Cebu City is one of the most popular and historical cities in The Philippines. It is situated on the island of Cebu and is the oldest country in the country. Most people go to the Philippines for the beaches, but Cebu is one of the historical and bustling cities that also makes it one of the most Instagrammable spots in the Philippines.

The Philippines is one of the most budget-friendly destinations to visit and differs markedly from its mainland southeast Asian counterparts. The Philippines is a country where most people are fluent in English and a place of rewarding diversity. Try exotic food, tropical beaches, stunning lush rainforests, and steaming mountains. The Philippines is a destination that people love to return to.


The Most Historical Colonial City In The Philippines

The Spanish began arriving in The Philippines soon after the time they started arriving in the Americas. The first European to arrive in the Philippines was the Portuguese explorer in the service of the Spanish, called Ferdinand Magellan. Magellan landing in Cebu on April 7, 1521. Magellan was killed at the Battle of Mactan but the remaining members of his expedition managed to make it back to Spain.

  • Magellan: The First Person To Circumnavigate the Globe (Completed by His Surviving Crew)


In 1565 conquistadors arrived led by Miguel López de Legazpi together with Augustinian friars and took possession of the island soon afterward. Cebu went on to become the Philippines' first Spanish settlement and the first capital. In 1594 it officially became a city - the second in the country after Manila. It is also considered to be the birthplace of Christianity in the Far East.

  • 1521: Arrival of The Spanish Explorers
  • 1565: Arrival of the Conquistadors
  • 1594: Cebu officially Designated A City

After the Spanish and American War, it became a possession of the United States for fifty years (except for when it was occupied by the Japanese) and gave the USA an unofficial empire.

  • American: The Philippines Became An American Possession After The Spanish and American War

Related: Cebu in The Philippines Is Home To So Many Incredible Experiences: Here's What Tourists Love To Do There

Cebu City Today

Today tourism is a major part of the economy and is one of the most visited destinations - for both international travelers and domestic travelers. One can see the Filipino-Spanish heritage buildings in Cebu City such as Fort San Pedro, Basilica del Santo Niño, Magellan's Cross, and the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral. One can see the oldest street in the country, temples, colonial churches, mountains, pristine beaches, great museums, and even go swimming with the whale sharks.

  • Nickname: Cebu City Is Popularly Called Queen City of the South
  • Population: Around 1 Million - Metro Population Around 2.8 Million

It is considered the capital of Southern Philippines and really is a must for anyone visiting the country.

While the city boasts the longest colonial history in the archipelago, it doesn't actually have three many historic sights. Although there are some historical colonial-era buildings to be found. There is plenty to see and do and the city is energetic - just be prepared for its notorious traffic.

Related: A Travel Guide To The Philippines: Tourists Should Plan Their Trip Around These 11 Things

When To Visit - Avoid the Wet Season

The Philippines are tropical so there is no winter season. But there is a wet season and if one comes at the wrong time of year and it can get hot and uncomfortably humid. The best time to visit and enjoy the beaches and outdoor activities are December through May.

  • When To Come: December Through May
  • December and January: The Best for Beach Weather
  • February and March: Ideal for Hiker and Backpackers (Plenty of Outdoor Adventures)
  • April and May: Clear Skies and Great For Diving and Gazing off Mountains
  • Worst Time: During The Wet Season From May To October (Also The Risk of Storms and Intense Humidity)

Things To See And Do In Cebu City

There are far too many things to see and do in Cebu to list out here. But one of the must-see temples is the Cebu Taoist Temple. it is one of the famous landmarks in Cebu City built by the city's  Chinese community. It is a colorful and multi-tiered complex located inside the Beverly Hills Subdivision.

Of course, there are beaches (what would the Philippines be without its beaches?), but there are also stunning small islands to discover, wrecks to dive, and whale and thresher sharks to swim with. There are nearby 170 nearby islands to see!

Try out the Philippino food. Have a go at exploring the many quality restaurants in the city as well as the many street foods as well.

No one needs to be bored while in Cebu, the problem will be not having enough time and not wanting to return home!

Next: These Are The Best Destinations In The Philippines For Solo Travelers