Metro Cebu

Metro Cebu is in Cebu Province in the Philippines. It is the country’s second largest urban area, after Metro Manila, and the main urban center both of the province and of the larger Visayas region which forms the central third of the country. Metro Cebu has more than 60% of the total population of the province. Latest population figures are about 2.8 million (census, 1 August 2015) .

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. . . Metro Cebu . . .

Cebu City bottom center
Mactan and Olango Islands to the right

Three main cities make up the core of Metro Cebu; each has its own goverment and its own Wikvoyage article:

  • 10.31123.891 Cebu City the main city, on Cebu Island; has the port, provincial government, hotels, extensive shopping, lively nightlife, and much else. (population in 2015 census 923,000)
  • 10.33123.931 Mandaue a residential and industrial town located on Cebu Island between Cebu City and Lapu-Lapu. (363,000)
  • 10.29123.971 Lapu-Lapu on Mactan Island east of Cebu City; has the airport, some nice beaches and dive sites, and many high-end resorts. (408,000)

For practical purposes, the three are in effect a single city; taxis, jeepneys and buses are available so travel between them is easy. There are two large bridges between Mandaue and Lapu-Lapu, and many roads between Manadue and Cebu city. A third bridge, running direct from Cebu City to Córdova (the southern part of Mactan), is under construction, planned to be in service by 2021. Unlike the two existing bridges the new one will be several km long and will have a toll.

Cebu City has most of the region’s historical sights and a range of facilities for travellers: accommodation, food and entertainment. It is therefore the main tourist destination in the region. However many travellers will also visit other areas: Lapu-Lapu for the airport, and anywhere except Cebu City for beach resorts.

The administrative region of Metro Cebu is shown in red on the map below, with the rest of Cebu Province in white. The region extends well beyond the three core cities and includes various suburbs or towns for which Wikivoyage has separate articles. In each list below, the towns are ordered from Cebu City outwards:

Metro Cebu in red
The rest of Cebu Province in white

South of Cebu City, on Cebu Island:

  • 10.25123.8451 Talisay a residential and trading center directly bordering Cebu City on the south. Talisay has the fourth largest population of any municipality in the region, after the cities listed above. Arguably it (or a Talisay/Minglanilla combination) should be considered a fourth core city.
  • 10.25123.781 Minglanilla largely a bedroom suburb just south of Talisay, known for its Sugat festival
  • 10.22123.751 Naga has the largest factory in the country, making cement, and also a number of seaside resorts
  • 10.17123.71 San Fernando more of a country area than a city region, though there is a town; has resorts both in a mountain area and along the coast
  • 10.1123.631 Carcar Old colonial town on the coast with a few interesting historic buildings.

North of Cebu City, on Cebu Island:

  • Mandaue, directly bordering Cebu City and with bridges to Lapu-Lapu
  • 10.37123.961 Consolacion mainly residential suburb north of Mandaue
  • 10.4123.981 Lilo-an coastal suburb, home of the Rosquillos, a type of cookie.
  • 10.46124.011 Compostela municipality with a few coastal resorts and attractions inland in the hills
  • 10.52124.031 Danao City 40 km from the city. Has ferries to the Camotes Islands

East of Cebu City, on other islands:

  • Lapu-Lapu, connected to Mandaue by bridges
  • 10.25123.951 Córdova on Mactan Island, south of Lapu-Lapu
  • 10.27124.051 Olango Island Easternmost part of the metro area, a short ferry ride from Lapu-Lapu, but fairly rural. Has mangrove swamps, a wildlife sanctuary popular with bird watchers, a large reef area with good diving, and some mid-range resorts.

All municipalities have some sea coast and all except Cebu City itself have some beach resorts. Many of the townships also extend up into the island’s somewhat mountainous interior, but most of the population is along the coast.

. . . Metro Cebu . . .

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. . . Metro Cebu . . .

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