Cebu

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It was in the province of Cebu that Ferdinand Magellan first set foot in Philippine soil back in 1521. Even before the Spaniards came, trade with the Chinese already flourished in the province. Prosperity has continued, and today, Cebu City, known as the Queen City of the South, has become a thriving, highly urbanized center that comes second to Manila’s bustling metropolis.

Only a few minutes away from the city are numerous white sand beaches, crystal blue waters, and swaying palms, making Cebu a perfect destination for both business and leisure. Mactan Island is a coral island and famous scuba diving and beach site. It is also the site of the Export Processing Zone. Malapascua Island is endowed with white sand beaches and crystal clear waters, and the west coast is ideal for swimming and snorkeling. The sleepy little market town of Moalboal was one of the first places where scuba diving caught on in the Philippines. From here, you can dive straight off Panagsama Beach, which is home to an extraordinary array of coral, anemones, sponges, and a swarming host of brightly colored reef fish.

Olango Island in Cebu supports the largest concentration of migratory birds found in the country. These birds migrating from Russia stop here en route to Australia.

Images courtesy of Philippine Department of Tourism

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Beach life
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Kawasan Falls

Climate

Cebu's weather is relatively moderate, having no distinct wet and dry season, the perfect vacation spot for seasons. One can bask under the sunshine the whole year through since Cebu is blessed with a tropical climate with a generally fair temperature range of between 23 - 33¬?C. Coolest temperature can be felt in January and warmest in May.

Underwater Recommendations

Mactan Island is a coral island and famous scuba diving and beach site. It is also the site of the Export Processing Zone, which presently employs a 37,118-strong workforce. Mactan Island, located across Mandaue City, encompasses a total land area of 150 hectares. Malapascua Island - Malapascua, a term that literally means "Unfortunate Christmas," is a paradise where time stands still. The island is blessed with white sand beaches and crystal clear waters. The west coast is especially ideal for swimming and snorkeling. It takes about three hours by land from Cebu City to reach the island, which lies at the northern tip of Cebu and west of Leyte.

Getting There

An international destination with flights from Tokyo, Singapore and Hong Kong arriving almost daily, Cebu is home to the Mactan International Airport. Cebu is just a short flight - an hour - away from Manila by plane or 22 hours by boat. It is an ideal jump-off point for other tourist attractions in the Visayas and Mindanao.

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