Globe Wonderful Cebu Trip to Temples and Terraces
Our recent trip to Cebu with Globe (READ: Global Filipino School program in Cebu) brought us to many interesting tourist spots in Cebu that I have not frequented every time I am in this city.
The Globe team took us to the upland portion of Cebu City and to their event that made this Wonderful Cebu adventure more of an escapade in temples and terraces. So, if you want to get out of the busier sections of Cebu City and you are wondering where else to go in Cebu, or what to see in upland Cebu, or what other places you can visit, there are destinations within the city where you can be close to the heavens.
We visited two temples in upland Cebu City. One is a real temple, where worshipers go, and the other is a temple of love.
Cebu Taoist Temple
Canyon Road, Beverly Hills Subdivision, Lahug
Cebu City, Philippines
Phone: +63 948-574-2549
The Cebu Taoist Temple has been around for a long time, since it was built in 1972. I visited this place when I was a kid. It was part of our educational trip when I was in high school. But since then, I have never retraced my path back to the Cebu Taoist Temple. Most of my trips to Cebu were business related and confined me in the hotel, in the mall, or the event venue. I even had a number of trips where I arrived in Cebu in the morning and leave in the afternoon.
Boy I was glad that this trip gave me the opportunity to revisit the Cebu Taoist Temple and look at it with new eyes. While the temple is open to visitors and non-worshipers, they are very strict in maintaining the sanctity of the place, which was quite a challenge. There were even men who guarded restricted areas, like the prayer rooms where photography and noise are not allowed.
Perched atop a hill in a posh village, the temple is a good vantage point where one can view the lowland part of the city. Parking is at the lower ground but there’s an entrance at the third (or fourth?) level of the property. This entrance for people reminded me of the Great Wall of China because of its design. The temple does not charge any entrance fee to visitors and is usually open from 9:00am to 5:00pm.
Temple of Leah
Roosevelt St., Busay, Cebu City, Cebu
Phone: +63 933-113-1755 or +63 32 233-5032
We made further ascent as we drove through zigzag roads towards Busay, Cebu City. We arrived at Temple of Leah, an attraction I haven’t heard before. There were still portions of the property that is under construction and being developed but it is already open to visitors who like to see the place.
Temple of Leah is a Roman and Greek-inspired structure, with its elaborate columns, giant lion statues guarding both sides of the steps, a huge square surrounded by female statues, and a fountain in the middle that can make you wonder if you are truly in Cebu. The piazza gives a beautiful and wide view of Metro Cebu because of it elevation.
Entering the so-called temple, a human-size bronze statue of Leah seated on what seems to be a throne captures everyone’s attention. It turns out that she was Leah Villa Albino-Adarna and her husband Teodorico Adarna built this whole structure as a symbol of his undying love and also to serve as a museum that will house the collections and items that Leah owned while she was alive. Most of these were things she acquired from her travels. Leah and Teodorico are also grandparents of Filipino actress and celebrity Ellen Adarna.
The attraction is open from 6:00am to 11:00pm. It charges Php50 per head for the entrance fee, although senior citizens and children 10 years old and below can enter for free. They are also open for special pictorials but for a fee. There is limited parking, which is by the narrow road outside the premises, and quite challenging.
This trip made me enjoy two terraces. One is carved at the side of a mountain and the other is in a shopping complex where we got to enjoy the Globe At Home #StreamFest.
Terrazas de Flores
Budlaa-Busay Road, Malubog Cebu City, Cebu
Phone: +63 917-653-4227
Flowers of various kinds and colors greeted us as our van entered a narrow, winding sloped road to the small parking area. Terraces of gardens filled the slope of the mountain. As we took photos of and with the flowers, I wandered around the botanical garden and I came into the coffee shop where I met the owner, Yuri Barrameda.
According to Mr. Barrameda, Terrazas de Flores opened only early in 2017 but it took eight years for them to develop the garden. He showed me why. Each terrace were built of rocks carefully carved like jigsaw puzzle pieces put together. They patterned this after the rice terraces in Banaue.
The garden was built from his hobby and love of flowers and plants. Cascading water flows at one portion right near the coffee shop. They source their coffee from the Bacolod-based Coffee Culture Roastery. Apart from coffee drinks, the café also serves meals (like all-day breakfast), snacks, soups and desserts. You can choose to dine indoors or al fresco, surrounded by the beauty of flora and fauna. There are also private cabanas, which groups can reserve for dinner.
Terrazas de Flores is open from 7:00am to 8:00pm. Entrance fee is Php100 per head. And there’s more to expect for Terrazas de Flores. Barrameda plans to put up an art gallery to support local artists. He will also have local musicians play here. They also plan to expand the garden, plant more species, and build more amenities.
Ayala Center Cebu, Cebu Business Park
Archbishop Reyes Avenue, Cebu City
The last activity we had in this Cebu adventure gave us the opportunity to watch movies outdoors, in the Ayala Terraces, to be specific. Surrounded by shops and greens, right at the middle of an oasis is where we spent our afternoon on our second day in Cebu. Munching popcorns and seated on bean bags, invited guests enjoyed an afternoon and evening of movie binging as Globe put up a giant tent for its event, #StreamFest. Through Globe At Home’s GoBIG plans, watching movies can be done however you want it because you can now stream movies and your favorite TV shows.
For as low as Plan 1299, customers can enjoy 300 GB of data allocation per month with speeds of up to 5Mbps. Apart from access to YouTube, customers can enjoy free 6 months access to Netflix and Disney Channel apps for award-winning original content and children’s shows, and a two-month subscription to HOOQ for a diverse selection of local and foreign titles.
Fun games in various booths, such as the one of YouTube, were also available at the Globe At Home event venue at Ayala Terraces. We played a game using the voice-activated Android TV box as well as some flip-top bottle challenge. Then Globe Telecom Head of Broadband Marketing Barbie Dapul presented the various features and services under Globe At Home.
In line with its vision of providing connectivity to 2 million homes in 2020, Globe At Home has started its aggressive rollout of facilities in major locations around the country. The province of Cebu is one of its key locations and Globe is working hand-in-hand with the Cebu City and Mandaue City governments for its various builds.
Globe is strengthening its partnership with the local government units, recognizing that local officials’ support is essential in realizing its goal of enhancing connectivity to boost economic development in the country.
To improve its mobile services in Cebu, Globe continues to ramp up deployment of LTE sites using the 700 MHz, 1800 MHz and 2600 MHz bands. Since the company gained access to new spectrum assets in the middle of last year, close to 600 LTE sites have already been activated in Cebu alone.
LGU collaborations also pave the way for broadband connectivity to reach more homes, which is realized in Globe At Home’s Cebu launch of its new GoBIG plans that have bigger data allocations at affordable rates and fast, reliable speeds. These new plans come with free 100 GB of data to access and enjoy YouTube.
And the best part of this trip is that I also won an Android TV box from Globe. It’s a great tool for a person like me who is often on the road. Now, I don’t have to worry about missing the movies or the TV show I’m following. It’s like enjoying the best of both worlds – the road and the couch – and it’s another reason for me to look forward to coming home after every trip.
This article is part of my #WonderfulCebu #Globe blog series.