I’m one helluva lucky girl because I was able to avail our P112 for two- one-way ticket to Cebu last July via the Zero seat sale promo of Cebu Pacific. So, our only problem was our ticket going back to Manila. But thanks to PAL’s Payday sale, we were also able to avail a P800 each ticket Tagbilaran to Manila flight. I suddenly decided to also go to Bohol since we were already in the Visayas Island, why not make the most out of our trip right? Hence, the Cebu-Bohol trip of 2011, my first travel this year, Angelo and I’s anniversary trip.
My best friend, Aimee and his boyfriend, Bryan joined us in this trip. It is also their anniversary. Actually wanted to say thanks to Bry for being the busy bee since the day they told me that they’re coming with us. He was the one who found the hotel in Cebu, has the contact from Bohol and etc.
This trip has many firsts: First airplane trip with Angelo. Angelo’s first time to ride an airplane. First airplane trip with Aimee. First bonding trip of Aimee and me and our loves. Angelo’s first time in the Visayas.
And the rest, you’ll find it in the travel blog.
So here’s Day 1 to the Queen City of the South – Cebu
Our flight to Cebu was changed a week earlier from 4pm flight to a 12:55pm flight – which is in favor to us, because we will be arriving earlier than expected. Hehe. Prepare P200/pax for the terminal fee.
Aimee and Bry arrived at 9am there, because they were able to secure an earlier flight. They just went to Ayala Mall and Tabo-an Market. It’s better to buy danggit there (Tabo-an Marekt) than in other places – it’s just P400/kg. And the ¼ kg danggit that they bought is really a lot already.
To get to your hotel, if you don’t have anyone to pick you up, you have to ride the cab, fix rates are at P375 (airport taxi) or the metered taxis that still starts at P30. But our cab driver seems to be in a greedy mood, that he told me that he has a fix rate of P250 and I don’t find it fair enough. I told him to open his meter and he said he would but will still add P50. I told him, still not fair, so I called up Aimee and they had a fare of P200. So, the driver finally gave in to the right method and we ended up at P180, but still gave him P200.
We checked in at Cebu R Hotel (101 Don Mariano Cui St., Capitol Site, Cebu City) which is near the Robinson’s Mall and the Ayala and SM Malls just a few kilometers away. The airport and the pier are just a 40 minute drive.
Our room is big enough for us, with a double bed and 2 single beds, wifi access, complimentary breakfast, hot and cold shower – all for just P1,600. Just check on their website at http://ceburhotel.com for other rates.
Angelo and I arrived the hotel at 3pm. So we started our tour a little while after that.
We hired a cab to be able to tour around the city. The taxi driver gave us a fair rate – P800 going to Tops and P250 for every hour of our tour, which in the end totaled of P1,500.
Our first stop was supposed to be the Magellan’s Cross but since it’s too hard to park because the church is still quite busy because of the Sinulog, we decided to go to Fort San Pedro first.
The Fort of San Pedro is the oldest and smallest fort in the country. It was built by the Spaniards to repel sieges by hostile natives and Muslim pirates. Through the years, it served different purposes at various times in Cebu’s history – prison, classroom, garden – but now, it’s a museum-park where Spanish artifacts, documents, porcelain, swords and cannons are displayed. We made a wish in the wishing well and prayed to the Virgin of Remedies, the Our Lady of the Fort (Nuestra Señora de la Cotta). There is a P15 entrance and a minimal parking fee.
Our second stop was the Taoist Temple – Beverly Hills, Cebu. It is the center of worship for Taoism, built for the Chinese community. It has been dubbed as the most popular non-Catholic shrine in Cebu. Devotees would do their rituals on Wednesdays and Sundays. 99 steps to climb before you are rewarded with the it’s extravagant Chinese architecture topped with a pagoda-style roof, a mini Great Wall, a huge Mushu dragon and a good view of Cebu City (beautiful sunset views too). You can also pray in their prayer area and do the same rituals as with the devotees.
There’s no entrance fee BUT be ready for the masunget na guards. They close at 5:30pm so be sure to make an ample time for it’s an hour drive from the city proper. They don’t allow your tripods inside as well.
Our time was limited that is why we opted to go to Taoist Temple first before finishing the once in the city proper. If you have lots of time, it’s much better to finish the city tour before going up to Taoist and Tops.
We drove back to the city proper and went straight directly to the most famous Magellan’s Cross, but were disappointed because we were not able to go inside, because they were still cleaning it’s inside from the weekend’s Sinulog.
Beside the Cross, where the first Christian Baptism took place in our country, is the center of the oldest Christian devotion in our country, the Basilica Minore del Sto. Niño. It houses the image of the Sto. Niño de Cebu, a representation of the child Jesus, which was brought by Ferdinand Magellan in 1521. Lucky us, there’s an on going mass inside and it felt like we’ve been blessed. We just prayed and lighted candles at the side of the church. Since, the Sinulog festival just ended the day before, the whole church’s look is very festive. It felt as if that we were also there in the Sinulog, even if we were a day late.
Our next stop is the Tops Hideout. My most favorite place in Cebu, which is located on top of Busay Hills, 2000 feet above sea level where you can see a magnificent view of Cebu and Mactan Island. Best visited at night when lights of the island are all on and the temperature is very cold. Tops is really breathtaking. There is actually a bell where in you and your friend or partner rings it while holding each other’s hand (to unite the bond) – once for a firm partnership, twice for a lasting friendship, or three times for never ending love. It’s also said that the process should be repeated on anniversaries to strengthen the bond. Since, it is our anniversary, both couples – we did the ritual twice and another one for Aimee and me. Description of the Bell: A bell has a soothing sound that seems to linger in one’s ears. This sound best signifies the feeling of endless bonding between individuals. Partners around the world have long used this sound to portray their lasting relationships or feelings for one another. This could be used in a business partnership, true friendship or symbolize everlasting love. Entrance fee is P100/pax.
To our very last stop in Cebu, the newest attraction for the thrill seekers and for those who want to conquer their fear of heights, the Sky Experience Adventure in the Crown Regency Hotel and Towers. For P900, you will able experience both the Edge Coaster (from the 38thfloor) and the Sky walk (from the 37th floor) already, another breathtaking experience from Cebu. Package also includes a sumptuous buffet at the hotel’s 37th floor and a choice of t-shirt, mug or key chain for the souvenir. Both adventure will let you experience and enjoy the 360-degree view of Cebu because you’re going to walk around the whole building. Imagine how many different possible things you think could happen while walking on the edge of the building, pretty crazy. I even thought that the strong wind that night would blew me away. Haha! Just like what I said, it’s like we paid for our death, but then again, we didn’t pay for the ride, we paid for the experience (yes, taken from EAT Danao). It’s kinda hard to explain the feeling on top, I was both nervous and excited at the same time, I think it’s for you to experience and find out yourself to know the real feeling behind this Sky Experience.
For more information check: Http://www.skyexperienceadventure.com