December 27, 2019
Did you know that filipinos celebrate Christmas for 4 whole months?
Every year filipinos marked September 1 as the beginning of the countdown for Christmas. They called this celebration or countdown the “BER” months. It’s related to the ending of the words describing months such September, October, November and December. The countdown is so long that it takes almost an entire half of year. Christmas culture in the Philippines is a mixed of Western and native Philippines culture.
If you have a chance to celebrate Christmas in the Philippines, particularly in Cebu, here is the short guide of what you can visit during Christmas Eve
Fuente Osmeña Circle is a famous landmark located in the center of Cebu. Every year in this rotunda park with a fascinating fountain, the big Christmas tree is situated. It is the tallest tree in the city and has attracted residents and tourists to the Queen City of the South. It is an amazing place to visit and take photos. There are different kinds of activities at night beside the iconic tree to keep the people entertained.The Christmas tree impresses with its bright decorations such as stars, poinsettia flowers, products from palm fibers buri fans, wooden deer. Also under the tree is an image of Santo Nino – the image of the baby Jesus in the city of Cebu.
Near Fuente Osmeña Circle there is one place with the greatest view of the city – the top floor of the Crown Regency Hotel and Towers Cebu. This 38-story hotel tower offers you not only a breathtaking view of the city but also a variety of extreme activities. For example, you can level up your adrenaline by trying SkyWalk Extreme, where you will walk across a glass floor on the edge of the 127-meter high tower. Also, take a ride on the Edge Coaster and enjoy thrilling view of Cebu as you get tilted 55 degrees down.
The entrance is free only to 19th floor. And to go to the next levels you need to pay 250 pesos. In our case, we have just admired wonderful sunset from the 38th floor. It brings an amazing feeling of being observer and see the power of the city from that high.
This is the original Bibingka baker of Mandaue City, Cebu. You can take away some traditional philippines desserts such as budbud, otap, massareal, ampao, tagaktak, hopia.
Bibingka is the most common Filipino sweet dish during Christmas time. Many vendors are selling a delicious rice cake with coconut cream placed in banana leaves especially during the mass “Simbag Gabi” and “Midnight Mass”. Traditionally, bibingka is steamed or baked in the oven and can be served with sugar cane and shredded coconut.
At Christmas time Ayala centers pleases visitors with the Fantastic Symphony of Lights. It gets the customer’s attention by extremely impressive glare of lights. The display is followed by your favorite songs. This is a wonderful attraction to see while having a dinner at several restaurants on the terraces of Ayala Center. It’s also nice to pass through night street market and buy some souvenirs or even participate in Christmas lottery.
Christmas somehow mostly associated with snow and cold weather, right? Why not go to experience original atmosphere of holiday by skating in the biggest SM Mall? Skating is definitely more fun when you share the rink with your loved ones. Regardless of your age, you definitely will enjoy this activity.
Unlimited Skating: ₱420 per pax for whole day including ice skating boots rental
Polar Bear Assistance: ₱100 per hr
Coach Assistance: ₱150 per 30 mins
Companion Pass: ₱100 per pax
Locker: ₱50 per pax
Basic Figure Skating Lessons: ₱3,600 per pax
Socks: ₱50 per pair
One of the famous traditions of Christmas in the Philippines is the Misa de Gallo or Simbang Gabi. It is a series of nine dawn masses on the days leading up to Christmas. It begins on December 16 and ends at midnight on the 24th of December, when a midnight mass is held.
This tradition originated in the early Spanish colonial period that gives the farmers opportunity to join mass before going to the fields early in the morning. The masses can start at 4am in the morning.
It’s a good idea to see the festive decoration of the churches. For example, you can visit Santo Niño Church de Cebu, which is located in famous cultural point San Pedro Port.
It’s not only the important historical place but also spot where families or friends meet to enjoy the atmosphere of holidays. Its peaceful walled garden is a perfect retreat from the chaos and madness of downtown Cebu, especially at sunset. Fort San Pedro is located inside Plaza Independencia, with two sides facing the sea and the third side fronting the land.
Colon street also known as the shortest and oldest national roads in the Philippines.
It is named after Cristobal Colon also known as Christopher Columbus. During the Christmas season, this place acquires a certain festive mood. Strolling across this market you can easily put your eye on some clothes, souvenirs, gifts. What is more important the the prices here are really affordable. You can also feel the local spirit and have conversation with cebuano people.
Ready for a gastronomic adventure?
If you are hungry and ready to try something new Sugbo Mercado in the IT Park is the perfect place for you. You can quench your curiosity and fill your stomach by choosing dishes to your taste: from lechon, baked scallops, pad tai to fried tuna or chicken and ramen. All you need it just choose table, listen to good music and watch how people enjoy food and drink or scurry around.
Indeed, Cebu is one of the glorious places to celebrate the Christmas season. You can be sure to have a lot of joy and fun, as the city symbolizes the traditional ambiance of Christmas and endless bliss. This is how magnificent the city of Cebu is.
Join us! Merry Christmas!
Hi everyone, this is Anastasiia. You can call me Anna. I am the current Russian intern of 3D Academy. Please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. See you in 3D :)