Calbayog, officially the City of Calbayog, (Waray: Syudad san Calbayog; Cebuano: Dakbayan sa Calbayog; Filipino: Lungsod ng Calbayog) and often referred to as Calbayog City, is a 1st class city in the province of Samar, Philippines. According to the 2015 census, it has a population of 183,851 people.
Things to do in Calbayog City
3.5 based on 15 reviews
My Filippina fiancé and I recently visited this place as it was recommended by a local only to find a dark and dingy looking place where I felt uncomfortable the whole time I was there because there were 4 or 5 young people just hanging out there and not having coffee or anything else and people, workers included just kept on staring at me like they never saw a white person before.
I ordered the blue marlin fish, it was over cooked and dry. It was so tough that I had to use pressure to cut it with my fork. (Properly cooked fish should be tender and flaky).
I won't go back.
4 based on 6 reviews
This small bar/restaurant is situated in the middle of Calbayog city along one of the main roads, and thus relatively easy to find. In addition to the tables inside there are a couple of tables available outside (provided you arrive early enough). Inside is non-smoking, airconned environment. In terms of overall ambiance, its best described as 'intimate'.
The food is well-priced and tasty. This is a place primarily targeted towards locals rather than visiting tourists hence Filipino dishes rather than Western. Reasonable range of drinks available, including cocktails. I particularly enjoyed their generously sized rum and cokes.
Without question this is one of the better places to eat/drink in Calbayog city and the service was reasonably fast and efficient. Toilets not so impressive though - these were very much in line with local hygiene standards (i.e. a bit basic and smelly).
On certain nights live music is on offer from around 9pm onwards. We were fortunate enough to hear a local Pinoy dude with acoustic guitar and backing singer; they were extremely impressive and belted out a range of local and Western songs all night. They even managed to make an Adele song sound good and I'm no fan of this overexposed, waistline-challenged, English 'songbird' (I'm English too BTW). Sound quality and volume level were perfect - I'm particularly fussy about both - and I would recommend this place on the strength of the live music alone.
Generally speaking, Calbayog only has a limited number of places with 'tourist-appeal' but I discovered that this relatively small place provided a great all-round friendly and local experience at affordable prices. Strongly recommended.
4 based on 20 reviews
A sign that this country is taking on the trappings of the West. Just like all the Western coffee shops in Thailand, the Bo's Coffee chain is popping up all over the Philippines,
This is a great thing if, like me, you like to have good coffee even when you travel in Asia. But it is not good if you shudder at the fast food and retail chains of the West diluting the traditional culture.
Philosophies aside, it is lovely coffee.
3.5 based on 17 reviews
There's one thing about my Filipino family I'll never understand: Their craving for Jollibee. Just imagine, there's so much delicious local food all around, at home and in restaurants, and still they go for this overpriced copy of the infamous Colonel Sanders' KFC. And even KFC's greasily battered chicken lumps are better than the tasteless content of the bee's buckets. Not crispy, not juicy, and not at all delicious.
Yesterday, as our house was suddenly full of visitors and with no time left to cook, they opted once again for a take-out from this unwholesome chain. We had fried chicken with comes with a slimy, indefinable brown sauce, and spaghetti (which remind me of the equally disgusting German Mirácoli - the more unfortunate among my countrymen actually take those for pasta).
A lunch, unforgettable only in the sense that the food sat very heavily in my stomach for the rest of the day.
3.5 based on 7 reviews
As merienda (afternoon tea) I enjoyed a great mango shake while my colleague had brewed coffee that he pronounced excellent.
These took a while to arrive but were worth the wait. The waiter and waitress were both pleasant. We sat outdoors but the majority of Seating is in the thankfully non smoking indoor area.
3.5 based on 6 reviews
The 1st time I went to this place I was so pleased with the fast, friendly service and the hot drinks my fiancé and I ordered along with the trendy decor and it's bright, inviting atmosphere, that we went back the 2nd time for food. I had a burger and it was not good at all. The meat was not what westerners would refer to as being pure, triple A beef, it was a mushy patty that was warmed up. I'm not even sure is was made from ground beef. I ate some of it but could not finish it because it was gross. My fiancé had seafood marinara pasta. I came with 3 small shrimp. it tasted ok but it was made up of mostly pasta.
Ok, fine, we discovered this place is good for coffee and maybe desert only, as far as I was concerned, so we went back the 3rd time a day or two later. I had a cafe latte which was very good along with a slice of mango cream pie that was nice and fresh. My fiancé had a cold drink, a smoothy which was very good.
But, that was the last time I will go there because while we were enjoying our drinks and sweet treat, one of the workers there stood beside the desert display case and cut all of his finger nails and just let the clippings drop to the floor while his 2 co-workers said nothing to him about it. I just figured if they do this sort of personal grooming out in the open where customers can see them, then god only knows what's going on in the kitchen.
I will not go back.
The reason for rating this place "poor" and not "terrible" is because they at least had good drinks and the young lady that served us was nice.
3.5 based on 15 reviews
The place with its pun name is cool and clean and very red, due to red columns, red chairs, red table cloths, red waiters' jackets, and red lanterns, a clear indication that you have just entered a Chinese restaurant outside China.
Our lunch started out with a disappointment, as a lot of the dishes we'd have liked to order were not available. No beef, as beef is only supplied on Sundays, and it was already Wednesday. And no shrimps, as today there had been no fresh shrimps available, which stroke us as a bit odd because Calbayog is never short of fresh seafood. I think they might have to invest in a freezer. And they should really consider having standard items like kalamansi juice made fresh and not from cans (by the way, fruit shakes were also out).
On the other hand, what we finally had was quite good. The portions were big; each dish were actually good for two. Everything was tasty, the pork items maybe a bit too fatty (the crispy pata hardly had any muscle meat), but to get lean, meaty pork in Calbayog is not easy, as we know very well. We also appreciated that the proprietor was really interested in what we thought about the whole experience.
If this had been in Manila I would have given a 3, but considering the difficulties to run a restaurant in the province, 4 bubbles seem appropriate.
4 based on 7 reviews
I've eaten at several different places here in this city for the past 10 days or so and I've gone back to this place a few times with my wife who is from here. The door is always opened for you upon arrival by one of the friendly staff members, the place is clean ample, comfortable Seating and the menu has more to offer then most places here. The food, such as the tossed salad is always fresh,(salads are hard to find around here), tasty and nicely prepared. Nothing gross going on here from what I saw, which is a big bonus.
The beer and iced tea were nice and cold.
Try this place out, it's really one of the best here as far as i am concerned. Just don't order the cheeseburger. Of all the different meals we've had here, that is the only one I would not recommend as the patty is not made with 100% pure ground beef (not sure what it was, tasted like chicken).
I do recommend the lasagna and ribs though and my wife liked the fresh lumpia, a Filipino favourite.
4.5 based on 10 reviews
Kamayan is our favorite restaurant in Calbayog. By far. Unpretentious but beautiful, a courtyard sheltered by orchids, interesting birds watching you while you eat (I didn't mind though that the nasty tukan was not around this time), a cool, open pavilion which accommodates also larger groups (we had a birthday to celebrate), and the best food in Greater Calbayog. Again by far.
Giving notice is not a must but helpful, especially if you turn up in bigger numbers (thanks to yours truly, their phone no. is now available on Tripadvisor). Our favorite dish, grilled hito, was not in season, but all our other favorites were: the crispy but still tender pata (complete with toenails), the chili crab (so spiky that I pierced my cheek from inside), sizzling, crunchy sisig (quite a pig-earful), the magnificent butter chicken (Jollibee, watch and learn!), some other fish in tausi sauce (the hito I remember tasted tausier), sinigang na hipon with giant hipons, and chop suey, since vegetables should be healthy even if prepared with plenty of pork belly. A small downside, I can't help mentioning this again, is the fact that all their drinks are canned, bottled, or tetrapacked, a fact which jeopardizes the authenticity rating - at least they should offer my wife's beloved green mango shake and my beloved kalamansi juice (sugar on the side)...
Service is fast and prices are very reasonable. We'll be back, if not on this holiday, then on the next for sure.
4 based on 8 reviews
Whilst staying at S R Bed & Breakfast in Calbayog, we ordered from Marcial's grill.
The ordered meals were sizzling pork chop, sizzling squid, baby back ribs and cucumber salad.
The sizzling pork chop was extra dry and covered in garlic, the baby back ribs was good and meaty but again sauce was full of garlic, cucumber salad was a few slices of cucumber and a few slices of tomato, the sizzling squid was more like a chop suey style squid.
Overall the portions were good size and mostly tasty if an excessive use of garlic.
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