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Highlights of Cebu

Cebu City is the capital of the province Cebu, and regional center of the Central Visayas. The surrounding metropolitan area, known as Metro Cebu, is the largest in the Visayas, and one of the largest in the country, with a population of 2.3 million. It is the economic hub and the main port of entry of the Visayas.

Cebu City was the original capital of the Spanish East Indies. Later they moved the capital to Manila.

Metro Cebu is well equipped for tourism: There are beautiful white beaches on the coast, hotels, restaurants and resorts to suit any wallet, historic landmarks, bars and discos, cinemas and theaters, and everything else you need for your holiday.


Taoist temple

Detail of the taoist temple of Cebu

Taoist temple

The taoist temple, also known as the Chinese temple, built for the Chinese community in Cebu. It is open to anyone, as long as you abide by their rules. Photography is allowed outside the building, but not inside.

The temple is built on a hill, and when you walk around the temple you will also have a few nice views of the city.


Magellan’s cross

Magellan's cross, Cebu

Magellan’s cross

Explorer Ferdinand Magellan was the first European to arrive in the Philippines. According to tradition, he placed a Christian cross in what is now Cebu and converted a local tribe to Christianity. It is unclear whether Magellan’s cross survived, but according to many the cross is here in this chapel, encased in wood to protect it against the elements and against tourists chipping away small pieces.

Magellan, by the way, was killed in Cebu by a leader of a competing tribe. His crew went on and became the first people to sail around the world.


Fort San Pedro

Fort San Pedro, Cebu

Fort San Pedro

A triangular fort, originally built by Spanish conquistador Miguel López de Legazpi in the 16th century, to protect the first Spanish settlement in the Philippines, but improved and expanded in later centuries.


Heritage of Cebu monument

Heritage of Cebu monument

Heritage of Cebu monument

This monument, created in the late 20th century, celebrates highlights of Cebuano history and heritage, such as the first catholic baptism, the battle of Mactan (in which Ferdinand Magellan was killed), the major churches of Cebu, a Spanish galleon, and a catholic mass.


Santo Niño Basilica

Altar of the Basilica of Santo Niño, Cebu

Altar of the Basilica of Santo Niño

This church was built in the 18th century, at the spot of an earlier, 16th century, church, and elevated to the rank of minor basilica by pope Paul VI.

Inside the church is a museum devoted to the history of Christianity in Cebu.


Ayala and SM megamalls

Ayala mall, Cebu

Ayala mall

If you like shopping, head to one of the two megamalls in Cebu. Both seem to have every kind of shop and boutique, plus many bars and restaurants.

The malls are airconditioned to such an extent that you should consider wearing a sweater or a jacket.


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