SIGHTS OF NEGROS - PHOTO OF THE DAY - Exploring the Giant Staghorn Fern in Bacong, Negros Orienta

Photo of the Day for April 16, 2024 – Exploring the Giant Staghorn Fern in Bacong, Negros Oriental

Discover the enchanting Giant Staghorn Fern (Platycerium grande) thriving in its natural habitat in the Philippines. Join us on an exploration of this unique epiphyte as it gracefully adorns tree branches, fallen logs, and stones in the tranquil woodlands of Bacong, Negros Oriental. To witness this captivating fern in its element, venture to ‘Tatay Eti’ at Liptong Woodland, easily accessible from Dumaguete City. Navigate through Valencia, passing the plaza, and follow Rizal Street to the barangay halls of Liptong Valencia and Liptong Bacong. Seek guidance from local residents to make the final journey to Liptong Woodland, where Tatay Eti Rene Vendiola warmly welcomes enthusiasts of endemic trees and plants.     In its natural habitat, the Giant Staghorn Fern thrives as an epiphyte, utilizing tree branches and similar structures for support without extracting water or nutrients from the host tree. Its verdant fronds perform photosynthesis, while brown fronds near the base capture falling debris, serving as a nutrient source derived from trapped organic matter. This majestic fern boasts impressive dimensions, with sterile fronds resembling shields and hanging “fingers,” reaching up to two meters in length. Embraced by the lush forests of Mindanao, Platycerium grande shares its habitat with a diverse array of native flora, including orchids like Phalaenopsis Mindanao and vibrant Renanthera and Vandas. Delve into the care of this remarkable fern, recognizing its epiphytic nature and the importance of providing suitable growing conditions, such as ample light and high humidity. Explore innovative methods for nurturing and transplanting the Giant Staghorn Fern, ensuring its thriving presence in home gardens and botanical collections. Embark on a journey to uncover the beauty and resilience of the Giant Staghorn Fern, an emblem of authentic Philippine life, flourishing amidst the verdant woodlands of Siaton, Negros Oriental.  

SIGHTS OF NEGROS - PHOTO OF THE DAY - At the farmers' market in Valencia

Photo of the Day for March 31, 2024 – At the farmers’ market in Valencia

The farmers’ market in Valencia, Negros Oriental, is a vibrant hub of local commerce and community interaction, embodying the essence of agrarian life in the region. Nestled amidst the verdant landscapes and rolling hills of Negros Oriental, this market serves as a vital link between the hardworking farmers of the area and the residents eager to procure fresh, locally sourced produce.     Every market day, which typically occurs on Sundays from early morning to noon, the plaza and some side streets come alive with a kaleidoscope of colors and aromas. Stalls brim with an abundance of fruits, vegetables, herbs, and other agricultural delights, all meticulously cultivated by the skilled hands of local farmers. From the sweet succulence of ripe mangoes to the earthy aroma of freshly picked herbs, each item tells a story of dedication and passion for the land. What sets the farmers’ market in Valencia apart is not just the quality of its produce but also the sense of community it fosters. Here, vendors and customers alike engage in warm exchanges, sharing stories and forging connections that transcend mere transactions. It’s a place where farmers proudly showcase the fruits of their labor, and patrons express gratitude for the sustenance provided by the land. Beyond the bounty of fresh produce, the market also offers a diverse array of artisanal goods and homemade delicacies. Handcrafted pottery, woven baskets, and intricately embroidered textiles showcase the rich cultural heritage of the region, while stalls selling homemade jams, preserves, and baked goods tempt visitors with their tantalizing aromas. For tourists and locals alike, a visit to the farmers’ market in Valencia is not just a shopping excursion but a sensory journey through the heart and soul of Negros Oriental. It’s a chance to savor the flavors of the land, support local farmers and artisans, and immerse oneself in the vibrant tapestry of community life. As the sun sets over the horizon, casting a golden glow over the market stalls, one can’t help but feel grateful for the simple pleasures found in the bounty of the earth.   See also the video VALENCIA – SUNDAY MARKET & FAIR | Negros Oriental 

SIGHTS OF NEGROS - PHOTO OF THE DAY - Sweet strawberries from Valencia, Negros Oriental

Photo of the Day for March 06. 2024 – Sweet strawberries from Valencia, Negros Oriental

4Valencia in Negros Oriental, Philippines, is renowned for its strawberry farms and production. While strawberries are not native to the Philippines due to its tropical climate, Valencia’s unique microclimate and elevation provide favorable conditions for growing this delicate fruit. The cool temperatures and fertile soil of Valencia make it an ideal location for cultivating strawberries, despite the country’s predominantly warm weather. Farmers in Valencia have adopted innovative techniques to mimic the cooler climate required for strawberry cultivation, such as planting them in elevated areas or using protective coverings to shield the plants from excessive heat. The strawberries produced in Valencia are prized for their sweetness, vibrant color, and juicy texture. Many local farmers sell their strawberries directly to visitors at roadside stalls or through local markets like the Sunday Farmer’s Market, allowing visitors to experience the freshness and flavor of Valencia’s strawberries firsthand.     Moreover, the popularity of Valencia’s strawberries has led to the establishment of agritourism activities in the area, where visitors can engage in strawberry picking tours or learn about the cultivation process from local farmers. These initiatives not only promote agricultural sustainability but also contribute to the local economy and tourism industry of Valencia. In essence, Valencia’s strawberry industry serves as a testament to the ingenuity and resilience of Filipino farmers, showcasing their ability to adapt and thrive in diverse agricultural landscapes.

SIGHTS OF NEGROS - PHOTO OF THE DAY - At the sulfur vents in Valencia, Negros Oriental

Photo of the Day for February 08, 2024 – At the sulfur vents in Valencia, Negros Oriental

The sulfur vents in Valencia, Negros Oriental, emanate an otherworldly spectacle against the backdrop of lush tropical foliage. Wisps of steam rise from the earth, carrying with them the distinctive scent of sulfur. The landscape is marked by fissures and vents, where molten sulfur emerges from the depths below. The vibrant hues of yellow and orange paint the surrounding rocks, evidence of the elemental forces at play. The air is thick with an eerie ambiance, intensified by the sound of bubbling and hissing from the vents. Despite the harsh conditions, resilient vegetation clings to life nearby, showcasing nature’s ability to adapt to even the most extreme environments. The sulfur vents stand as a testament to the geological wonders of the region, drawing visitors to witness this captivating display of natural phenomena.  

SIGHTS OF NEGROS - PHOTO OF THE DAY - Planning a visit to Dumaguete City? Explore the nearby attractions, including Forest Camp Nature Resort in Valencia, just a short distance away. Known for its scenic beauty and Instagram-worthy settings, this tropical resort is easily accessible, approximately a 20-minute journey from the city. Experience the charm of Forest Camp, set in an elevated area, especially appealing during the summer season. Enjoy activities such as wall-climbing and zip-lining, with nearby attractions like Casaroro Falls adding to the allure of the area. Consider spending the night amidst the beautiful forest with accommodation options ranging from camping tents to private rooms. Forest Camp Nature Resort offers a delightful and budget-friendly way to enjoy your vacation. To reach the resort from Dumaguete City, various transportation options are available, making your journey hassle-free. Plan your next travel adventure to this tropical haven and immerse yourself in the natural beauty of Forest Camp Nature Resort.

Photo of the Day for February 05, 2024 – A visit to the Forest Camp in Valencia

Planning a visit to Dumaguete City? Explore the nearby attractions, including Forest Camp Nature Resort in Valencia, just a short distance away. Known for its scenic beauty and Instagram-worthy settings, this tropical resort is easily accessible, approximately a 20-minute journey from the city. Experience the charm of Forest Camp, set in an elevated area, especially appealing during the summer season. Enjoy activities such as wall-climbing and zip-lining, with nearby attractions like Casaroro Falls adding to the allure of the area.     Consider spending the night amidst the beautiful forest with accommodation options ranging from camping tents to private rooms. Forest Camp Nature Resort offers a delightful and budget-friendly way to enjoy your vacation. To reach the resort from Dumaguete City, various transportation options are available, making your journey hassle-free. Plan your next travel adventure to this tropical haven and immerse yourself in the natural beauty of Forest Camp Nature Resort.

Valencia – Negros Oriental

“Valencia’s Tranquil Charm: Nature Retreats, Heritage Trails, and Artistic Flourishes” Nature Retreats in Valencia: Discover the serene and natural landscapes that define Valencia, from lush mountain retreats to cascading waterfalls. Explore destinations like Pulangbato Falls and Casaroro Falls, highlighting Valencia’s appeal as a nature lover’s haven. Heritage Trails and Historical Landmarks: Embark on a journey through Valencia’s rich history by exploring heritage sites such as the St. Augustine Church and the Old Valencia Watchtower. Learn about the town’s cultural heritage and the preservation efforts that contribute to its timeless charm. Artistic Flourishes in Valencia: Uncover Valencia’s artistic side by exploring local art galleries, murals, and cultural events. Learn about the town’s support for the arts, featuring local talents and creative initiatives that add a vibrant touch to Valencia’s cultural scene.      

SIGHTS OF NEGROS ORIENTAL - PHOTO OF THE DAY - Girls at the wishing well in Valencia

Photo of the Day for January 04, 2024 – Girls at the wishing well in Valencia

The small town boasts a delightful public plaza, a true gem often overlooked by its residents. Despite its modest size, the plaza strikes a perfect balance between open space and developed areas. The landscaping is tastefully simple, avoiding extravagance, while maintaining cleanliness, order, and a lush green ambiance.     Dominating the scene is a statue of Jose Rizal atop a tall pedestal, surrounded by well-manicured walkways connecting the playground to the expansive open field. In the backdrop, tennis courts add a recreational touch. An ancient fountain, a relic from Spanish times, graces the plaza. Once a vital water source from mountain springs, it now stands as a decorative element. Taking advantage of the town’s sloped terrain, an amphitheater enhances the plaza’s charm. This space transforms into a stage for concerts or political rallies, set against the natural incline. The southern expanse of the plaza is dedicated to an open grassy area, framed by majestic giant acacia trees. While the town church, constructed in 1961, may not be an architectural marvel, its presence atop a grand wide staircase imparts a majestic aura to the surroundings.

SIGHTS OF NEGROS ORIENTAL - BLOG - Vegetables from the Farmer's Market in Valencia

Vegetables from the Farmer’s Market in Valencia

Every Sunday in the mountain village of Valencia, very close to the town of Dumaguete, there is the now iconic ‘Sunday Market’, which has evolved from a simple farmers’ market. We are there this Sunday at around 9 a.m. and actually just want to buy some vegetables. It’s difficult to find a parking space at this time of day. We find what we are looking for in a second side street. A house owner points out that we are parking under a coconut tree with nuts. Good advice and we move the car a few meters further forward, where a falling nut cannot cause any damage. Next, we set off in search of one of the local carinderias where we can sit down for breakfast. We quickly find one there too. Only a few people are there. We order. As there are only native dishes with rice, I make do with a coffee and the ladies get native chicken soup. It’s worth noting that they cook on open fires with wood in the kitchen.   [siteorigin_widget class=”WP_Widget_Media_Gallery”][/siteorigin_widget] After we have eaten and are now full, we walk two streets over to the Sunday market in Valencia. The girls look at their shopping list and quickly find one of the vegetable stalls, which already has a lot of the things they want to buy. It’s worth noting that they cook on open fires with wood in the kitchen.       Here are some impressions of the fruit and vegetables on offer at the various market stalls: [siteorigin_widget class=”WP_Widget_Media_Gallery”][/siteorigin_widget] [siteorigin_widget class=”WP_Widget_Media_Gallery”][/siteorigin_widget] In addition to fruit and vegetables, there are of course other things to buy. For example, homemade specialties such as the cassava chips pictured here. The seller of brooms and dirt shovels is certainly happy when he comes home with some money in his pocket.       These things are made by many farming families at home in their free time when they are not working in the fields, where the material, such as for the grass brooms, grows.   Finally, I would like to show you my video about the Sunday market in Valencia: VALENCIA – SUNDAY MARKET & FAIR | Negros Oriental

SIGHTS OF NEGROS ORIENTAL - NEWS - Buy Mt. Talinis Dark Chocolate NOW and save a Mountain

Buy Mt. Talinis Dark Chocolate NOW and save a Mountain

Mt. Talinis Dark Chocolate was conceptualized in 2018 by the multi-awarded Negros Oriental Chamber of Commerce & Industry (NOCCI) as a community-based inclusive social enterprise comosed of marginal cacao farmer in the remote mountain barangays of the Municipality of Valencia, Province of Negros Oriental, promoted through the One-Town-One-Product (OTOP) program of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) in partnership with the Local Government Unit (LGU) of Valencia, Energy Development Corporation (EDC), various national government agencies, and Philippine Cacao Development Board, Inc. (PCDBI) President and the King of Philippine Dark Chocolate, Mr. Valente Turtur of Ayungon, Negros Oriental. The said initiative was prompted by the existence of more than 22,515 cacao trees grown at the foot of Mount Talinis RainForest, considered by DENR as the “last frontier” of Negros Island. To protect the rainforest from destructive “slash-and-burn” (Kaingin) farming practices, EDC launched its BINHI Greening progamm; accordingly, the propagation of Mount Talinis cacao seedlings and drying of cocoa beans are subjected to EDC’s pioneering Vegetative Material Recovery (VMR) technology and innovative geothermic drying facility to speed up the research and development of export quality singl-origin cacao beans and sustain the preservation and progation of the most premium threatended Philippine tree species and the very rare CRIOLLO cacao trees found in Mount Talinis RainForest. By choosing Mt. Talinis Dark Chocolate, 5 % of our annual net profits will be donated to cacao farmers who support our mission to Save Mount Tailinis RainForest. BUY MT. TALINIS DARK CHOCOLATE NOW AND SAVE A MOUNTAIN! Support local products – available in Pasalubong stores and selected super markets