Dumaguete is known for being a city with incredible natural attractions right on its doorstep, and one of the most popular spots is Red Rock Hot Spring in Valencia. Funnily enough, after living in Dumaguete for 10 months, we didn’t get around to visiting Red Rock Hot Spring until our last week.
We made the drive up the mountain only to be told the hot spring was closed due to a rise in local COVID cases. Carson managed to sweet talk his way in just to take a few photos of the place and dip his toe in to test the water temp. We never even got to swim! In saying that, we still managed to find out everything you need to know before visiting Red Rock Hot Spring.
WHERE IS RED ROCK HOT SPRING
Red Rock Hot Spring is in the mountain town of Valencia, about 25 minutes drive from Dumaguete City. The best way to get around in Dumaguete is rent your own scooter for about ₱500 ($10 USD) a day , instead of relying on pretty unreliable public transport. It’s a beautiful drive up the mountain and paved for the most part. It’s a good idea to combine your trip to Red Rock Hot Spring with Pulangbato Falls, since they’re only 2 minutes apart.
RED ROCK HOT SPRING ENTRANCE FEE & OPENING HOURS
The entrance fee for Red Rock Hot Spring is ₱100 ($2) with an option to rent a cottage starting at ₱400 ($8.25). The price is the same, regardless of if you swim or just decide to take photos, so make the most of your money and take a dip!
Ordinarily, Red Rock Hot Spring is open every day from 7am – 7pm, unless of course they close during the pandemic! It’s worth checking on their Facebook page for any updates before you make the drive up.
WHAT TO EXPECT AT RED ROCK HOT SPRING
Our experience was a little different from the usual, given that we weren’t allowed to swim. The main reason we’d taken so long to actually visit was because we’d always heard from friends how crowded it can get at Red Rock Hot Spring, and that’s never enticed us. Obviously, our photos don’t reflect that, but just keep it in mind if you decide to visit.
The temperature of the water is a comfortable 37 C / 98 F which might sound scalding, but is not too bad for a hot spring. Hot springs in the tropics are best enjoyed on overcast or even rainy days, and luckily the temperature in Valencia generally dips a little lower than the temp in Dumaguete.
As you can tell in the photos, Red Rock Hot Spring has been developed into somewhat of a resort with a large stone pool surrounded by cottages. It’s particularly popular amongst local families, especially on weekends. Whilst resort style attractions aren’t our usual cup of tea, we can still imagine it being a nice place to relax on a rainy day.
CONTINUE TO PULANGBATO FALLS
Just two minutes up the road is the incredibly popular Pulangbato Falls, perhaps the most well-known waterfall in Dumaguete (technically Valencia). It makes sense to pair your visit to Red Rock Hot Spring with Pulangbato Falls and kill two birds with one stone. Pulangbato Falls is also very developed, but it’s worth the visit if you’re already in the area!
If you’re craving a little more adventure, one of our favourites is actually Upper Pulangbato Falls, a somewhat hidden waterfall above the resort. Away from the crowds, only the most dedicated make it to this upper level, which is just how we like our waterfalls!
MORE HOT SPRINGS IN DUMAGUETE
Red Rock Hot Spring isn’t the only hot spring in or around Dumaguete! In the nearby town of Dauin there are two more, Baslay Hot Spring which was once a major attraction, and our personal favourite, the nameless Secret Hot Spring and Waterfall.
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WHERE TO STAY NEAR DUMAGUETE
Most people who visit Negros Oriental are told to stay in Dumaguete, but what they really mean by that is stay around Dumaguete. True, Dumaguete City has plenty of tourist inns and budget hotels, but it’s the surrounding towns of Dauin and Zamboanguita that offer the best spots to stay. There’s not a whole lot to do in the city itself, so when you stay in the nearby municipalities there’s plenty of nature to explore whilst still being nice and close to Dumaguete City. Check out our top picks for accommodation near Dumaguete City.
LUXURY: Atmosphere Resorts & Spa, Dauin
Atmosphere Resorts & Spa in Dauin is the resort to stay at if you’ve got a big budget and fancy the finer things in life. Atmosphere has hosted its fair share of local celebrities and deep pocketed divers looking for the best beachfront luxury in Dauin. Read our full review of Atmosphere Resorts & Spa here.
MIDSCALE: Mike’s Dauin Dive Resort, Dauin
If you want to stay by the ocean without breaking the bank, Mike’s Dauin Dive Resort in Dauin is a comfortable midscale accommodation option perfect for diving enthusiasts. If you’ve never dived before, you can get your certification at Mike’s, and divers of all skill sets can enjoy the abundance of macro diving opportunities in and around Dauin.
BUDGET: Bongo Bongo Divers, Dauin
Bongo Bongo Divers is one of the most popular hostels in Dauin for backpackers looking for cheap accommodation in a convenient location. The rooms are simple, without any glitz and glam, but the vibe is fun and welcoming. They have a variety of room styles to choose from, ranging from couples rooms to AC or fan only dorms.
AIRBNB: Villa Amani, Zamboanguita
Villa Amani in Zamboanguita is the perfect holiday home for small families or groups of friends looking for privacy that a traditional resort or hotel can’t offer. The main house sleeps 4 with additional space for 2 in the guest house, or you can book the guest house separately if it’s just the 2 of you and you’re on a budget. The property has a swimming pool, an unbeatable view of Apo Island and kayaks to use whenever you want. Read our full review of Villa Amani here.
MORE NEGROS ORIENTAL GUIDES:
Pulangbato Falls, Valencia
Upper Pulangbato Falls, Valencia
Secret Hot Spring & Waterfall, Dauin
Baslay Hot Spring, Dauin
Lake Balinsasayao & Danao Twin Lakes, Sibulan
Casaroro Falls, Valencia
Swimming with Apo Island Turtles, Dauin
Original Casaroro Falls, Valencia
Tottyn Falls, Valencia
Dumaguete Belfry Tower