Things To Do In Cebu City and Cebu Province
The number of things to do in Cebu City are limitless. There are some key points of interest though and I’ll cover some of them in this article.
When talking about Cebu, many people are referring to Cebu City. When I say Cebu, I mean Cebu province but sometime I too forget to differentiate between Cebu Province and Cebu City. Cebu City is loaded with attractions. Cebu City is a modern city with lots of older influences of the Philippines to experience.
Cebu province is considered by most as one of the safest areas in the Philippines and quite possibly the safest. Jessie, my girlfriend suggested we live in Cebu before I arrived. I think she wanted to see more of the Philippines but she was also quite timid and a bit afraid. She also believed that I would be more at home here. I do now consider it my home.
In Cebu City there are pockets of life similar to the USA. In most ways though it is not any thing like the USA. Filipino culture is the main reason for these differences. I still have much to understand about Filipino culture. I know enough now to know the way of thinking is completely different. It is different in ways I’m sure that I have to learn. More important though is that my way of thinking is inherently Western. Filipino people are very friendly but business is less friendly in my mind. By that I mean, businesses are more rigid in their policies. It is almost as if the seller is always right and not the customer.
Getting back to things to do in Cebu. Cebu is famous for its beaches. There are many nice resorts. They range from budget priced with minimal accommodations to luxurious complete with helicopter transpiration from the Cebu International Airport to the Badian Island Resort in southern Cebu. Bantayan Island is my favorite place in Cebu and in the the world. Another places of interest within Cebu Province is Moalboal which is located in southern Cebu. Camotes Island in Cebu also attracts many tourist and would be worth a trip. Malpascua Island near my home in Bogo, is a world famous dive spot where you just might be able to have a close and friendly encounter with the Thresher Shark or Manta Rays. You will probably need a very good guide to see the Thresher Shark though. In this article, I will concentrate on Cebu City itself.
Metro Cebu includes Cebu City as well as the cities of Talisay, Mandaue, Lapu Lapu, Carcar City, and Danao City. There are also several municipalities that have mayors but are not recognized as cities. The distinction is only important as far a funding received.
Things to See In Cebu City
- Basilica Minore del Sto Nino
- Magellan’s Cross
- Fort San Pedro
- Casa Gorordo Museum
- Taoist Temple
- Lapu Lapu Shrine
- Malacañang sa Sugbo
- Plaza Independencia
- Rajah Humabon Park
- Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral
- Colon Street: Oldest Street in the Philippines
- Heritage of Cebu Monument
- Yap-Sandiego Ancestral House
- Crocolandia in Talisay City
- The Jungle Restaurant in Mactan
- Skywalk and Edge Coaster
- The Carbon Market
I have not been to all of these places. I hope to go to Fort Dan Pedro this month. I almost certainly going but it depends on how my feet are doing. I almost went three years ago but someone told me it was very small. Many forts are small. Chances are, I’ll go when Jessie wants to go shopping but I hope she has time to go too. My problem is getting anyone to understand my Southern accent. How I can say SM mall wrong is beyond me but somehow I manage. When I took a taxi from my hotel to SM Mall the taxi driver had a hard time understanding SM. I suppose that was just a freak event and I did get there. For the return trip, I carry the hotel cared in my billfold and pull that out. The girl at the stall where I bought my phone had no trouble understanding me.
If I have time, or maybe I’ll just make time, I will also go see the Taoist Temple this month. Another place I’ve always wanted to go. Years ago I read that you have to walk up the mountain to get to it but that doesn’t appear accurate. That’s why I have not been. I’ll likely be going to the temple this month and if not, I’ll try to see it next month. I have a lot planned for next month though. So I may have to skip my trip to Cebu City in December. Right now, I’m planning on making two trips to Leyte in December. One for a wedding. No it isn’t mine. Jessie has family that plans to wed in December and then later in the month we will return for her Dad’s birthday on New Years.
I have been to Basilica Santo Nino several times and Magellan’s cross is right next too it. I have been to the cross each time as well. They have a museum in the church that I have not seen because it was closed the one time I did try to go. The main attraction for Catholics at this church is the Santo Nino that is hundreds of years and believed to be blessed. The line to visit the Santo Nino is usually long so I’ve only seen it from a distance. It is in an old area of town. There are many street vendors in the area. There are lots of fruits to see. It is not far from Colin Street which is the oldest street in the Philippines.
On and around Colin Street there are lots of electronic shops and much of it is very low priced. You can get some great deals there. Colin Street has a bit of a reputation and from the looks of it, it is probably deserved. There are many street people there. I have been warned many times about wearing jewelry there. I don’t wear much of that. Not long before I came to the Philippines, Jessie found her mothers Saint Christopher’s necklace in her home. Jessie usually puts that around my neck when I go out. I must say, it is very special to me. Jessie’s mom died when she was around 9 or 10 years old. Something that is much harder for Jessie than she is willing to speak of. That’s usually the only jewelry I wear and it is under my shirt. I consider it an honor.
Tops or The Top is something people native to Cebu City will tell you about. Some find it to not be worth the trip. I certainly plan go to. From what I can tell, it is a nice romantic place to visit at night with your girl. It is said you will have a grand view of Cebu City and you might be able to see Bohol as well. I have in the back of my mind to visit The Top this month too if I can work it in and my nagging feet.
When I first moved to the Philippines, I lived quite close to the crocodile park in Talisay. Unfortunately, I was also quite broke. It was okay though, they were a wonderful three months. I bought George, a Filipino monkey while walking around Talisay and I have fond memories of that little guy. I never made it to the park, which would have been a lot cheaper than George was. I would like to find my way back to the little zoo where I bought George someday. Maybe one day I will and will go see the crocodile park in Talisay as well. I passed by it several times but I never made it inside the park.
Most of the other places I’ve listed, I don’t know a lot about and have not visited there. This list will serve as my own guide of places to visit in Cebu City. Once I visit them, I’ll add a new article about them. Time to start making the list of things I’ve yet to do in Cebu City shorter.
You might want to consider a Cebu City tour package. I have not used this tour guide but a friend has and highly recommends them. For more information contact Tony Araneta at (+63) (32) 238-6625 or his cell phone at +63 918-902-8738. For more information also see Philippines Travel Guide by Mark.
Of course there are many more things to do in Cebu City. girl watching at SM and other malls is always a good idea. I really do think you should make every effort to visit The Jungle on Mactan Island. Good food and a great host and entertainment you will not find in any other restaurant in Cebu City. The Jungle should be part of your things to do in Cebu City. And give me your own list of things to do in Cebu City, I’d love to add to this list.
Filed under: Living in Cebu
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