Cebu is a province of the Philippines located in Central Visayas and consists of a main island and 167 surrounding islands and islets.
Cebu City, the capital city of the province is known as the Queen City of the South because of its strategic and economic importance in the country.
It is the second largest city next to Manila in terms of economic growth.
Although it has grown its economy remarkably over the years, the city never left behind its history, culture and natural beauty.
Here are amazing facts to make you fall in love with this place all over again.
- It’s the Philippines’s oldest and first capital city.
Cebu became the first Spanish Colony after a local ruler Rajah Tupas signed a treaty with conquistador Miguel Lopez de Legazpi in 1565.
It officially attained its city status in February 1937.
2. It has the Philippines oldest street
If Manila has a famous Divisoria, Cebu has Colon Street.
It is the oldest street in the country and the home for retail and businesses in the city.
Up until today, businesses are very much alive.
It is now one of the tourist spot in the city with its night market that sells really cheap finds.
3. The oldest school in the Philippines and in Asia is in Cebu
Previously known as Colegio de San Ildefonso, University of San Carlos is the oldest school in the country.
It was founded by Spanish Jesuits in 1595.
4. One of the biggest festival in Asia is held here
Sinulog festival is an annual cultural and religious festival to honor the Sto Nino (Baby Jesus).
It is celebrated on the 3rd Sunday of January in Cebu City.
It is one of the grandest and most colorful festivals in the Philippines.
This festival draws thousands of pilgrims and tourists from around the world every year.
However, if you’re joining with friends make sure to plan your meeting place ahead of time as there would be network shutdown for security purposes.
5. Cebu produces some of the finest acoustic guitars
Cebu is also known for creating affordable yet high quality acoustic guitars.
Many professional and aspiring guitarists have visited the place to try buying one and they’re satisfied with what they’d got.
Most of the guitar manufacturers are family-owned enterprises passed on from one generation to another.
6. World-famous lechon is here
Lechon is the national dish of the Philippines.
Almost all celebrations should be celebrated with a big lechon on the table.
Lechon is a pig stuffed with herbs, spices and other secret ingredients, skewered on a bamboo pole and roasted whole over hot coals.
Cebu City is known as “The Lechon Capital of the Philippines” because of its great tasting lechon.
It’s golden red skin is crunchy and the meat is tender, juicy and flavorsome.
7. Dancing Inmates
Have you watched the first dancing inmates video in youtube?
That was in Cebu.
Prisoners perform dance routines as part of their daily exercise and rehabilitation which unexpectedly became viral in 2017.
8. Cebu once had a railway system
At present, Cebuanos are battling over the horrendous traffic in the city.
But now everyone knows that Cebu City once had a railway system.
It was a 57-mile railway that ran all the way from up north in Danao to Argao, one of the municipalities in the south
However, the operation stopped after the World War II because the damages from the bombings were severe and beyond restoration.
Now, the government is doing its best to address Cebu’s traffic by making a new railway system.
Cebuano’s are excited because the new railway is seen to be operational by 2022.
9. It’s the only place in the world to dive with thresher sharks
Malapascua is a small island in the northern tip of Cebu.
It is the only place in the Philippines, if not in the world, where you get to encounter thresher sharks.
Sightings of thresher sharks happen in Monad Shoal, an under water island near Malapascua.
Thresher sharks usually hunt in the deep and go over the sunken island early in the morning for some cleaning sessions.
10. Cebuanos are the first Filipinos
Ruy López de Villalobos, a Spanish explorer who sailed the Pacific from Mexico, named Cebu, Bohol, Leyte, Negros and Panay as “Las Islas Filipinas” making the inhabitants the very first Filipinos.
The name “Las Islas Filipinas” is in honor of Philip of Austria who later became King Philip II of Spain.