Being the oldest city in the Philippines, Cebu City boasts of a lot of tourist spots that everyone will enjoy. My family actually lived here for a while but I was still a baby then and can’t remember anything. It was my 2nd time here as a tourist. My first visit was just for about 5-6 hours since we are bound to Bohol that afternoon. So this time around, I checked out some of the popular tourist spots around Cebu.
1. Cebu City Tourist Spots – Fort San Pedro
From the airport, we just dropped our luggage to Crown Regency Hotel and head to Fort San Pedro. Fort San Pedro was still closed when we arrived, so we just killed time by posing for pictures in the park (Plaza Indepedencia) just right across it.
Fort San Pedro is like a smaller version of Fort Santiago in Intramuros, Manila. You can do a walking tour inside and check out the collections from the Spanish era.
2. Cebu City Tourist Spots – Cebu Heritage Monument
Since Casa Gorordo was closed as it is being used for the relief operations, we decided to check out other Cebu City tourist spots within the area.
Cebu Heritage Monument is about 15-20 minutes walk from Fort San Pedro. It is a wonderful sculpture about the historical events of Cebu.
3. Cebu City Tourist Spots – Yap-Sandiego Ancestral House
Just a few steps away from Cebu Heritage Monument is the Yap-Sandiego Ancestral House. Peeking through the doors and windows, I saw a lot of antique furnitures. We didn’t get inside since it is about to rain and we don’t have any umbrella so I just took the shot below and hailed a taxi right away.
4. Cebu City Tourist Spots – CnT Lechon
When you are in Cebu, it is a must that you taste Cebu’s famous lechon – roasted pig. Lechon We went to CnT to satisfy our cravings for the tasty lechon. CnT did not fail us. The skin is crispy delicious and the meat is flavorful. The restaurants looks like a canteen, nothing fancy, but it is one of the long time favorite here in Cebu.
Another popular lechon is from Zubuchon, we bought one in the airport to bring home in Manila. Zubuchon was acclaimed by the Anthony Bourdain as the best he ever tasted. I wonder if he also tasted CnT’s lechon since I like it better than Zubuchon’s. But since the one I tasted from Zubuchon was frozen and reheated, I would have to defer my judgment on which is the best.
5. Cebu City Tourist Spots – SM City Cebu
The sun is scorching hot and we were really tired and sleepy so we decided to make SM our pit stop to rest while waiting for the check-in time on our hotel. SM City Cebu has all the stores that you would expect from SM and some local Cebuano shops and restaurants. Perfect for shopaholics and window shoppers. It is larger than most mall in Manila, actually it is the 4th largest shopping mall in the Philippines according to Wikipedia.
I was also able to check-out the Northwing, which caters to the leisure market and upper class customers, during the meet-up with iLearners.
6. Cebu City Tourist Spots – Tabo-an Market
If you are looking for the best priced dried fish, Tabo-an Market is that place. You can buy here the famous danggit of Cebu. They sell all kinds of dried fish and squids. Make sure to haggle for the best price. They would seal the dried fish in plastic and you can also request it to be backed in a box so that you can easily transport it back home.
Please note that you would definitely leave this place smelling like dried fish so plan your trip accordingly. 🙂
7. Cebu City Tourist Spots – Taoist Temple
Taoist Temple is one of the popular Cebu City tourist spots. You’ll see why from This is my 2nd time here and it still look as magnificent as ever. Upon entry, they would hand you out a paper stating the rules. One major rule is you should not take pictures of the altar. Just follow the rules and you’ll be fine. You will also have a great view of Cebu City here.
8. Cebu City Tourist Spots – Mactan Shrine
Mactan Shrine, located on Mactan Island which is where the airport is, is another must-see tourist spot in Cebu. It is composed of The Lapu-Lapu Shrine, Magellan Shrine and a marker for Battle of Mactan. While we are here, we saw a lot of cute little kids wearing Santa Claus costumes. Apparently, kids from different towns and schools will have a Christmas presentation. Yeah, Christmas is really just around the corner.
Cebu City Tourist Spots – Lantaw Native Restaurant Busay
This is one of the best spot to have your dinner and cap off the night. It provides an amazing and scenic view of Metro Cebu. The delicious and reasonably prices food here perfectly match the great view. This is a perfect chill out place for family and friends.
Cebu City Tourist Spots – Basilica Del Sto Niño Cebu
I was saddened to hear in the news that the bell tower of Basilica Del Sto Niño Cebu was badly damaged due to the earthquake that happened a few months ago. It is the oldest church in the Philippines. Devotees flock here during its feast which is known as the Sinulog Festival, one of the most popular festivals in the Philippines.
Cebu City Tourist Spots – Magellan’s Cross
You haven’t been to Cebu if you don’t have a picture with the Magellan’s Cross. The cross is in a small chapel located just a few steps outside the Basilica Del Sto Niño Cebu. The ladies wearing yellow clothes would sell candles for P50 and they would perform the Sinulog dance while praying to Sto. Niño for you.
Sadly due to the recent earthquake, the chapel and the cross were also damaged and are now supported by wood to prevent it from collapsing.
Cebu City Tourist Spots – Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral
Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral is another beautiful church in Cebu. It is the seat of the Archdiocese of Cebu. It is just a 5-10 mins walk from Basilica Del Sto Niño Cebu. It is also walking distance to Cebu Heritage Monument and Yap-Sandiego Ancestral House.
We didn’t get inside as we need to check-out from our hotel and do the Sky Adventure Day Tour.
These are some of the must see tourist spots in Cebu. I created separate posts on other tourist spots we visited in Cebu that you also might want to check out:
Exploring Cebu Nightlife
Whale Shark Watching in Oslob, Cebu
Crown Regency Hotel and Towers Cebu: Classy Hotel and Adventure Park in One
There are other Cebu City tourist spots that I want to check out too, which are part of our original itinerary, but wasn’t able to visit. I guess this is a great excuse to come back again 😀 If you are creating an itinerary for your Cebu trip, here are some more places you can Google about:
National Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe
Papa Kit’s Marina and Lagoon
Rainforest Park Cebu
Please also share to us in the comments the other places in Cebu that are worth checking out!
This pretty much sums up what I feel about Cebu:
Thank you Cebu!
Very helpful article, I will travel to CEBU after the epidemic is over