Things to do

TOUR and SIGHTSEEING



Dubbed as one of the safest and the fast-rising economies among the ASEAN's premier cities aside from their capital, Cebu can bring you both worlds: the exciting and the interesting. Here are just some of Cebu's terrific getaways and what you could do while you are in Cebu.

Visit Cebu's historical landmarks and breathtaking tourist spots such as the Basilica del Santo Niño at the heart of the city, Magellan's Cross, the Temple of Leah, TOPS, the holy Taoist Temple, the Mactan Shrine, Fort San Pedro, Cebu's ancestral homes, Sirao Flower Farm, Buwakan ni Alejandra, Capilla Sta. Ana Maza Garden, Ruins and Old Chruch of Oslob, Omagieca Mangrove Garden, Bantayan's Bontay Baywalk, Olango Wildlife Sanctuary, Butong Rice Terraces and other historical sites worth seeing.

The Sirao Flower Farm

Barangay Sirao, Cebu City

Sirao Flower Farm is a hillside barangay in the outskirts of Cebu and its main attraction is the blooming of the Celosia flower which may last up to 10 weeks beginning with its blooming. The flowers come in different vivid colors and quite unique in this area. Also called the Cock’s comb or the “burning flower”, as the Greeks called them, the Celosia flowers (local name is “burlas”) look like a fire burning when planted close together and in full bloom, hence the name. When you are here during the blooming season (which takes place June to January during rainy season), you may find yourself inside a tulip field similar to the Netherlands of Europe.


Buwakan Ni Alejandra

Balamban, Cebu

As Cebu’s new pride and gem, the Buwakan Ni Alejandra (Alejandra’s Flower Garden) is now ruling the airwaves of Gaas, Balamban, Cebu. Launched in May 2017, this brand new flower paradise of attraction at the heart of Balamban is taking the netizens by storm. Comprised mainly of different and colorful flowers, the charming and yet adorable nirvana of vivid flowers arranged in fantastic sight is just a few minutes drive from downtown Cebu City (only 32km from the city).

The flower garden has more than 200 species of endemic blooms that sit in a 700 square-meter of private property at the slope of the mountain in Sitio Bunga, Brgy. Gaas, Balamban, Cebu.


Miguel Gee Abas Jr.

The Capilla Sta. Ana Maze Garden

Capilla Santa Ana Museum, Toledo, Cebu

Just a 5-minute taxi ride from downtown Metro Plaza Toledo City is the Capilla Sta. Ana Maze Garden, and see for yourself the verdant London-inspired maze-like garden. This intricately-woven garden mimics one of UK’s awe-inspiring maze garden with an addition of a tour of the Capilla Sta. Ana Museum and Community Center on the same place. In this museum, you will find relics of saints and also considered as one of the largest collection of antiquities in the Philippines, you will be given a 30-minute historical tour of the artifacts before you got to solve the labyrinth maze.


The Samboan's Kawa Hot Bath

Fantasy Lodge Cebu Resort, Samboan, Cebu

Imagine being "cooked" in a giant cauldron (or Kawa) at 40C for 45 minutes, while you are "soaked" in steaming hot water with a choice of herbs and essential oils to release the panuhot from your body. All of this while viewing a grand panorama of the sea (actually, you are poised to admire the Negros Island and the Tañon Strait as your stunning backdrop) while you are simmer. This experience is just like the Kawa Hot Bath in Tibiao, Antique.

But you can enjoy the same adrenaline rush at the Fantasy Lodge Cebu Resort in Brgy. Dalahikan, Samboan, a cliff-side town. The trip from Cebu City down south to this winding coastal road town will take you just a few hours drive (4 hours to be exact with less than PHP200 bus fare) in one of the yellow buses bound for Bato (via Barili).


The Ruins and Old Church of Oslob

Cuartel, Oslob, Cebu

A 3 hours ride from Cebu City is the Ruins and Old Church of Oslob, also known as Nuestra Señora de la Inmaculada Conception is the oldest church in Cebu City was gutted by fire years ago leaving only the Spanish Architecture. Beside the church is their Ruins, these two Spanish Infrastructure that still exists in Oslob entice tourist attraction.


Simala Shrine

Simala-Lindogon Church Sibonga, Cebu

This much-visited shrine is within the Manastery of the Holy Eucharist in Sibonga, Cebu, run by Marian monks. On a huge, beautifully-designed wooden altar sits the statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary encased and painted in gold. This is the place where, sometime in 1998, it is said the Virgin Mary image shed tears. Today, people continue to believe in its miraculous healing powers as the testimonial letters of healed people fastened near the altar appear to affirm.


The Omagieca Mangrove Garden

Bantayan, Cebu

The Omagieca Mangrove Garden is located between the towns of Sta. Fe and Bantayan at the famous Bantayan Island Cebu, where the Obo-ob Mangrove Eco Park shows how this system helps in the development of the marine life that serve as the breeding ground for several species of fish. These Mangroves look like the ones at the Sumilon Island where numerous variety of fish are now thriving.

Touted as the restaurant right inside the Obo-ob Mangrove Eco Park, the Omagieca Mangrove Garden Restaurant offers some of the best delicacies of Bantayan Island. So, while you are on tour to visit or explore the mangroves, dine in a cooler atmosphere at the Omagieca! Experience walking on a bamboo platform (walk way) on your way to the restaurant and see the natural ambiance of the resto right along the shoreline.

Aside from dining and mangrove exploration, you can enjoy kayaking and boating inside the eco-park with just a small amount of entrance fee.


The Bontay Baywalk in Bantayan Island

Madridejos, Bantayan, Cebu

One of the fascinating charms of Bantayan Island is its version of Siargao’s Cloud 9 Boardwalk. The town of Madridejos’ Bontay Boardwalk is a 187-meter footbridge that could be found in the Kota Park of this charming town off the coast of Bantayan Island, a 3 to 4-hour bus drive away from downtown Cebu City via Cebu North Terminal. Once you get to the Hagnaya Port in the town of San Remegio, hop in a ferry ride from the port and be at the Santa Fe town, Bantayan Island, in less than one hour. Here, you can fetch a tricycle ride and take you to the town of Madridejos to catch a glimpse of the famous Bontay Boardwalk.

This bay walk connects the shore to a majestic watch balcony overlooking the ocean of the Visayan Sea. Additionally, witness both the terrific sunrise on the morning and a majestic sunset in the evening while feeling the cool sea breeze, as the balcony has a 360-degree view of the ocean.


Jun Villegas

The Olango Wildlife Sanctuary

San Vicente, Olango, Cebu

The Olango Group of Islands is located just 5km across Mactan Island to the east. Consisting of 6 satellite islets (namely Gilutongan, Sulpa, Caohagan, Pangan-an, Nalusuan, and Camungi), the islands have one of the largest concentrations of migratory birds found so far in the country. Of the 97 species of birds in Olango, 48 of these are migratory while the rest is endemic to the islands.

A gem of a find for the busy and on the budget wanderlusts, the Olango Wildlife Sanctuary is a perfect itinerary while integrating your trip with diving, snorkeling, and exploring around with the islands’ great beaches are a wonderful experience to escape the hustle and bustle of the metro.


The Butong Rice Terraces

Brgy. Butong, Argao, Cebu

Did you know that there are also stunning rice terraces in Cebu and not just in the northern Philippines’ Ifugao region or in Bali, Indonesia? Be amazed of Cebu’s mountain view barangay of Butong in Argao, located just 65km south from downtown Cebu City. The man-made rice terraces stretched from two century-old balete trees and were believed to be constructed by a local farmer in 1982.

There were natural springs emanating from the ground near these balete trees that serve as the terraces’ irrigation system. Discover how these man-made marvels are changing the landscape of Brgy. Butong in Argao, Cebu where each layer of the terraces is supported by rock walls.


Temple of Leah

Brgy. Busay, Cebu City

Just like the world famous Taj Mahal and the dubbed Bridge of Love (San Juanico Bridge), Temple of Leah also professes the eternal love of Teodorico Adarna to his late wife Leah Villa Albino-Adarna.

This Roman inspired structure showcases the explicit designs and delicate Greek mythology statues (collection of Leah) which is now open for the public. Visit and witness this awe worthy edifice located in Brgy. Busay.


The 10,000 Roses

Cordova, Cebu

Experience Korean ambiance and hospitality at the 10,000 Roses Cafe & More located in Brgy. Day-as Cordova, Cebu. Here, witness 10,000 artificial LED roses "planted" on the ground as a tribute to the city’s love-affair with nature and as a campaign against throwing garbage in the environment. The site is open from 10 AM until 10 PM where tourists come to grace witness and photograph the artificial flowers, especially at the start of dusk.

While there is a minimal fee of only PHP20 (management calls it as "environmental fee", as oppose to entrance fee), because, as they said, "it's more of an environmental fee to protect the environment", on which they added, "Visitors must pay the fee at the Municipal Tourism Office at the Municipal Hall before they can proceed to the area where the coffee shop is located." Anyway, the fee is a small amount going to a big cause!


Lugar-Escanilar

Magellan's Cross

Santo Niño, Cebu City, Cebu

It was in 1521, that the first ever European to arrive in the Philippines, Ferdinand Magellan was recorded. He planted a giant black cross to symbolize the coming of the Roman Catholic Faith in a sacred spot, around which a small chapel was built on what is now known as Magallanes St. in Metropolitan Cebu.

This marked the beginning of Christianization in Asia. Interestingly, much like the Sistine Chapel, The ceiling of this quaint little chapel had paintings depicting various eras and events of Cebu's history.

Magellan's Cross remains in the very same spot where it was supposed to have been originally planted but its protective wooden overlay, said to have been chipped away by people, believing it had miraculous healing powers had been damaged and now has been encased in Tindalo wood and properly secured. Magellan's Cross is located in front of the old Cebu City Hall building.


The Sinulog Festival

Cebu City

Sinulog, pronounced as "See-noo-log" is a Cebuano word meaning "like the movement of water currents". And like a strong undercurrent that can grip you... this... one of the most festive, colorful events in the cultural spectrum of the country can hold you in awe. The grand festivities which happens every 3rd Sunday of January

Sinulog is actually an ancient ethnic dance performed by the early Cebuanos to pay homage to their gods. With Ferdinand Magellan's coming in 1521 and his gift of a Sto. Niño (Child Jesus) statue to Rajah Humabon's wife, the event not only introduced Christianity to Cebu but it became a foundation for the Sinulog's relevance. A depiction of Queen Juana raising the Sto Nino and blessing her subjects to ward off illnesses and demons became an integral part of the Sinulog Festival.


Clyde Uy

Basilica Minore Del Sto. Niño De Cebu

Osmeña Boulevard, Cebu City

Built in 1565, by Miguel Lopez de Legaspi and Father Andres de Urdaneta, this basilica houses the oldest and most celebrated relic in Philippine Christian history: The image of Senor Santo Nino (Infant Jesus). This was actually a present given to the reigning Queen Juana by Ferdinand Magellan during her baptism in April of 1521. Sometime after, a fire destroyed the structure but was rebuilt in 1602 and restored in 1740.

In a novena every Friday, thousands of devotees kneel and pray at the Basilica and every 3rd Sunday of January a giant celebration known as The Sinulog Festival, much like a Mardi Gras is held throughout Cebu.


Fort San Pedro

A. Pigafetta Street, Cebu City

Enjoying the recognition of being the oldest and smallest fort in the country, Fort San Pedro served as a stronghold of Filipino revolutionaries towards the end of the 19th century. Heading the ground-breaking rites when work first begun on May 8, 1565 was Miguel Lopez de Legaspi. Completed in 1738 with an inside area of 2225 square meters, 20 ft high walls with 8 ft thickness and towers about 30 ft high from the ground, it helped the Spaniards ward off Muslim raiders.

During the war years, 1941-1945, Fort San Pedro served as an army camp for Japanese soldiers and after the Liberation of the country, for American troops. Today it is under the care and auspices of the National Museum, which displays gold coins, lockets and other artifacts taken from the old Spanish galleon, San Diego.


fabulousphilippines.com

Lapu-Lapu Monument

Lapu-Lapu City, Mactan Cebu

Known to be one of the most revered Filipino figures in history, Lapu-Lapu is considered Philippines' earliest hero for resisting foreign domination. At the time, the chieftain of the area, Lapu-lapu and his men defeated Ferdinand Magellan, leader of the Spanish fleet and his troops in the famous Battle of Mactan. The Lapu-lapu monument stands within the Mactan Shrine facing Magellan Bay in Lapu-lapu City.


The Taoist Temple

Beverly Hills Subdivision, Cebu City

Sitting on a high plane about 300 meters from sea level is this temple of worship for Taoism, a religion that adheres to the teaching of ancient Chinese philosopher, Lao Tze. One might see the entrance to the temple as a mini Great Wall of China, with a chapel within the grounds, a library, a souvenir shop and a wishing well.

One of the sacred rituals is the climbing of the 99 steps, said to represent the 99 chapters of Taoism Scriptures and where, when one reaches the top (If he's still got the energy) lights up joss sticks and have their fortune told by monks.


Oscar B. Machacon Jr.

The TOPS

Busay, Cebu City

Perched atop a hill overlooking the entire city of Cebu is this quaintly beautiful viewing deck, popularly known as TOPS. Rising 2500 ft above sea level, Tops is located in the Northern part of the city in the town of Busay, a short 30-minute drive from downtown Cebu.

It affords visitors and sightseers a breathtaking, postcard-perfect view of the city's skyline, the modern, tropic island of Mactan and Bohol province's majestic mountains. In the early evening when the sun sets in all its glory, Tops becomes perfect for love-crazy newlyweds, honeymooners hiding from relatives and friends and romantic lovers who might feel like Anthony and Cleopatra reigning over Egypt.

For some old-fashioned family-bonding, the place has cozy spots for picnics or even some nature-friendly camp sites where you can pitch your tent if you decide to stay overnight. Bring some light sweaters though as the night mountain air could be a bit chilly.


Casa Gorordo

Lopez Jaena St., Cebu City

One of the few remaining landmarks of Spanish colonization in Cebu that still stands is Casa Gorordo. Located on Lopez Jaena street in Barangay Parian, Casa Gorordo was built by Alejandro Reynes Y Rosales. Sometime in 1863, it was sold to Juan Isidro de Gorordo and since then, till 1979, it housed several generations of the Gorordo family including the first bishop of Cebuano roots, Bishop Juan Gorordo.

The house stands as a representation of a typical Spanish home, giving the visitor an idea of what it was like to lead an "Illustrado's" life. It was mostly constructed with wood and stones while the floor was laid out with Molave and the roof with Terra Cota tiles. After undergoing some renovations but keeping its natural, Spanish aura, it opened to the public as a museum in 1983 falling under the Cultural Heritage program of the Ramon Aboitiz Foundation.


The Heritage of Cebu Monument

Parian district, Cebu City

Located in the historic Parian district, The Heritage of Cebu Monument is an array of sculptures made of concrete, bronze, brass and steel depicting events from the history pages of Cebu such as the baptism of Rajah Humabon, the reigning monarch at the time and the Battle of Mactan between Lapu-Lapu and Ferdinand Magellan and their men. With the sculptured scenes carved by nationally-famous sculptor, Eduardo Castrillo, this monument celebrating Cebu's history was completed in the year 2000.


Cebu Provincial Capitol

N Escario St, Cebu City

Inaugurated on June 14, 1938 by President Manuel L. Quezon, the Cebu Provincial Capitol is situated along Osmeña Boulevard and serves as the seat of the provincial government. It is known for its elegant ballroom designed in an art deco style and with its enormous crystal chandeliers and full length windows one tends to conjure images of a fairy tale setting.


Carlo Caracena

Fuente Osmeña Circle

Cinco Centrum, Fuente Rotunda, Osmeña Boulevard, Cebu City

A focal landmark for Cebu in the heart of the city is a rotunda cum park with a quaint-looking, picturesque fountain constantly oozing with what seems like fresh mountain water. It is the famous Fuente Osmeña Circle.


Chapel of San Pedro Calungsod

Cebu South Road Properties, Cebu City

Recently constructed in 2012, this chapel was in honor of a canonized young Visayan saint, by the name of Pedro Calungsod, Located beside the SM Seaside city, it boasts of a rather modern design but with unmistakable solemn walls and ceiling making the place perfect for prayers and meditation.


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Colon Street

Colon Street in the downtown area of Cebu, Cebu City

Colon Street in the downtown area of Cebu, regarded as the first and oldest street in the Philippines, having been a part of the original town’s design made by Miguel Lopez de Legaspi in 1565.

In previous decades it gained some notoriety as a sort of a red light district where street women walked its long stretch in search of the fast buck. Today, Colon Street has evolved into a hub of commercial activities with the establishment of shopping malls, restaurants, movie theaters and fashion boutiques, helping to regain its fascinating history-laden past.


Carbon Market

M. C. Briones St, Cebu City

This much-visited shrine is within the Manastery of the Holy Eucharist in Sibonga, Cebu, run by Marian monks. On a huge, beautifully-designed wooden altar sits the statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary encased and painted in gold. This is the place where, sometime in 1998, it is said the Virgin Mary image shed tears. Today, people continue to believe in its miraculous healing powers as the testimonial letters of healed people fastened near the altar appear to affirm.