10 Best Things To Do In Dumaguete City (Plus Top Tourist Spots)

Fun Things To Do In Dumaguete City

As I stepped out of the small swaying barge that helped me cross the angry sea between Cebu and Dumaguete, I felt the fear of falling off and drowning leave my mind; and immediately got excited to see so many familiar establishments.

Rizal Boulevard in Dumaguete
Rizal Boulevard in Dumaguete

I’m finally back to the City of Gentle People – Dumaguete. Thing is, although Dumaguete City has so much to offer, most of my friends don’t know anything about this little paradise I call home.

Grilled Food in Dumaguete City
Grilled Food in Dumaguete City

To change that, I’ve decided to write this blog. Here are my top ten favorite things to do in this little but beautiful city:

Watch the sunrise/sunset at the Rizal Boulevard.

Upon checking in, I suggest you go to your room, leave your bags, and take your camera out to a stroll at the city’s famous boulevard. No, don’t bother eating some snacks (more on this later).

Sunrise in Dumaguete by Chris Hwang via Flickr
Sunrise in Dumaguete by Chris Hwang via Flickr

When I was in college, this was my favorite place to hang out, simply because the perfect place to de-stress. Around five in the morning, the place boasts of a relaxing aura – one that makes you feel like time is purposely going slow so you can enjoy the beauty of the sun rising.

Eat Balut and other street foods

Don’t hate me for making you skip the ham and egg sandwich at the hotel. I’ve prepared something more exciting for you… that is if you’re up for the challenge.

Street Food in Dumaguete by Marion Paul Baylado via Flickr
Street Food in Dumaguete by Marion Paul Baylado via Flickr

If you come from Asian descent, eating balut (fertilized eggs that contain partially developed duck embryos) may not be new to you. But if you’re not from Asia, this is definitely something out of your food comfort zone. Pick the duck embryo age and start slurping!

Not up for it? That’s fine… There are plenty of other choices – Squid Ball, Tempura, Fish Ball. The plan is to enjoy the cold breeze of the wind while you listen to a live acoustic version of Ed Sheeran’s Thinking Out Loud.

Not your jam? Don’t worry, the guitarist is open for other requests.

Visit Silliman University

If you’d like to see the first and oldest American university operating in the Philippines today, add Silliman University to your itinerary. Established in 1901, the university (that is only 3 minutes away from Rizal Boulevard) has kept some of its original structures intact for tourists to see.

Silliman University
Silliman University

While you’re there, make sure you also visit their Anthropology and Whalebone museum to see old artifacts and whale-bone remains; and take photos under the century-old Acacia trees. I tell you, it’s the perfect place for #OOTD.

Try Bossing’s No. 5 Tempura

Your Dumaguete experience will NOT be complete without trying out the famous tempura challenge – Bossing’s No. 5.

Try Bossing’s No. 5 Tempura
Bossing’s No. 5 Tempura

It all started as a regular street food stand, until the owner who is popularly known as ‘bossing’, introduced a unique set of sauces. The ideas is: the higher the number, the spicier it gets.

I was once challenged by some crazy friends to try it out, and I’m proud to say I accepted the challenge, even if I went home crying because the burning sensation won’t go away. It was worth it though because it made us laugh so hard. Definitely, it was the highlight of our day and it could be yours too.

Attend a mass at the Cathedral

Cathedral of St Catherine of Alexandria in Dumaguete
Dumaguete Cathedral by Mike Gonzalez (TheCoffee) – Work by Mike Gonzalez (TheCoffee). Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

St. Catherine of Alexandria Cathedral is the oldest stone church in Negros. Although constructed around 1754 – 1776, the facade shown today is that of the 1930s. The cathedral holds a mass every Sunday.

Offer a prayer at the Belfry Tower

Dubbed as the most popular tourist attraction in Dumaguete, the Belfry Tower lies beside the Dumaguete Cathedral. A lot of devotees spend their afternoon here, lighting up some candles and praying for their loved ones.

Buy a kuripot pizza at Nevas

Hungry? I’m glad you are! You’ve probably have a favorite pizza house in your town, and now I’d like to introduce you to mine. I’ve never met any Dumagueteño who hasn’t dined at Nevas, Pizza, atbp. yet. The place houses the famous “Kuripot” pizzas – slightly smaller but has the same delicious taste. Kuripot pizzas are all less than P200 pesos and can serve 2-3 people. Not bad, yes? PS. I’d work for a whole sunny-side-up kuripot pizza anytime.

Get your family some pasalubong from Sans Rival

Sans Rival in Dumaguete
Sans Rival in Dumaguete

Dessert time! Let’s visit the most famous restaurant in Dumaguete since 1977, Sans Rival Cakes and Pastries. Don’t be confused though… yes, the name of the restaurant is Sans Rival, and their best delicacy has the same name. Recently, they’ve started offering full meals by opening Sans Rival Bistro and I can’t enough of the place.

Here are some of the must-try’s from their menu:

  • Sans Rival Cake
  • Silvanas
  • Black Sambo
  • Lengua & Rice
  • Pesto Lasagna

Relax and have a good time at Hayahay

In the mood to party, drink, and make more “unforgettable” memories? Let me take you to Hayahay. The place is always full-packed with people who’d like to have a good time. On special occasions, they hold fancy foam parties, so call ahead and check when the next one is.

Bring your friends and grab a bottle or two, and enjoy the night away with good friends. Don’t forget to meet new ones. Dumagueteños aren’t called gentle for nothing! 😉 

Rent a motorcycle

Finally, rent a motorcycle to see the rest of the city and it’s nearby tourist spots. Since Dumaguete is a small-sized city, most of the residents own a motorcycle… which is why it is unofficially called the motorcycle capital of the Philippines.

You can tour the whole city in a few hours, and you’d have enough time to see the even more amazing places in the neighboring towns.

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  1. Furqan Rathore says

    it is good idea to rent a motorbike in Dumaguete city.. if you are looking for rental shop in Dumaguete city visit book2wheel.com you can find all the available motorbike on this website.

  2. […] 10 Fun Activities To Do In Dumaguete […]

  3. John says

    Great post, beautiful place, one of the best in negros oriental, if you want to visit Dumaguete again and other parts of negros oriental, try visiting dumagueteneo.com for the ultimate island guide. You can book tours there and find the best resto in town.

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