Cebu at a glance
The city of Cebu is known as the “Queen City of the South” —and rightly so.
As the first Spanish settlement in the Philippines, it has some of the country’s most iconic heritage spots. As a major trading port and site for some of the nation’s fastest-growing industries, it reinforces its multiculturalism with progression. This heady mix of urban vibes and casual provincial airs makes it a favorite destination of those seeking a showcase of the harmonious co-existence of history, culture and modernity.
Explore the city’s rich past with a visit to its historical landmarks. Magellan’s Cross commemorates the moment Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan planted a wooden cross on Cebu’s soil to mark converting its locals to Christianity. The Basilica del Santo Niño houses one of the country’s oldest religious relics: a statue of the Child Jesus that dates back to 1521. Fort San Pedro is the smallest Spanish outpost in the Philippines, while the Casa Gorordo and Yap-San Diego Ancestral House give a glimpse into residential life in Cebu during the Spanish era. The Museo Sugbo showcases the province’s history. And if you can brave the cacophony, walk down Colon Street, the oldest street in the Philippines.
While you’re at it, don’t forget to stuff yourself silly with lechon (roast pig), which Anthony Bourdain called “the best pig ever” on an episode of his hit television show No Reservations.
No visit to Cebu is complete without a taste of its nightlife. Dive into a little debauchery at hip spots in IT Park or Crossroads. Or just park yourself at your hotel bar.
The famous Sinulog Festival, which celebrates the child Jesus, happens every third Sunday of January. The city hosts a wild, colorful street party attracting revelers from around the Philippines and the world.
(Source: Philippine Department of Tourism)