Skip to main content

The Three Queens

    View of Cebu City from the Marco Polo Hotel

The introduction of daily flights between Cebu and Roxas City is a winner! Cebu, the Queen City of the South, has so much to offer its visitors - historical landmarks, museums, beaches, fine dining, lively nightlife, retail therapy options and a calendar full of cultural events. And it's a short flight away, just under thirty minutes.. 

    Sirao Garden

"The earth laughs in flowers." Ralph Waldo Emerson 

These colorful celosia flowers are the staple of the garden. Dubbed Little Amsterdam, the garden reminds one of the tulip fields in the Netherlands. There's also a token windmill and Cinderella's carriage. And as it was approaching Valentine's Day, there were decorative hearts around the garden.  It had been raining quite a bit in January so there were empty patches where gardeners were busy preparing the flowerbeds for planting.

There's a P30 fee to enter the garden. Seniors get a discount.
Barangay Sirao, Cebu

    Yap-San Diego House

The Yap-San Diego house in the Parian neighborhood is one of the oldest houses in Cebu. It dates back to the late 17th century. The façade is decorated with red lanterns for the Chinese New Year celebration.

155 Lopez Jaena Street
Parian District, Cebu City

    Temple of Leah

Some women inspire poetry. Others, love songs. Helen of Troy launched a thousand ships when she was abducted. Queen Leah Adarna has a Roman inspired temple dedicated to her from her adoring husband, Teodorico. 

    Leah V. Albino Adarna

"Leah V. Albino Adarna was chosen Matron Queen of her Alma Mater, the University of Southern Philippines. This nine-foot bronze statue portrays her composure and regal bearing when she was crowned. May the beholder discern her innate beauty, poise and genteelness." Teodorico Soriano Adarna

There is an entrance fee to the temple. Seniors enter free of charge. In Barangay Busay, Cebu.

   The Cross of Magellan

At the baptism of Rajah Humabon and his queen, Hara Humaway (or Hara Amihan) in 1521, a cross was erected by the expedition crew of Magellan to commemorate the event. Very little is known about Humaway except for a brief description written by Antonio Pigafetta who was the chronicler of the expedition and survived to tell the story. Humaway was given the name Juana at baptism after a queen of Spain. Queen Juana of Cebu was young and beautiful and wore a large hat made of palm leaves. She was shown a cross and a wooden statue of our Lady holding her child. She begged to keep the "wooden boy" to replace her idols.* It was later found in one of the homes in the village by the crew of Miguel Lopez de Legazpi who arrived in the Philippines in 1565. It is now in the Basilica Minore del Santo Niño, a few steps from where the Cross of Magellan now stands. 

* Source: The First Voyage Round the World - Pigafetta's Account of Magellan's Voyage. By Antonio Pigafetta. Translated by Lord Stanley of Alderley. 
Read also Who was Hara Humaway, the Queen of Cebu by Ligaya Caballes. 

Where to stay:
Marco Polo Plaza Hotel
Cebu Veterans Drive
Nivel Hills, Cebu

Where to eat:
Café Laguna 
The Terraces, Level 1
Ayala Center, Cebu City

Kayu Restaurant
32 Sanson Road, Lahug

How to get around:
Mark Bocog 
We were happy with how Mark took good care of us during our day tour of Cebu. When it started to rain, Mark brought us umbrellas while we were visiting the Taoist temple. He also made sure we saw as  much of the city as possible and guided us through the historical landmarks and patiently waited for us while we shopped for souvenirs. Mark was a careful driver especially as it was raining and we were driving up the hills.

Grab Car - the hotel can call Grab to arrange for car service.


Images by TravelswithCharie


Popular posts from this blog

Carlos "Botong" Francisco, A Nation Imagined

Carlos "Botong" Francisco, FILIPINO STRUGGLES THROUGH HISTORY Oil on canvas, 1964, (located at ManilaCity Hall) A National Cultural Treasure owned by the City of Manila
Carlos Botong Francisco: A Nation Imagined is the latest art installation at the AyalaMuseum in Makati to celebrate the 100th birthday anniversary of Carlos “Botong” Francisco (1912-1969), a Philippine National Artist. Forty paintings and lithographs were culled from various private collections to form this exhibition. Of the large scale paintings on display, Maria Makiling and Fiesta, both oil on canvas, are representative of the indigenous genre which Botong loved to portray. In Maria Makiling, Botong reveals a relaxed and recumbent woman with her legs dangling in the cool waters of the stream and playing with an exotic deer by her side. Fiesta is about how the Filipino people gather to celebrate an important occasion, be that a religious feast or a wedding. The central figures are dancing the tinikling, a po…

See Sicogon Now

Buaya Beach
It was summer in the Philippines and we really wanted to go to the Gigantes group of islands. But we had no desire to join the throng of beach pilgrims who wanted to take the iconic selfie from the hill above the white sand beach of Cabugao Gamay. So here we were on Buaya (crocodile) beach in Sicogon, waiting for our lunch to be served, enjoying a cool drink under the shade of this old Talisay tree and looking at the Gigantes islands from our comfortable roost.

Greenhills Shopping Center Revisited

Religious articles
It's been years since my last shopping trip to Greenhills Shopping Center. We were looking for some giveaways for a big meeting and Greenhills has an incalculable array of gift ideas. We started in the jewelry section and found a fresh pearl bracelet with an attractive and colorful accent stone for P95.00. We were able to bargain with the vendor since we were buying 50 pieces. She marked down the price to P70.00 for each bracelet.
Greenhills is divided into sections - handbags and accessories, clothing (separate sections for men and women), jewelry, home decor, souvenirs, Filipiniana arts and crafts, shoes and knick knacks. It's especially fun to shop here in November for Christmas decorations and gifts though the crowd might be unabearable. 
Many shoppers come to Greenhills to buy knock-offs. And there are gobs to choose from. Be careful though if you are bringing this to another country because Customs at your destination may fine you…