Taking long vacations often require planning months in advance and the Holy Week is no exemption. If there’s a vacant spot in your itinerary or you’ve just decided to spend the holiday travelling, here is a list of places you might want to see.
If you want to spend the Holy Week observing religious traditions, such as Visita Iglesia, check out our list of breathtaking churches to visit.
Located on the top of a hill is a sprawling castle-like monastery that draws thousands of devotees from around the country. The Simala-Lindogon Church is believed to have been blessed by the Virgin Mary, turning the dry and barren land into the lush vista you see today. People will flock to this church during Holy Week so be prepared for the huge crowds.
Basilica Minore del Santo Niño de Cebu
A visit to Cebu would not be complete without dropping by the church that houses the oldest relic of the Holy Child Jesus. The Basilica is located in downtown Cebu and is within walking distance of many heritage sites. Due to its convenient location, it is one of the most visited churches in the city. A staggering number of devotees often gather during the weekends, so plan your visits accordingly if you want to avoid the crowds.
Pilgrim’s Center, Osmeña Boulevard, Cebu City
Feeling restless? Work off your excess energy by visiting our recommended adventure spots.
Bask in the sunrise at Osmeña Peak, one of the highest points in Cebu. Its peak is approximately 1000 meters above sea level and is part of the Mantalongon mountain range. The view from the top allows you to see as far as the shoreline of its neighboring municipality. Although the trail is perfect for beginners, tour guides are also available down at the registration office. Don’t forget to bring your hiking shoes!
Bacalla Woods Campsite
Nestled on top of the hills, Bacalla Woods Campsite is a welcome respite for those seeking to escape the city without straying too far from it. Known for its infinity swing, it is a place built for adventure lovers—from river trekking to stargazing. It is a very rustic abode, with no cell reception or WiFi, so don’t expect a full service staff. Remember to book ahead of time.
San Isidro, San Fernando
The last few months probably have you feeling drained. Spend the Holy Week at any of these places to regain your energy.
Olango Island Wildlife Sanctuary
Bird watchers and nature lovers will truly enjoy this 920-hectare protected area for waterfowl. Olango Island Wildlife Sanctuary is home to over 97 species of birds, half of which are migratory species coming from in Siberia, Northern China, and Japan to escape the winter monthsWe recommend that you bring your binoculars and drop by the sanctuary around 1pm to catch a closer look at the winged residents.
San Vicente, Olango, Lapu-Lapu City
If you enjoy visiting white sand beaches but yearn to relax away from the crowds, you will enjoy Sandira Beach. Formerly known as Paradise Beach, it is a relaxing side trip should you happen to visit Bantayan Island. Just remember that there are no establishments on Sandira Beach so it is relatively secluded. However, its pristine waters and lush greenery make the trip worthwhile. Make sure to secure your accommodations at a nearby hotel or resort if you plan to stay long.
Pescador Island is located in the Tañon Strait and is the perfect site for diving enthusiasts. Visitors can also choose to explore the island to see the lighthouse or jump from one of the island’s high cliffs. If cliff jumping or trekking is not for you, you can also dive in its clear waters. Visibility often reaches up to 40 meters which makes it easy to spot the diverse marine life. Just be careful of the jellyfish that visit the area.
Tañon Strait, Moalboal
Cheers to a long weekend!