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Dumaguete is a city of charming contradictions. As the capital of Negros Oriental and a university town, it is a centre of urban activity. At the same time, it is known for the chill atmosphere promoted by its breathtaking coastline, historical sites, and friendly locals. Whether you’re planning to stay inside the city or use it as a base for exploring the rest of Negros, the small city of Dumaguete has something up its sleeve just for you.
Rizal Boulevard is a good starting point, especially if you’re in for a dose of nostalgia and nationalism. Breathe in the sea breeze and watch the waves while walking along this seaside avenue that stretches for 700 meters and is said to have been a favorite promenade of national hero Jose Rizal. At the end of the road, turn onto Silliman Avenue and get ready to roam around Silliman University Campus. Known as the first American university in not just the Philippines but the whole of Asia, Silliman is home to many renowned writers like the late National Artist Edith Tiempo. Step right into the Silliman University Anthropology Museum which is housed in Silliman Hall, the iconic edifice built in 1903 in the style of American Eastern Stick. Expect to see artifacts of Philippine ethnic tribes and centuries-old archaeological findings from all over Negros Island. Although they are located in the neighboring town of Valencia, a trip to Dumaguete would be incomplete without a visit to the exquisite Casaroro Falls and Pulangbato Falls. While the trek to Casaroro Falls is famous for being quite a challenge, Pulangbato Falls Valencia is easily accessible even for those who are not big fans of the great outdoors.
Back in the city, two famous historical landmarks await your attention: the Dumaguete Bell Tower and the Dumaguete Cathedral Church. Both of these structures are a stone-throw away from Quezon Park, a green haven at the centre of the city perfect for relaxing while munching on budbud and painitan delicacies from the nearby public market. If all these mushy trips down memory lane are somehow making you miss chaotic city life, head to Calindagan. Unlike residential areas like Rovinil Village, Calindagan is a commercial hub through and through. Here you’ll find the Dumaguete Business Park, a selection of affordable Dumaguete hotels, and Robinsons Place which is the one and only mall in the whole city. If you have a sweet tooth, don’t forget to drop by Sans Rival Bakery for their signature silvanas.