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2010 • 8 • 10

After our two-day tour in Iloilo and Guimaras, the Poor Traveler and his poor friend decided that it was time to head home. But the flight tickets that we got would have a connecting flight in Cebu City. Our plane would land at Mactan International Airport at 4pm and would depart for Manila at 6am the next morning.

But we were not pissed. We saw it as an opportunity to explore the Queen City of the South. We just had to be back at Mactan Airport at around 4am. So we had 12 hours to go see places and meet people in Cebu.

Magellan's Cross in Cebu
Magellan’s Cross in Cebu

Twelve hours. Sounds fun. Except, we were running short of cash. So we did everything to make sure we would not spend too much.

Baggage Deposit at the Airport

The first challenge the Poor Traveler and his poor friend encountered was our bags. We had two big bags. We could not afford a hotel and it would be such a spoiler to bring our giant bags along with us. We started this trip with only a few items with us but we bought a whollotta things in Iloilo and Guimaras.

So we couldn’t afford a hotel and our bags were too heavy. We were screwed. Until it dawned on us that perhaps, there was a sort of baggage deposit center somewhere in the airport area.

We asked the concierge and we were led to a deposit counter. The fee was P200 per bad. We had 2 bags so that’s P400. Problem solved.

Magellan’s Cross

After we got rid of our bags, we went outside and found a cab. There were airport-cabs but we didn’t choose to pick one of those, we assumed it would be much pricier. After hailing a regular cab, the driver asked us where to go. We couldn’t answer because we really had no plans. Until one thing popped in my head, “Magellan’s Cross.”

I think the only thing I knew about Cebu was Magellan’s Cross. It was on my Grade 1 textbook. We paid around P175 to the cab driver and explored the area. We took pictures, bought candles and proceeded to the church.

The Church, The Resto, The Cakes

Sto. Nino Church
Sto. Nino Church

We were only able to explore the front of the church and lit some candles. We did not go inside because there were too many people — it was Sunday — and we were just extremely hungry. I texted a friend who was also a travel blogger and asked where to gorge on some good Cebuano delicacies. He replied but looking back now, I just couldn’t remember the name of the place. But it was great. The food were awesome and the waiters, too. Haha.

After dinner we walked to the IT park, which was, to me, very reminiscent of Bonifacio High Street. Dunno why. We then stumbled upon this cafe called La Marea. At first we didn’t wanna buy anything but the cakes were too delicious-looking to resist. We gave in. Haha.

We spent a couple of hours there and then we headed back to the airport after.

Sleeping at the Airport

We returned to the airport at past midnight. We decided to just sleep at the airport since we still had four full hours before our check in. It was a different experience. I can’t say it’s comfortable but I would gladly do it again if I ran short on cash again.

Over all, our 12 hours in Cebu City was rewarding. I wish we had more time (and money) since we only explored like a tiny part of the city. Another problem was that we really had no sleep (in Iloilo) the night before so we were both exhausted. But still, it was unexpected and really worth it.

This is part of our ILOILO-GUIMARAS-CEBU trip. For more posts about the other places we have visited, check out our collection here.

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Yosh Dimen
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> welcome to cebu:)


And that was only a half, imagine going there for an entire day! Great blog.;)


here’s a cheap suggestion:
from mactan airport, take the yellow cab. drop at pusok intersection. fare P7. from pusok intersection, ride the PUJ, take the one with SM sign. This will drop you at SM Cebu. Fare P12. From front of SM take the PUJ passing the Boulevard (forgot the name but sounds like larena or something), this can bring you to 1) downtown proper and 2) Sugbutel. Fare P7-20. You can stay at Sugbutel, there are cheap beds there at P250/night (last time i know). For food, there is always the cheap BBQ place in almost every corner of Cebu. I think for 250 you have the bed to sleep. and for P80-100/person this will transport you around Cebu City using the PUJ.


Hi.. Wer planning to go to cebu-bohol by end of may. Since we only have 3 days wer planning to stay at cebu for a day only.can i have your suggestions/directions on how to visit most historic places there within5-6hrs without having to hire a tour guide. (magellans cross, taoist temple etc) super thanks


The yellow cab (airport taxi) they come out more expensive than the “regular” taxi.

Cebu is also know for its beaches and it’s not very far from the airport maybe you can drop by the different resorts next time on your half day adventures.. :D

katerina petrova

you haven’t try visiting lapu-lapu shrine?


HI PT, may I know if there is a baggage deposit center in NAIA terminals? Thank you.

The Poor Traveler

I’m not aware of any. :(