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Cebu is located in the Central Visayas region in the Philippines. Its cultural heritage traces back from the 16th century Spanish colonial era. Its famous port, Fort Santiago, is a historic icon that was used as the Spanish base to protect the island from invaders.
Sugbu, as commonly known by locals and also known as the Queen City of the South, is the oldest city and first capital of the Philippines and the center of Christianity in the Philippines. Cebu has a lot of activities to offer from its white beach in Moalboal to the glamorous and picturesque view in Sirao Peak. If this place is not yet on your bucket list, then it’s time to make some adjustments. The energy, the food, the people and the culture are a must-try.
How to Get to Cebu City, Philippines
If your travelling from outside the Philippines, you just need to book a flight from your country to Mactan International Airport. From Mactan you can ride a taxi or grab car. Getting to Cebu City will take you roughly 1 or 2 hours, so tit is best to arrive at the airport during weekends to avoid traffic.
Getting around the City is not that tedious. Rent a car, or cabs aren’t hard to find. Renting a car is recommended so you get to decide your own pace of travel.
Where to Eat in Cebu City, Philippines
Cebu is known for its mouth watering food, refreshments, and delicacies. Here are the top 5 places to eat in Cebu City, Philippines.
Rico’s Lechon // Lechón, or grilled whole pig, is very famous in the Philippines during festivals, ceremonies, gatherings and celebrations. It’s a dish that should always be present during huge gatherings. Cebu is known for its Lechon and if you want to experience the best tasting lechon, Cebu Rico’s Lechon is waiting for you.
Address: Vibo Place, N Escario St, Cebu City, Cebu
Phone Number: (032) 384 7151
Cafe Laguna // In 1991, a simple and small restaurant started in Lahug and became a hit in Cebu. From the first restaurant 25 years ago, Cafe Laguna is a must go place not just for Cebuanos but for everyone who visits Cebu City. Serving sumptuous meals which was perfectly molded by time and experts, they continuously maintain their distinctive mouth watering foods that will surely give you the best experience shared with family and friends.
Address: Ayala Center, Cebu City 6000
Phone Number (For Reservation): +63 32 233 8600
Lantaw Native Restaurant // Lantaw is a local term which means “to look out.” The restaurant in Cebu is dubbed “Lantaw” because of its geographical location, where diners get to enjoy an overlooking view. Lantaw in Cordova, known as floating restaurant, offers an open-air ambiance that’s best enjoyed during sunset. They mostly serve grilled and seafood dishes. Lantaw in Busay, on the other hand, offers a magnificent view of the city at night. Both restaurant serves delicious delicacies that will surely fill your stomach!
Address: Busay, Cebu
Phone: +63 933 950 5323
STK ta Bay! // Homey ambiance and great food! STK ta Bay used to be an ancestral home. The family decided to turn it into a restaurant serving home-made dishes. This restaurant offers a local way of cooking that is famous in the Philippines — Sinugba (grilled), Tinola (fish soup), Kinilaw (raw fish meat). It got its name from these three main dishes. Most of the dishes served here are local dishes. So, if you want to explore the food culture of the Philippines, then this is a good place to start!
Address: 6 A. Climaco St, Cebu City, Cebu
Capitol Branch : 253-4732/256-2700/263-1191
SM Seaside Branch: 230-7989
SM City Cebu Branch: 238-5325
Hukad // Hukad’s heritage and delicious foods started back then 1982 in Lahug Cebu City. They started serving native Filipino food in a relaxed and homey ambiance; from then it became a hit and soon become notable not only to locals but also to tourists dining destinations. Hukad is the perfect place for family and friend celebrations. This restaurant serves unlimited rice. This is one of the few reasons why Hukad is one of the best places to spend your cravings, since Filipino are known rice eaters. Truly one of the top Filipino Restaurants for Cebuanos.
Address: Ayala Center Cebu, Biliran Rd, Cebu City, Cebu
Phone Number: 403-9293
Things to See in Cebu City, Philippines
There are many places to go in Cebu City after 5:00 pm. City life starts when the sun goes down and the stars starting to twinkle in the sky. Now let’s go and explore the City.
Colon Street // Known as the oldest street in the Philippines, your trip to Cebu isn’t complete without walking to Colon and eating some well-known Filipino street foods. An amazing experience will be felt during the night where sidewalks are full with for sale colorful backpacks, clothing, shoes, vegetables, smartphones and whatnot. Don’t be afraid to engage with the locals, it’s natural for Cebuano/Cebuana to smile even if they don’t know you. You can just smile with them or say “Kamusta”, a local term for “How are you?”. Don’t forget to take some photos with the vendors, they smile even though they don’t have complete dentures.
TOPS, Busay // This is probably the most common place to think of when you’re in Cebu and it’s nighttime. After all, the view from this place is more than awesome…it’s worth the trip. The place remains an amazing and picturesque tourist destinations in Cebu with its 360-degree overlooking view of the entire city. Restaurants, cafes, chilling spots, and flower gardens can be explored in Tops Busay. The view at night is a perfect getaway as you can witness the city lights that sparkles in the evening.
Mango Avenue // Probably considered as one of the most known streets in Cebu and as one of the most ‘alive’ areas as well. The short strip from former Rustans to the corner where National Bookstore is has bars, a comedy bar, karaoke places, and food strips. All ages and walks of life are present.
Dolce Cafe Belle Fleur // This café may be thought of as just any run-n-the-mill coffee shop. But its location, a nice array of foods, and the view that you can’t just get anywhere, are the reasons why this is a must-visit.
IT Park // Boasting of having the most number of BPO companies present in one place, IT Park offers more than just a good IT location. It has the most number of BPOs and is open 24/7, with several coffee shops, restaurants, and fast-food abound the place. What’s more, Cebuanos are becoming as health-conscious, so you’ll see several joggers, no matter the time of day.
Basilica Del Santo Niño // If Colon is the oldest street in Cebu, Basilica Del Santo Niño is the oldest Catholic Church in the Philippines founded in 1565, which bring many locals to worship on a daily basis since the Catholic Church holds regular mass. The Church walls offers paintings, amazing archways and overall piece of architecture that is inspiring. You can also witness some of it 17th century relics in the museum or books covering all subjects. Magellan’s cross is also visible in the vicinity of the church premises where you can visit and offer some prayer as well.
Cebu Heritage Monument // Cebu is full of stories to tell with centuries full of invasion, battles, and revolution from the Spanish regime. The monument is built from dark stones and is a mixed sculpture of key historical figures that are thought provoking and incredibly mysterious.
Bring a Bisaya dictionary with you. If you have a friend who knows the way around the city, then that would be perfect! Oh, and be very vigilant with your valuables in the city.
Guide and Photos by Julie Nyland | DIVE.in
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