A Long Time Ago, Iron Dinosaurs Roamed the Island of Negros

The Central Azucarera de La Carlota in Negros Occidental was once considered as one of the biggest sugar mills in Asia and is still regarded as the oldest sugar central in the Philippines.

Central Aucarera de La Carlota via Hbalairos under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license

Constructed in 1916, the sugar central is located about 45 minutes south of Bacolod City at Barangay RSB of La Carlota City, Negros Occidental. It was first built inside Hacienda Esperanza.

Harvested sugarcane for processing photo under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic license

During the glory years of the sugar industry in the island of Negros, you’ll find black vintage steam engines or trains that deliver sugarcanes to the central. It was a common view to the people of La Carlota.

Nowadays, the sugar central is still operational but the big steam engines were already replaced by big trucks since most of the railways in the island were already closed.

But these steam engines, popularly called “the iron dinosaurs of La Carlota” by the locals, can still be found in the vicinity of the sugar central upon entering the western portion of the city.

The iron dinosaur is a must-visit tourist destination if you want to know more of the sugar industry of the Philippines. Tourists are oriented how sugar is processed while enjoying the view of the sugarcane field.

For more information or reservations, please call the La Carlota City Tourism Office at (034) 460-0286.

(Iron dinosaur photos from La Carlota City Tourism site unless otherwise stated)

How to Get There

From Manila, you can fly to Bacolod (Php2500++, round trip, 45 minutes). From Bacolod-Silay Airport, you can take a shuttle (Php75-100 per head), or a cab (minimum of Php400) and ask to be dropped off at your destination.

La Carlota is approximately 1-hour drive by private car from Bacolod. From Bacolod, you can ride a bus plying to La Carlota at the South Terminal.