Top 20 Cebu Tourist Spots and Attractions to Visit this Summer

Summer is here, and Cebu is calling! It’s time to embark on a journey through Cebu’s tourist attractions on one the most stunning islands in the Philippines. Known for its pristine beaches, rich cultural heritage, and vibrant city life, offering an array of tourist spots and attractions to suit every traveler’s taste. If you’re looking for a relaxing beach getaway, an adrenaline-pumping adventure, or a dive into history and culture, Cebu has it all. 

From the sublime raging waters of Kawasan Falls to getting up close and personal with gentle giants at the Oslob Whale Shark Watching, or immersing yourself in the vibrant floral paradise of Sirao Garden, Cebu is a treasure trove of wonders and rich stories waiting to be explored and discovered.  Here are the 20 best Cebu tourist spots to check out for your next getaway.

20 Best Cebu Tourist Attractions

1. Heritage of Cebu Monument 
Located along Sikatuna Street, these sculptures are made from concrete and metal depicting important events from Cebu’s colonial history. This monument was made by Filipino artist Eduardo Castrillo alongside architects Heradio Espanol and Ildefonso Santos, which started construction in 1997 then finished towards the end of the 2000s. This monument is a testament to Cebu’s importance in Philippine history and the people who were involved. This is an open tourist attraction and is relatively close to the sea and airports, so this is a good first stop on your journey. 

2. Mactan/Lapu-Lapu Shrine
This is also known as the Liberty Shrine which is located within Lapu-Lapu City. It is a bronze statue which represents the figure of Lapu-Lapu the native chief who defeated Ferdinand Magellan and drove back the Spaniards in the Battle of Mactan on April 27, 1521. It is a reminder of Filipino bravery and the protection of national freedom against invaders. This monument is also close to the Cebu Heritage Monument as well as the seaports and airports, this place is a nice place to take one of your initial pictures during your getaway.

3. Yap-Sandiego Ancestral House 
An old wooden house situated at Mabini Street, this was said to date back to the 1600s as one of the first Chinese houses in the city. Originally belonging to Don Juan Yap, a wealthy merchant and his wife, which had a mix of Chinese and Spanish architectural styles. You can take a look at the artifacts and antiques which show the multicultural history of the Philippines.

4. Temple of Leah 
Is an ancient Roman-styled monument built in 2012 which is located at Roosevelt Street Busay. The temple has also been dubbed the “Taj Mahal of Cebu” because it was built to honor Teodorico Soriano Adarna’s wife: Leah Albino-Adarna. Teodorico built the temple to store his wife’s antiques, books, Chinese jars and various other antiques as he had promised his wife who was ill of cancer at the time to find safe storage for them. Besides the gorgeous sculptures and architecture there is also a brand new nearby Italian restaurant, Ristorante Teodorico, that is open in the afternoons.

5. Sirao Flower Garden
If you want to be transported into flowery paradise then the Sirao Flower Farm/Garden which is established on a hilltop within Barangay Sirao. Also termed as the “Little Amsterdam of Cebu” because of its organized rows of celosia flowers or cockscombs, or wool flowers which are a species prominent in the Netherlands. There are many aesthetically pleasing photos to be taken from structures such as the mini windmills or giant hand platform. 

6. Taoist Temple 
This amazing structure was built in 1972 and was funded by the Chinese-Filipino community in Cebu. Meant as a place of worship at the mountainside subdivision of Beverly Hills, Lahug – it has become one of the biggest Cebu tourist attractions. Here you can experience rich Chinese symbolism that is cleverly integrated into its architecture. Among them being the 81 steps to the temple which reflect the 81 chapters in the Taoist/Daoist scripture. 

7. Museo Sugbo 
A museum which is also called the Cebu Provincial Museum located in the former Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center (CPDRC) jail in Cuenco Avenue. The building was designed by Domingo de Escondrillas and started construction in 1871, which initially served as a prison housing various criminals and Katipuneros jailed without trial and eventually executed. Filipino guerillas were also imprisoned during the Japanese occupation in the 1940s. This monument serves as a reminder of the constant shifts and repurposing of historical events. 

8. Casa Gorordo Museum
A large mansion built in the 1850s along what is now called Eduardo Aboitiz Street, near the Parian area which is the oldest city in the Philippines. First owned by Alejandro Reynes y Rosales, was then bought by Isidro Gorordo, a merchant from Spain. Four generations of his descendants lived in the house including the first Filipino bishop of Cebu, Juan Gorordo. You can browse the curios inside to get a better understanding of Cebu’s cultural identity. 

9. Fort San Pedro
Under the command of Miguel López de Legazpi, first governor of the Philippines, Fort San Pedro is a military defense structure which can be found near A. Pigafetta Street. It served as the first Spanish settlement during the country’s colonization and was overrun by Philippine revolutionaries towards the end of the 19th century. You’ll come across great views near the pier and a look at Spanish architectural styles. 

10. Magellan’s Cross Pavilion
A stone kiosk which marks the spot where the first Christian Filipinos were baptized posted along P. Burgos Street near Cebu City Hall. Housed within the octagonal building is a tall wooden cross supposedly planted by Ferdinand Magellan and his fellow explorers. Take a look at a piece of the Philippines religious history on this site. 

11. Sto. Nino Basilica
This church is the oldest Roman Catholic church in the country and was built supposedly on the spot where the image of the Sto. Niño, the city’s patron saint that shows Jesus as a black Holy Child. It serves as a place of prayer and pilgrimage for believers. 

12. Simala Shrine
It is also known as the Monastery of the Holy Eucharist or the Our Lady of Lindogon Shrine, known for its beautiful architecture which welcomes many visitors who pray to the image of the Virgin Mary located in Sibonga. You can spend your time in prayer or relaxation wondering at the marvels of its inner sanctums.

13. Moalboal Sardine Run
Now if you are looking to witness some exciting wildlife, check out the Moalboal sardine run located near Panagsama Beach. Dive in and view the swarm of beautiful forms made by the school of fish movements. This place is a well-known snorkeling tourist spot for its diverse ocean life. 

14. Oslob Whale Sharks Watching
But if looking at swarms of sardines doesn’t catch your interest, you could also go to Natalio Bacalso Avenue, Oslob where there is an agency dedicated to whale watching and underwater photography. Locally known as “Tuki”, you can get a chance to swim with these fascinating gentle giants. 

15. Carnaza Island
One of the new Cebu tourist spots situated near Malapascua, it is a secluded island resort shaped like a turtle. Besides the usual beach fun, there are interesting places like Skull Cave where you can find real human skulls which were used as a refuge by Japanese soldiers during the Second World War. Since the place is newly established, it’s not as crowded or commercialized as other beaches.

16. Sumilon Island Sandbar
Home of the first marine protected area in the country in 1974, this beach boasts white sands and clear waters containing all kinds of natural wildlife. The island is a place to go scuba diving, island hopping and cave scouring, there is also a resort which offers a sand bar and infinity pool.

17. Cebu Safari and Adventure Park
If you’re looking for safe options to observe animals then you can go to the Cebu Safari and Adventure Park which is located in Barangay Corte, Toril. Go and see tigers, zebras, giraffes, and llamas all in their own habitats. 

18. Bird Watching Olango Island 
Want to view the majesty of different species of birds? You can head to Olango Island to see one of the few bird sanctuaries in the Philippines. Just be sure to visit during peak migration periods which are during November to February. It is advised that September to May is the best time to go bird watching, also observing  2 hours before the highest tide to get the most out of your trip. 

19. Kawasan Falls
This breathtaking, multi-leveled sanctuary is hidden within the mountains of Barangay Matutinao, Badian. This popular Cebu tourist attraction consists of cascading waterfalls which come from the Matutinao River with lush vegetation surrounding the area. However, some locals attribute ghosts and supernatural mysteries to the place, such as their belief that “engkantos” dwell around the place asking for human souls. 

20. Osmena Peak 
This popular hiking destination is the highest peak in Cebu located in Badian also accessible through Barangay Mantalongon. It is a series of landmass formations along the Mantalongon Mountain Range in Dalaguete. Dalaguete is also known as the “Vegetable Basket of Cebu”, so expect to see a lot of vegetables as you make your way up. From the top you can see the whole range of mountainous terrain, with sunlight piercing through the clouds and jagged rocks. If you’re looking to really experience the sublime, then you won’t make a mistake going there.

Explore the Wonders of Cebu
As you can see there are many adventures to be had in Cebu! It is an island filled with a rich tapestry of culture and natural wonders. From the tranquil oasis of Kawasan Falls to the majestic heights of Osmena Peak, there are still countless Cebu tourist spots waiting to be experienced.

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