I bet everyone is eager to have a break once in a while—a vacation that can put your mind at ease, relax your body, and the kind of vacation worth your hard work. Me too! But do you know what the downside of vacation is? Waiting.
It is awful to spend hours inside the airport waiting for your next flight. Or worse, waiting for your layover to be done. Fortunately, if you are stuck in the Cebu airport, that’s a blessing in disguise.
If you have 7-10 hrs to spare in your layover in Cebu, make it the best layover in your life by visiting these places that are minutes away from the airport.
Places to see in Cebu that are near the airport during your layover
1. 10,000 roses cafe
Yes, you read it right. The famous 10,000 roses cafe is only 35 minutes away from the Cebu Airport, and the entrance fee is 20 pesos.
This may be a little far compared to the other places that are near the airport, but because this is my personal favorite, it goes to number 1.
The best time to visit here is at night. You will see how the artificial LED-powered roses light altogether that will make you want to visit Cebu again.
2. Lapu-Lapu Mactan Shrine
Lapu-Lapu Mactan Shrine is by far the closest tourist destination in Cebu that is near the airport—7km away. It’s a perfect day to get to know our history too.
There is no entrance fee, so it’s a perfect day for you to visit historical events too. The monument serves to remind Filipino bravery, where Lapu-Lapu fatally wounded Magellan.
3. Shangri-la Mactan Cebu
If you have extra budget, since you are already in Mactan Cebu, you might as well visit Shangri-la, the most famous and expensive hotel in the city.
But since this is a hotel, there are many options for you here to savor your layover. However, you have to make sure that you only pick the day tour and visit.
It is also a win for you if you only want to relax. There’s a beach and spa here that you would enjoy during your quick stay.
4. Fort San Pedro Mactan
A must-see while in Mactan is the oldest and smallest fort in the Philippines, Fort San Pedro. A tourist place that you should never miss while you are in Cebu.
For only 30 pesos entrance fee, you will get the chance to visit this triangular bastion fort. It has two sides, one facing the sea while the other is the land, where the entrance is located.
Once you get there, you will first notice the cannons installed on the side facing the sea and a sturdy fence placed in front. It’s like visiting two tourist spots at one.
5. Magellan’s cross
When we hear the word Cebu, the next in mind is Magellan’s Cross. What is Cebu without it, right? The good thing is that it is only 12.9 km away from Cebu. You can go there quicker if you ride a taxi.
Magellan’s cross holds a huge part of Cebu’s history. It is where Ferdinand Magellan and his crew set foot in Cebu and was greeted by Rajah Humabon and accepted the Roman Catholic religion. The cross represents faith.
6. Cebu Taoist Temple
If going to the Taoist temple is your main goal during your layover, make sure to allocate a minimum of 1hr of your trip because you might find it a bit far from the airport.
Once you get there, don’t be surprised that there are no benches or chairs. Instead, you may use a rectangular-shaped cushion for kneeling while praying.
Moreover, another point to remember is throwing a coin and making a wish in their wishing well. Non-Taoism tourists do this as well, and you should do too.
7. Mountain view in Temple of Leah
After visiting the Taoism temple, and the Spanish era, if you still got time left, spent it at the temple of Leah -a roman style temple that is dedicated to Leah Villa Albino-Adarna.
Upon entering the mansion with its seven stories and 24 chambers adorned with Doric columns, you will find a museum, a library, and an art gallery highlighting the late Madam Leah’s personal influences.
Most of the places given above are open to the public aside from 10,000 Roses, Shangri-la, and Fort San Pedro. Meaning, that the rest of it asks for no entrance fee. The only thing you need is great time management to visit these places all at once.
Before I forget, if you’re new to town, consider hiring a habalbal as your personal service. It will save you time.
Aira is a content writer who believes in "everything happens for a reason," so she writes with a reason - to learn and educate. During her free time, she is either reading or watching Netflix. But what she enjoys most is her personal time vibing to her playlist with a coffee in her hand, looking at the view from her room.