloilo is the Dinagyang Festival, which celebrates the feast day of Santo Niño, or the child Jesus on the 4th Sunday of January.

Manggahan Festival in Guimaras

Manggahan FestivalPhoto by Guimaras Manggahan Festival

Being home to the sweetest mangoes in the Philippines, Guimaras holds an eat-all-you-can feast called the Manggahan Festival every month of May.

MassKara Festival in Bacolod

MassKara FestivalFirst celebrated in the 1980s, the MassKara Festival in Bacolod is the city’s most colorful celebration with vibrant masks and lively street dances annually held every 4th Sunday of October.

Day 1: Flight to Iloilo City & Sightseeing Tour

Philippine Airlines aircraftPhoto by Philippine Airlines

From Manila, board a plane to Iloilo International Airport. Upon arrival, you’ll transfer to your hotel in Iloilo City. 

On Day 1 of your Iloilo itinerary, you will explore the top Iloilo tourist spots and feast on local dishes at restaurants like Tatoy’s Manukan or talabahan (oyster) joints. 

Below are some of the iconic Iloilo landmarks that you can visit today for your Iloilo tours

Jaro Cathedral

Jaro CathedralOne of the architectural landmarks in the Philippines is Jaro Cathedral, proclaimed as a national shrine and historical landmark in 1976.

Casa Mariquit

During the Spanish colonial era, Casa Mariquit served as the former residence of Fernando Lopez, Sr., the late Vice President of the Philippines in 1949.

Molo Mansion

Established in the 1920s, Molo Mansion is now a heritage museum with a cultural retail shop featuring Ilonggo specialties such as Pancit Molo and Cafe Panay’s famous hot chocolate.

Molo Church

Molo ChurchThe only Gothic-Renaissance Church in the Philippines is Molo Church, which showcases 16 statues of female saints.

Calle Real

The most iconic heritage street in Iloilo is Calle Real, where you can find Iloilo’s best-tasting Roberto’s Siopao.

Esplanade 

Iloilo River EsplanadeOverlooking the Iloilo River, Esplanade is a public park and a recreational area that features the I Am Iloilo Signage.

Miagao Church

Miagao ChurchEstablished in 1786, Miagao Church became a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its Baroque and Romanesque architecture.

Garin Farm

Garin FarmPhoto by Garin Farm

Famous for being a leisure farm, Garin Farm best represents the agritourism in the Philippines and farm tourism in the Philippines. It is also a pilgrimage site known for the Heaven on Earth, an all-white religious site featuring a big cross. You need to climb a hundred steps to reach this famous Iloilo tourist spot.   

Similarly, Ephrathah Farm Iloilo is an adventure park and one of the best farm resorts in the Philippines. Browse Ephrathah Farm rates to learn more.

La Paz Market food trip

La Paz BatchoyDiscover the Philippines food culture at La Paz Market. Don’t miss Netong’s La Paz Batchoy noodle soup and the famous brewed coffee at Madge Cafe.

Biscocho Haus

A trip to Iloilo isn’t complete without going to Biscocho Haus, popular for souvenirs and Iloilo pasalubong such as their original toasted biscocoho bread crackers and butterscotch.

After your Iloilo tour, you will head back to spend your first night at one of the best Iloilo City hotels with modern and cozy amenities.

Day 2: Iloilo Islas de Gigantes Island Hopping Tour 

Cabugao Gamay on Islas de GigantesMake the most of your trip and experience island-hopping in the Philippines. On Day 2, you will head to Gigantes Islands or Islas de Gigantes, which is 109KM from Iloilo via bus (3 to 4 hours) or van (2.5 hours) to Carles town. Then, you will spend 1.5 hours riding an outrigger boat from the Bancal Port.

Your Iloilo, Guimaras, Gigantes, and Bacolod itinerary will be more fun if you include Islas de Gigantes island hopping. It comes with a sumptuous lunch buffet menu that includes cheaply priced scallops (P1 each) and other fresh seafood like crabs and shrimps. 

Refer to our Islas de Gigantes guide to learn more about the attractions that you can visit during your Iloilo, Guimaras, Gigantes, and Bacolod itinerary. You can also pre-book an Iloilo and Guimaras itinerary 3D2N package for a guided tour if you want a shorter vacation.

Here are some of the top attractions included in an Islas de Gigantes island hopping tour: 

Cabugao Gamay Island

A white sandbar lies in the middle of Cabugao Gamay Island, a small island with stunning rock formations and a viewpoint overlooking the entire island where tourists can take photos.

Tangke Saltwater Lagoon

Hidden behind tall rock formations is a natural turquoise-colored pool similar to the breathtaking waters of El Nido and Coron, Palawan.

Bantigue Island

Waves lapping Bantigue Island's beachAnother stunning powdery long sandbar is laid out on Bantigue Island, a good swimming and sunbathing spot.

Tinagong Dagat

Comparable to the world-famous Boracay Island, Tinagong Dagat translates to ‘hidden beach” in English, which features small cliffs beside crystal blue waters.

Antonia Beach

Antonia Beach on Isla de GigantesThis stunning beach has a delicate white sandbar that forms like a small cape. A large boulder nestles at the tip of its shoreline.

Pulupandan Islet

Unlike other beaches on Islas de Gigantes, Pulupandan Islet has a rocky shore that is not ideal for swimming but still features picturesque scenery.

Cap off your Iloilo island-hopping escapade and travel back to your Iloilo City hotel. Rest up to prepare for your Guimaras City tour and island tour the next day. 

Day 3: Guimaras Island Tour

Ferry rideYou will check out early from your Iloilo City hotel on Day 3. To get from Iloilo to Guimaras, you will travel by ferry for your Guimaras Island tour to land attractions, windmills, and some of the underrated best beaches in the Philippines

Iloilo Guimaras Itinerary FAQs

  • How to get to Guimaras from Iloilo City?

Guimaras Island is accessible by land and sea ferry from Iloilo City. The travel time from Iloilo City to Guimaras is approximately 1 hour, which includes the land travel (around 30 minutes) and ferry ride from Iloilo wharf to Guimaras (around 15 to 30 mins). 

  • How to go to Guimaras from Iloilo Airport?

To get to Guimaras from, Iloilo Airport, take a cab or jeepney to Ortiz or Parola Wharf and ride a ferry boat to Jordan Wharf on Guimaras Island.

  • How far is Iloilo to Guimaras?

The distance from Iloilo City to Guimaras is 16.1KM.

  • How long is the travel time to Guimaras Island from Iloilo City?

The estimated Guimaras to Iloilo travel time by ferry is approximately 15 to 30 minutes.      

  • What is the ferry schedule to Guimaras Island from Iloilo?

The first ferry trip from Iloilo to Guimaras leaves at 3:30 AM, while the last trip departs at 7:30 PM.

Here are some of the attractions you can visit on your land tour in Guimaras:

Mango Icon at Jordan Wharf

Guimaras Mango SignThis is the most photographed spot in Guimaras, featuring a large mango icon.

Smallest Plaza

The Rizal monument in Guimaras Smallest PlazaPhoto by @immeeho on Instagram

True to its name, the smallest plaza in the Philippines features the statue of the Philippine National Hero, Jose Rizal.

Guimaras Windfarm Windmills

Guimaras WindfarmGuimaras Windmills is home to 27 wind turbines with a view deck overlooking the sunset.

The Pitstop

The Pitstop Restaurant's mango pizzaGuimaras’ famous mango pizza is available at The Pitstop, a local restaurant also known for serving well-known Filipino dishes like Beef Bulalo and Pork Adobo with sliced mangoes.

Trappist Monastery

This secluded enclave is run by monks who sell souvenir items and sweet delicacies like jellies and jams made from the sweet mangoes of Guimaras.

Guimaras Sign at the Guimaras Provincial Capitol Grounds

Guimaras SignThe island boasts a gigantic Guimaras sign at the Guimaras provincial capitol grounds that is also a famous tourist photo-op spot. 

National Mango Research and Development Center

As the Philippines’ mango capital, Guimaras takes pride in its research center that cultivates and harvests the sweetest mangoes, which tourists can buy and take home.

Guisi Lighthouse

Guisi LighthouseThis 18th-century colonial lighthouse stands on top of a hill along the beach in the municipality of Nueva Valencia.

Alubihod Beach

Tucked in Nueva Valencia, the Alubihod Beach features cream-colored sand, spectacular rock formations, and clear blue waters.

By the end of your Guimaras island tour, you can stay overnight in one of the beach resorts in the Philippines and the best resorts in Guimaras. 

Day 4: Guimaras Island Hopping Tour 

Guimaras Island hoppingFrom your Guimaras hotel or resort, have your breakfast early to prepare for your Guimaras island-hopping tour. Don’t forget to pre-book your Guimaras tours for a hassle-free travel.

Tatlong Pulo

From the name itself, Tatlong Pulo is a stunning three-islet formation that features tranquil white-sand beaches in the municipality of Jordan.

Natago Beach

Another secret hideaway in Guimaras is Natago Beach, a privately-owned beach that shelters a bamboo house on top of huge limestone rocks.

Naburot Island

One of the off-the-beaten-path beaches in Guimaras is Naburot Island, an islet with rustic and laidback beachfront accommodation.

Ave Maria Islet

This small yet charming islet has a grotto-like formation where it got its name, Ave Maria. Its unspoiled white-sand beach has clear blue waters ideal for swimming and snorkeling.

Lamurawan Beach

This secluded beach features a grotto of the Virgin Mary overlooking the neighboring islets.

Baras Cave

Tucked on a small island, the Baras Cave features a refreshing natural pool beneath a limestone rock formation.

Turtle Island

The most abundant marine sanctuary in Guimaras is Turtle Island, which serves as the nesting ground for sea turtles.

Crocodile Island

This unspoiled island lies in the municipality of Nueva Valencia and was named such because it resembles the shape of a crocodile. 

Taklong Island National Marine Reserve

Taklong Island National Marine ReservePhoto by Taklong Island National Marine Reserve

This marine protected site covers two main islands alongside 37 islets called the South Point Islands. Each has numerous coves with white-sand beaches and limestone formations.

Charles Floating Cottage 

Charles Floating Cottage Photo by Charles Floating Cottage

Tucked in the middle of the sea, Charles Floating Cottage is a small bungalow built with bamboos and perched on top of the clear waters surrounded by a thick mangrove forest. Here you can swing on ropes, enjoy the slide, and dive into the water.

After your Guimaras island hopping tour, you will head back to Iloilo City and stay there for the night. 

Day 5: Bacolod Lakawon Island & Resorts Tour

A swing on Lakawon IslandAfter taking a hearty breakfast meal in Iloilo, you will head to Bacolod in the morning. Prepare for a fun-filled tour to visit Bacolod tourist spots

Bacolod and Iloilo Itinerary | FAQs

  • How to get to Bacolod from Iloilo? 

The fastest way to get to Bacolod from Iloilo is via a fast craft ferry.

  • How long is the travel time from Iloilo to Bacolod? 

The estimated Iloilo to Bacolod travel time is 1 hour and 40 minutes.

  • What is the fast craft schedule from Bacolod to Iloilo and vice versa?

From Iloilo, the first trip leaves at 7:20 AM, and the last trip departs at 5:30 PM. Meanwhile, the earliest trip from Bacolod to Iloilo leaves at 5:45 AM, and the last trip departs at 4:00 PM.

Here are some of the Bacolod island and resort attractions that you can visit today:

Lakawon Island

Lakawon Island ResortThis 16-hectare island boasts cream-colored sand and crystal clear waters. It is home to one of the most famous floating bars in Asia, Tawhai Floating Bar. 

Mambukal Resort

Mambukal ResortSet at the foot of Mount Kanlaon, Mambukal Resort is a charming mountain resort that lets you take a dip in its hot and cold sulfur spring pools.

Campuestohan Highland Resort

Teepee huts at Campuestohan Highland ResortPhoto by Campuestohan Highland Resort

This 5-hectare highland resort features modern amenities and leisure activities for kids and adults young at heart. 

After your fun-filled Bacolod tours, you will travel back to Bacolod City to rest and recharge at one of the best Bacolod hotels.

Day 6: Bacolod City Tour with The Ruins & Silay Mansions 

Exterior of The Ruins in Negros OccidentalAfter your breakfast, prepare to start your Bacolod City tour. Here are some of the top attractions in Bacolod City, Silay, and Talisay that you can visit today:

The Ruins

A fountain in The RuinsConstructed in the 1920s, The Ruins in Talisay was built by a wealthy sugar baron named Don Mariano Ledesma Lacson in memory of his Portuguese wife, Maria Braga. It also used to be the biggest residential structure at the time. 

San Sebastian Cathedral

San Sebastian CathedralSituated across the Bacolod City plaza, the San Sebastian Cathedral features an 18th-century Gothic-inspired facade built of coral stones.

Provincial Capitol and Lagoon

Bacolod Provincial Capitol and LagoonThe Bacolod provincial park showcases Eduardo Castrillo’s Paghimud-os Monument and Riccardo Monti’s water buffalo sculpture.

Pope John Paul II Tower 

Pope John Paul II TowerPhoto by Bacolod City Tourism Office

Set amid the city skyline, this seven-storey building was built as a commemoration of Pope John Paul II’s papal visit to Bacolod in 1981.

Manokan Country

Chicken InasalBacolod City takes pride in their Chicken Inasal recipe, a roasted barbeque specialty passed on to generations and sold in the Manokan Country grounds as early as the 1980s. This is a must-visit for lunch during your Bacolod tour.

Negros Museum

The Negros MuseumPhoto by The Negros Museum

This historical landmark depicts Bacolod’s vibrant culture and history through paintings and antique collections. 

Balay Negrense

Negrense Museum or Balay Negrense is the first museum established in Negros Occidental during the late 1890s, which features the 19th-century lifestyle of a sugar baron Victor Gaston.

Bernardino Jalandoni Museum

Another ancestral home in the collection of Silay Mansions, the Bernardino Jalandoni Museum showcases the well-preserved possessions of elite Negrense families in the 1900s.

Daku Balay

Dubbed as the largest residential Art Deco building in the Philippines, Daku Balay is a three-storey mansion of the Negrense sugar baron Don Generoso Villanueva.

El Ideal Bakery

El Ideal Bakery's senorita pastriesPhoto by El Ideal Bakery

Established in 1920, El Ideal Bakery serves homemade bread and cookies such as Biscocho, Piaya, Tart, and Barquillos. It also features the old architectural style of houses in Silay mansions. 

Day 7: Departure

Philippine islands from an airplaneAfter having breakfast at your hotel in Bacolod, drop by Bongbong’s or Merzci to purchase some souvenirs or Bacolod pasalubong snacks like piaya and napoleones to cap off your Iloilo, Bacolod, and Guimaras itinerary. Then, head to Bacolod domestic airport to board a direct flight back to Manila.

Explore the Best Places in Iloilo, Guimaras, and Bacolod

Aerial shot of  a beach in IloiloStart planning your Iloilo, Guimaras, and Bacolod vacation in the Philippines and book family tour packages or vacation packages for couples at Guide to the Philippines travel booking website. Don’t forget to check out our travel packages to the Philippines which includes a stay at 5-star hotels in the Philippines. For a seamless trip, refer to our website for the latest Philippine travel requirements.