Tourist Spots in the Philippines

10 Cebu City Tourist Spots You Need to See

They call Cebu City the Queen City of the South, and it definitely can lay claim to that title. Not only is it the center of trade and commerce in the Visayas, the city is also dotted with destinations and attractions to see.

If you’re headed to the Queen City of the South soon, check out our list of Cebu City tourist spots to visit!

1. Fort San Pedro

There’s plenty of history to be seen in Cebu City, and Fort San Pedro is one such historic location. First built as a wooden fort around 1565, the current structure is a triangular bastion fort that has been around since 1738.

Nowadays, Fort San Pedro no longer houses soldiers but a museum, an open-air theater, and the Cebu office of the Department of Tourism. If you’re looking to be transported back to colonial times, Fort San Pedro is the place to go.

  • Type: Tourist attraction
  • Location: A. Pigafetta Street, Cebu City, 6000 Cebu
  • Directions: Fort San Pedro is a 40-minute drive from the Mactan-Cebu International Airport. From the airport, take Lapu-Lapu Airport Rd to M.L. Quezon National Highway. Continue on to the Mandaue Causeway/Ouano Ave and Sergio Osmeña Jr Blvd to A. Pigafetta Street.
  • Budget: Entrance fee of P30 for adults, P20 for students and children.
  • Activities to do: Visit the museum and check out Spanish paintings, documents, and sculpture. Take a photo of the statues of Miguel Lopez de Legazpi and Antonio Pigafetta outside the fort walls.
  • Travel tips: Bring a fully-charged phone and a power bank. Take lots of pictures!

2. Tops Lookout

Nothing beats the view from the top, and in Cebu’s case, it’s hard to find something that matches the view from the Tops Lookout in Cebu City. Tops Lookout offers a great panoramic view of Cebu City, the surrounding sea, and the islands just across the Queen City.

  • Type: Tourist attraction
  • Location: Cebu Transcentral Highway, Cebu City, Cebu
  • Directions: If you’re in Cebu City, you can take a jeep from JY Square Mall in Salinas Drive and get down at Plaza Housing. From there, you can hire a motorcycle driver to take you to Tops Lookout.
  • Budget: Entrance fee of P100
  • Activities to do: Take a romantic partner with you. The view and the chill air is perfect for snuggling together with your boyfriend or girlfriend.
  • Travel tips: Bring your own food and water. The price of items sold at Tops can be a little steep.

3. Colon Street

Colon Street holds the distinction of being the oldest street in the Philippines. Named after Christopher Columbus, Colon Street was developed by Spanish explorer Miguel Lopez de Legaspi.

While it may be the oldest street in the country, it’s got a lot of modern offerings for the Cebu visitor. The Metro Gaisano Mall and other shopping establishments are here, as well as the University of the Visayas. Further up the road is the Colon Obelisk, which details the street’s history.

  • Type: Tourist attraction
  • Location: Colon Street, Cebu
  • Directions: Colon Street is a 50-minute or so car ride from the Mactan-Cebu International Airport. From the airport, take Lapu-Lapu Airport Rd to M.L. Quezon National Highway. Continue on to the  Mandaue Causeway/Ouano Ave and Sergio Osmeña Jr Blvd to Legazpi Street. Just follow Legaspi St. to Colon Street.
  • Budget: N/A
  • Activities to do: Shopping!

4. The Heritage of Cebu

Cebu has always played an important part in the country’s history. The baptism of Rajah Humabon and Hara Amihan by Magellan was the start of Catholicism in the country, and Cebu also claims to be the birthplace of Pedro Calungsod, the country’s second Catholic saint. All of this history is celebrated in “The Heritage of Cebu”, a monument by renowned sculptor Eduardo Castillo.

  • Type: Tourist attraction
  • Location: Sikatuna St, Cebu City, Cebu
  • Directions: From the airport, take Lapu-Lapu Airport Rd to M.L. Quezon National Highway. Continue on to the  Mandaue Causeway/Ouano Ave and Sergio Osmeña Jr Blvd to A. Bonifacio Street. From A. Bonifacio Street, head on to Sikatuna St.
  • Budget: No entrance fee but donations are welcome.
  • Activities to do: Take lots of snaps of this monument documenting Cebuano history.

5. Basilica del Santo Niño

Cebu City hosting one of the biggest celebrations of the Santo Niño in the country should come as no surprise. Cebu City is the home of the Minor Basilica of the Holy Child, popularly known as the Santo Niño Church. It was founded in 1565 and is the oldest Roman Catholic church in the country.

  • Type: Tourist attraction
  • Location: Santo Nino Chapel Lane, Cebu City, Cebu
  • Directions: From the airport, take Lapu-Lapu Airport Rd to M.L. Quezon National Highway. Take Marcelo Fernan Bridge and U.N. Ave to Marciano Quizon in Mandaue City. Continue on Marciano Quizon to A.Soriano Avenue/Mandaue Causeway/Ouano Avenue. Follow Mandaue Causeway/Ouano Avenue to Osmeña Boulevard.
  • Budget: No entrance fee
  • Activities to do: Respectfully take pictures of the church. Be mindful as there may be services being held inside.

6. Magellan’s Cross

Magellan’s Cross is one of the most recognizable symbols of Cebu City, so your trip to Cebu wouldn’t be complete without seeing it. Planted by Ferdinand Magellan when he arrived in 1521, the cross is housed in a chapel next to the Basilica del Santo Niño.

However, you aren’t actually looking at the original cross. The real cross is inside the wooden cross on display in the chapel. This was done to preserve the cross, as people had been chipping at it believing it to be miraculous.  

  • Type: Tourist attraction
  • Location: Santo Nino Chapel Lane, Cebu City, Cebu
  • Directions: Magellan’s Cross is just a four-minute walk from the Basilica del Santo Niño. From the Basilica, walk towards Osmeña Boulevard. Walk along  Osmeña Boulevard until you can turn right to P. Burgos Street. Turn right again when you reach Magallanes Street.
  • Budget: No entrance fee
  • Activities to do: Leave a candle at the foot of Magellan’s Cross, as per tradition.

7. Plaza Hamabar

Not every attraction in Cebu City calls back to the Spanish times. Plaza Hamabar, for instance, pays tribute to Cebu’s pre-colonial past. Plaza Hamabar pays tribute to Rajah Humabon, also known as Sri Hamabar.

Humabon was the first Filipino ruler to embrace Christianity and enter into a blood compact with Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan. The monument honoring him shows him covered with tattoos, as was the practice with Visayans before they were colonized by Spain.

  • Type: Tourist attraction
  • Location: Mabini Street, Cebu
  • Directions: Plaza Hamabar is a 40-minute drive from the Mactan-Cebu International Airport.  From the airport, take Lapu-Lapu Airport Rd to M.L. Quezon National Highway. Take Marcelo Fernan Bridge and U.N. Ave to Marciano Quizon in Mandaue City. Continue on Marciano Quizon to A.Soriano Avenue/Mandaue Causeway/Ouano Avenue. Follow Mandaue Causeway/Ouano Avenue to Osmeña Boulevard. From there, head to Vicente Gullas Street and the to Mabini Street.
  • Budget: No entrance fee

8. Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral Museum

Housed in a bahay na bato built during the 1800s, the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral Museum houses a collection of religious relics like a tabernacle and altar panels made of wood encased in etched silver. The upper floor shows photographs that trace the growth of the Catholic faith on the island, memorabilia, as well as statues of saints from various parishes.

  • Type: Tourist attraction
  • Location: P. Burgos St, Cebu City, Cebu
  • Directions: The Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral Museum is right across Plaza Hamabar, so just cross Mabini Street and you’re there.
  • Budget: Entrance fee is P55 for adults, P25 for children, and P100 for foreign tourists

9. Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral

The Metropolitan Cathedral and Parish of Saint Vitalis and of the Guardian Angels — Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral for short — is the ecclesiastical seat of the Metropolitan Archdiocese of Cebu. Just like the Basilica del Santo Niño, it’s one of the first churches in the Philippines.

The history of its construction is also interesting, as it began in 1689 but was only completed in 1909 because of frequent interruptions and a lack of funds. It was also destroyed during the Second World War, with rebuilding taking until 1950.

  • Type: Tourist attraction
  • Location: Mabini Street, Cebu City, Cebu
  • Directions: The Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral is right across the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral Museum. Just cross Urdaneta Street and you’re there.
  • Budget: No entrance fee.

10. Sirao Peak

If you’re craving from nature and a break from history, then head to Cebu City’s Sirao Peak. Also known as Mount Kan-Irag, Sirao Peak offers a stunning view of Lapu-Lapu City and Mandaue.

Even better, it’s considered by mountaineers as perfect for beginners – so you don’t have to worry if you’ve never climbed a mountain before. It also has a huge camping space, so you can take a large group of friends with you.

  • Type: Mountain
  • Location: Cebu Transcentral Highway, Cebu City, Cebu
  • Directions: It depends on the trail you plan to take up the mountain. If you’re taking the Budlaan trail, hire a habal-habal bound to Sitio Baugo, Budlaan. If you’re taking the Ayala Heights trail, head to JY Square Mall in Salinas Drive and hire a motorcycle driver to take you to Ayala Heights.
  • Budget: If you’re taking the Budlaan trail, the habal-habal fare is P25 pesos per person. For the Ayala Heights trail, the fare is P75 to P100 pesos per person for the motorcycle.
  • Activities to do: Hiking and camping under the stars.
  • Don’t miss: The Sirao Flower Garden, which is less than 30-minutes away from the peak.

Explore these Cebu City tourist spots now! Book your flights and hotel with Traveloka.


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