Flying to Cebu was no problem,
and getting a taxi to take me to the Marco Polo hotel
was no problem either. Although a nice place, it is
guarded pretty well since the area around is not as nice:
But it does have a great view down toward the water, and of
The breakfast buffet is quite expansive. I ate well, and
had no problem with the juice or water.
Like any developing area, some of the wiring is surprisingly
Cebu has some significant historic sites which are worth
seeing. One is Magellan's
, which was planted by Ferdinand
when he arrived in Cebu in 1521. Things
didn't work out that well for him, as Magellan
a few weeks later when he was battling one
local tribe on behalf of Rajah
, whom Magellan had just converted to
Christianity. Anyway, the original cross he planted is
supposed to be within the modern wooden cross you can see
today, to help protect it from elements and souvenir hounds.
The cross is outside of the 16th century Minor
Basilica of Santo Nino
, which is shown below. The
Santo Nino, which is a religious relic left behind in Cebu by
the original Magellan expedition, is likely the oldest
Christian religious artifact in the Philippines.
Nearby is Fort San
, which has parts dating back to the 1700's.
You can get almost anything delivered in the Philippines.
Coming home, the Mabuhay lounge in Cebu doesn't have as much
to offer as the one in Manila:
After landing at the domestic terminal, I discovered why
Aquino International is considered one
of the worst airports
in the world. After getting
out of the domestic terminal, with 2 hours to go before my
flight to Japan, I found that the only way to get to the other
terminal was to get a taxi or other ground service, since it's
several miles between the two terminals, with no internal
connection. But because it was raining, there were no taxis to
be found. It took 45 minutes and some "charitable
donations" to get someone to drive me to the international
terminal, which is not nearly as pleasant looking as the
domestic terminal I showed earlier
I was successful and made my flight, but not without some
undue stress. At least I got a decent meal on my JAL
flight to Tokyo!
So, the Philippines. A nice visit, definitely worth
seeing. But plan for frustrations at MNL airport!