Metro Cebu encompasses twenty percent of the total land area of the whole island province, Mactan Island included.
It includes the Queen City of the South, Cebu City, the Industrial Capital of the Southern Philippines, Mandaue, and Lapu-lapu City, nicknamed as the Historic Resort City, to name a few.
Within its boundaries are highly urbanized cities, great beach resorts, historical places and many more all rolled into one. There is no question why Cebu is considered the gateway for the central and southern Philippines, and the reason why so many tourists flock here throughout the whole year.
There are a lot of things that you can do in Metro Cebu but the list below are the places that you should try to visit.
Shop at the Shopping Malls
Considered as the most urbanized part of the province, Metro Cebu is home to a lot of business establishments. SM Cebu, located near the main port area, and Ayala Center, located at the heart of Cebu City’s business district, are the two main shopping malls of the whole province. If you’re looking for something, dine in or you simply want to cool yourself considering the province’s hot climate, then these malls are the most ideal places to go to.
A Bountiful Rest at the Right Places
Cebu has its own international airport and seaport, making it one of the main converging points and a destination hotspot as well for tourists, whether they are coming from within or outside the country.
Because of that, the hospitality industry has become one of the main income drivers of the province. You can easily spot a hotel or two as you drive along the metropolitan area, giving you a lot of options when you want to stay for a night or two. And if you want some real quality hotel service then here are a few special mentions.
Radisson Blu in Cebu City is one of the best business hotels in Cebu and the Shangri La at Mactan is a world class hotel resort. The Marriott is literally annexed to Ayala Center and Diamond Suites will definitely give you a good night sleep at affordable prices. The Marco Polo will bait you with their delectable cuisine and the Henry Hotel perfectly combines art with comfort in their services. There are more but then again, this isn’t a hotel guide so we’ll have to stop here.
Enjoy Peace of Mind at Taoist Temple
Cebu City is a bustling place full of smoke, noise and garbage. That is why a visit to this place is like stepping on a side of Cebu City that you have never seen.The Taoist Temple is located on Beverly Hills (not the one in the USA) and the first thing you’ll notice after stepping here is the silence. This Chinese temple is built for the worshippers of Taoism but it is also open for non-worshippers as well.
Make sure you bring a taxi or any sort of personal transportation with you as this place is not accessible by public transport. You can take a stroll here, climb the iconic 81 steps or just laze around and relax at the great atmosphere that this place provides.
Experience the Thrill Rides at Crown Regency Hotel
Crown Regency Hotel is an iconic establishment in Cebu, but it’s not because of it being a five star hotel. It is mainly due to the fact that this hotel can offer you a thrill ride you wouldn’t be able to experience elsewhere in the Philippines. The hotel is the tallest building in Cebu and the management have put that height advantage to good use by creating a sideways roller coaster ride, more than 400 feet above the ground. Dubbed as the edge coaster, this will give you a truly “breathtaking” view of the whole city.
Caution – this is not for the faint-hearted. But if you’re still raring up for it, you can also try their zipline experience, from the main tower to another. Currently, the hotel has started construction to increase its height so that it can add new rides. Now that is worth the wait.
Visit the Basilica del Santo Niño
If you are a devout Catholic, then you should visit this place. This church, founded way back in the early 1500s, holds historical significance. Considered as the Mother and Head of all Churches in the Philippines by the Pope himself, it was also home to the iconic image of Sto. Niño.
Movie Theater Hopping
The biggest malls in the province also sport the best movie theaters. If you’re into watching the latest on the big screen, then pay a visit to Ayala Cebu or SM Cebu and watch it on IMAX. There are a bunch more on different malls so choosing which one is completely up to you.
A Blast from the Past in these Historical Sites
Cebu is home to a lot of historical landmarks. One of the most popular would be Lapu-lapu’s monument in Mactan, the Magellan’s Cross and the aforementioned church. There are also museums like the Museo Sugbo and the Yap Sandiego Ancestral House. These places have a story to tell, and if you are interested, all you need to do is visit them.
Enjoy the Beaches
The whole country, including Cebu, blesses us with great coastlines and beaches. The main reason for the abundance of beach resorts in Mactan is this. So if you want to enjoy a dip in a great beach paired with great views, all you need to do is take a cab and head for Mactan Island.
If we were to talk about food, the first thing that would come into mind if you’re in Cebu would be the Lechon Baboy. The Philippines is known worldwide for this delicacy, and Cebu, in particular, roasts up the “best pig”. So when you are visiting this place, the one thing you should never forget to try out is sticking a piece of that mouthwatering, crispy skin of the lechon baboy along with its sumptuous meat in your mouth. Did that got your stomach growling?
Get the Best “Dried” Deals at Taboan Market
Are you a fan of dried fishes? How about dried squid? The Taboan market offers a very wide variety of dried seafood, and once you step inside, you will end up smelling like dried fish afterwards. But if you can ignore that smell and you want the best deals of dried seafood, then this is the place to go.
More to Do in Metro Cebu?
So, have you been to these places yet? Do you have your own list? Metro Cebu still has a lot to offer for you so scout them out. Mark them beforehand and visit them the next time you come here.