As the Philippines are an archipelago, you will never run out of islands to explore there. If you are traveling from Cebu to Bacolod, you can do so by air or by a combination of land and sea transport. The quickest and most comfortable way is to board a plane and get to Bacolod in less than an hour. However, if you're not in a hurry, you can always take a more scenic albeit longer route. The flying distance between Cebu and Bacolod is approximately 110 kilometres and travel time can be as brief as 55 minutes by air. If you travel by bus and ferry, be ready to spend around 8 hours and cover 250 km.
Flights from Cebu to Bacolod
Cebu Pacific and Philippine Airlines both fly multiple times a day from Cebu to Bacolod. Flight time is normally between 45 minutes and 1 hour. You can book a flight with Cebu Pacific for around PHP2200 to PHP6000 one way and they have different fare categories to fit your needs. If you are traveling light, you can purchase their "fly only" option with the standard 7-kilogram hand carry luggage. Meanwhile, tickets for Philippine Airlines’ Cebu–Bacolod flight usually range between PHP1500 and PHP5500. Note that while there may be several flights daily, there are only 1 or 2 direct flights. Most flights have a layover in Manila.
From Cebu to Bacolod by bus and ferry
You can also travel from Cebu to Bacolod by bus. First, make your way to either Cebu South Bus Terminal located just within the city in Bacalso Avenue or Cebu North Bus Terminal in Mandaue. The former managers southbound trips while the latter hosts northbound buses.
One of the most popular bus companies that travels directly from Cebu to Bacolod is Ceres. When we say direct, it doesn't mean you won't have to get off the bus until you reach your destination. The bus will board a barge or ferry so you will have to get off the bus and get on the ferry too.
If you are in the Cebu North Bus Terminal, Ceres buses have scheduled departures at 5 am, 8 am, 9 am, 11.30 am, 5.30 pm, 9 pm, and 12 midnight. There are also other operators with buses departing for Bacolod at 5 am, 8 am, 11.30 am, 5.30 pm, 9 pm, and 10 pm. Note that schedules can change at any time so it's best to contact Ceres or the terminal for a more updated information. The fare should be about PHP750-PHP950 and the trip lasts around 8 hours.
If you are leaving from the Cebu South Bus Terminal, Ceres has scheduled departures bound for Bacolod at 2 am, 3 am, 4.30 am, 7 am, 8.30 am, 9.50 am, 1 pm, 3 pm, and 6 pm. The fare is slightly lower compared to what you will pay leaving from the South Terminal: PHP500-PHP700 and the travel time is between 7 and 8 hours.
If you cannot catch a Ceres bus, you can always board any bus heading to Toledo Port. It's not a direct trip but you will have the freedom to choose the most convenient departure time, the ferry, and probably save some pesos in your pocket, too.
From Toledo, you can board a ferry bound for San Carlos and from San Carlos take another bus all the way to Bacolod. There are several ferries plying the route including fast crafts which can cut your total travel time to about 6 to 7 hours. Although it is a bit inconvenient because of the transfers, it might be cheaper than the direct trip if you choose slower ferries and ordinary buses.
Your transportation choices will depend on your budget or time – it is actually possible to travel between Cebu and Bacolod for just about PHP400 one way. This is already the total costs including bus fares and a ferry ticket so if time is not a problem, you can take this route. You'll be rewarded with a view of the scenic countryside and maybe even have a glimpse of some dolphins from the ferry!