Valencia: A Thriving Expat Haven (Doc’s Passport Score: 83)

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Welcome to Valencia, a picturesque municipality nestled in the verdant province of Negros Oriental, Philippines. From its lofty perch on the slopes of Mount Talinis, this tropical town rewards its inhabitants with panoramic views of Dumaguete and the Bohol Sea. Valencia is not your average vacation spot – it’s a unique blend of natural beauty, warm locals, and a bustling expat community that makes it one of the best cities for expats seeking an affordable, offbeat home.


Affordability (14 out of 15)

Your dollar stretches far in Valencia. From the cost of living to affordable property, the town provides remarkable value. While not as inexpensive as some Southeast Asian cities, you’ll find prices generally lower than in the US, Europe, or Australia. Even with a modest income, you can enjoy a comfortable lifestyle.

Safety & Security (13 out of 15)

The low crime rate in Valencia creates a sense of safety that’s cherished by its residents. The town is peaceful, with a tight-knit community where everyone looks out for each other. Like any other place, petty crimes do occur, but violent incidents are rare.

Natural Beauty & Outdoor Recreation (5 out of 5)

If you’re a lover of the outdoors, you’ll find Valencia to be a paradise. The lush forests of Mount Talinis offer exciting treks, while the Pulangbato Falls and Red River Valley are a short ride away. The nearby sea provides opportunities for snorkeling, diving, and fishing.

Expat Community & Services (5 out of 5)

Valencia’s growing expat community is diverse and welcoming. Many businesses cater to expat needs, and there’s even an active Rotary Club. Social events, language exchanges, and sports activities are common, creating a vibrant social scene.

Availability of Emergency Medical Care (4 out of 5)

Dumaguete, a fifteen-minute ride away, hosts Silliman Medical Center, a reputable institution with a 24-hour emergency room. However, for specialized treatments, one might need to travel to Cebu City.

English Language Accessibility (10 out of 10)

English is widely spoken in the Philippines, making communication a breeze for most Western expats. From business transactions to daily conversation, language is rarely a barrier in Valencia.

Climate (4 out of 5)

Valencia’s climate is tropical – warm throughout the year, with a rainy season from June to October. The town’s higher altitude brings cooler temperatures than the coastal cities, making it a pleasant place to live.

Proximity to a Good Airport (7 out of 10)

Dumaguete Airport, a 20-minute drive from Valencia, offers flights to Manila and Cebu. However, for international travel, one would need to take a ferry to Cebu and fly from Mactan-Cebu International Airport.

Food, Dining & Social Scene (4 out of 5)

Valencia’s dining scene is humble but satisfying. The town’s weekly farmers market offers a bounty of local produce. A handful of restaurants, including some owned by expats, serve a variety of cuisines. Nightlife is limited, but Dumaguete is a short ride away for those seeking more excitement.

Public Transportation and Infrastructure (6 out of 10)

Jeepneys and tricycles serve as the town’s primary public transportation. Infrastructure is improving, but expect occasional power outages and road work. Internet services are decent but can be inconsistent.

Availability of Internet (6 out of 10)

Internet access is available but inconsistent. The town has several service providers, but speed and reliability can vary. Internet cafes can be found in the town center, and most restaurants offer WiFi.

Cultural, Recreational Activities & Entertainment (4 out of 5)

Valencia offers cultural events like the local Fiesta and Sinulog. For recreational activities, there’s the nearby Forest Camp and Tejero Adventure Park. But for a more varied arts scene or entertainment, you’d need to head to Dumaguete.

Final Results

While Valencia may not score perfect tens across all categories, it has a sold Doc’s Passport Score of 83.   its strengths in affordability, safety, natural beauty, and a strong expat community make it a worthwhile consideration for expats on a budget. However, the town’s somewhat remote location and limitations in medical facilities and infrastructure might not suit everyone. As always, it’s best to visit and see if Valencia’s charm and tranquility resonate with you.

It’s worthy of note that Gio of Gio in the Philippines ranks this city as #4 on his list of 5 Best Retirement Cities in The Philippines video.

This evaluation is geared towards expats seeking affordable living arrangements and not those looking for vacation spots or other purposes.

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