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Monday, December 7, 2009

~ Cebu Manila Trip - Day 4 @ Cebu/Mactan ~

30th Nov 09

Today we will have our "Twin city" tour in Cebu and Mactan. Woke up at 6plus in the morning and we had our breakfast at Diplomat Hotel. (Our usual Chicken congee, American breakfast and hubby ordered the Filipino breakfast set).
9:00am - Paul will be our guide for today and he came on time to pick us up before 9am. Our first stop is at The Heritage of Cebu Monument at Colon Street (located at downtown of Cebu and it's considered the oldest street in Philippines). It is a tableau of sculptures (each telling the major history and events of Cebu) made of concrete, bronze, brass and steel and built by a renowned artist.

Paul gave a detailed insight on the significant historical events that happened in Cebu.
Next, we arrived at Fort San Pedro. It is the oldest and smallest fort in Philippines built by the Spaniards to repel the hostile natives. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fort_San_Pedro

An old Well where soldiers get their water supply.

We went inside the fortress and had a short tour within. It has now turned into a garden which used to house soldiers, food, guns etc...
To restore the fort, Paul showed us that part of it was made of coral stones (which were hauled from under the sea).

10:30am - Magellen's Cross. Cebu being the oldest city has a very rich history. The Magellan's Cross is planted by Ferdinand Magellan upon arriving in Cebu in 1521.

The original cross is encased inside the wooden cross that is found in the center of the chapel. This is to protect the original cross from people who chipped away parts of the cross for souvenir purposes or in the belief that the cross possesses miraculous powers.

Basilica of Santo Nino is a 16th Century Church in Cebu city. It was built on the exact spot where the image of the Santo Niño, a sculpture depicting the Holy Child Jesus was founded by Spanish explorers in 1565 preserved in a burned wooden box which was left behind during the 1521 Magellan expedition.
We saw many prayer ladies outside the church and if you give them some coins, they will help to perform the traditional Sinulog prayer dance ritual. Afterwhich, the candles will be given back to you where you can place it back at the foot of the cross.
11:20am - Taoist Temple. This is more familiar to us.. :) It was built by the Chinese community and there is a flight of 81 steps to climb up. On the top, you can have a scenic view of part of the Cebu city. We did our prayers and drank tea in the temple.


End of Part 1

30th Nov 09 (Part 2)

We crossed over the bridge and arrived at Mactan for our lunch and 2nd part of the tour.
You have to try Sutukil in you are in Mactan! According to Paul, it drives from the Cebuano words on the three ways fishes are cooked: Su is for sugba or grilled, tu is for tula or prepared into a soup and kil is for kilaw or turned into a raw fish salad.

There are many seafood to choose from.. Fishes, Prawns, Crabs, Lobsters, Shells, Seaweeds, Sotong etc.. You pick the seafood and tell them how you want them to be cooked. Paul helped us to select the range and we went to 2nd floor awaiting our lunch to be served.

Here comes our lunch! Let's see.. we had 2 crabs (chilli and butter), 1 Lapu Lapu fish (part of it grilled and the rest made into soup), 2 sotong (Grilled), 1 Chapchoy (vegetables), 2 Rice Platter and canned drinks. Enough to feed 4 adults and 2 kids. Total Cost: 2230p (~70 SGD). Hubby and I love the grilled sotong best! It is very tender and delicious. Denver likes the crab more. :)

Nearby the Sutukil resturant is the Lapu Lapu Shrine. It was built in honor of Datu Lapu-Lapu (a native chieftain) who defeated the Spanish soldiers and Ferdinard Magellan during the Battle of Mactan in 1521.
View of Mactan Bay at low tide. Exact location where the battle of Mactan was fought where Ferdinand Magellan died in the hands of Lapu Lapu. A couple of steps away, we saw a house named "Balay ni Gloria" with simple native furnitures in it. I believe this is where President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo stays when she is in Mactan.

Further down, there is a stretch of stalls selling souveniors where you can find all sorts of stuff. (e.g. jewelries made of shells, beads, bags, keychains, tshirts, shoes, shells and wood-carved decorations, guitars)

Due to the shortage of time, we were unable to visit some of the Mactan beach resorts. Like Shangrila and Plantation Bay. Hence, we went to Maribago Blue Waters instead and have a look at how are the beaches in Mactan.
It was low tide when we were there. Still the waters seems clear but I think the beaches at Bohol are more attractive with softer sand.
Giant size Chess set on the beach at Maribago Blue Waters.


Our final stop of the tour: Alegre Guitars Factory. We had a look at how the guitars are made and there is a wide range of guitars on display for sale. We also bought 2 small guitars for the kids too.
Here's Paul playing a tune. ^_^
It has been a great day! Thank you Paul who has taken us on a wonderful tour around Cebu & Mactan. He even help to take us where Hubby can buy Dried Danggit and Pusit for his colleague in Manila. Before sending us back to the hotel, they stopped by Raintree Mall to collect our laundry too!
5:30pm - Back at Diplomat Hotel.
We quickly bath and took a cab down to Ayala Mall for our dinner. Paul has recommended some resturants that we can try in Cebu. (Golden Crownie, Laguna Garden Cafe, Lighthouse). We decided to go for Laguna Garden Cafe to try the authentic Filipino dishes.

Our Dinner: Steam rice, Laguna Fried Chicken, Brocolli with Shrimps, Filipino beef with onions, Hot chocolate, Buko in shell and Cold Calamasi.

The resturant looks classy and their service is good. Food is pretty nice and we are happy with our dinner.

We pop by another resturant to continue with our desserts. The children wants to have Ice-cream. :)
Yummy! Factory Fudge and Banana Split.
========================================================
Breakfast @ Diplomat - 420p
Cebu & Mactan Tour - 2300p
Lunch @ Sutukil - 2230p
Misc Buys - 556p
Guitars - 500p
Dried Danggit & Pusit - 240p (add gifts)
Shamrock - 120p
Laundry @ Speedy - 305p
Cab to Ayala Mall - 60p
Dinner @ Laguna Garden - 1024p
Dessert @ Dessert Factory - 250p
Dried Mango (Cebu) - 100p
Cab to hotel - 60p
Total - 8257p

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