Southwalk: Capturing The Relics and Stories of the Past
The southern part of Cebu has always been an interesting place. Not only it boast with breathtaking beaches and jaw-dropping waterfalls, but its the home to many heritage spots such as old churches and ancestral homes. As a history lover, visiting the heritage churches and colonial houses of Southern Cebu is an opportunity to bask into the history, origin and the cultural heritage that the people are upholding up to this day.
Way back 2014, we decided to go on a road trip down south hopping from one town to the next to take as much photos of the old heritage churches. Though most of these towns are visited every now and then by tourists and locals, visiting them in a single day is a whole new experience and adventure and that’s what SouthWalk is all about.
City of Naga Baywalk
This is our first stop of the trip. The baywalk of the City of Naga is a good spot to welcome the day. The weather was gloomy so we were not lucky enough to get a glimpse of the sunrise.
Good thing it didn’t rain so we still manage to take a couple of good and decent shots (including our group shot above). And by the way, these photos are taken with my #Zenfone Zoom.
The city of Carcar is known as the Heritage City of Cebu. Carcar is among the few places in Cebu where you can see a lot of old ancestral homes preserved and stood the test of time. It is known as “Sialao” since before the Spanish colonization and considered one of the oldest towns in Cebu, with its Spanish influence that lasted for more than 300 years. A Spanish priest rename the place Carcar, after a town in Northern Spain.
Old Houses in Santa Catalina Street
The stretch of this road is filled with well-preserved colonial houses. Though there are abandoned ones but most of the ancestral houses are well preserved and the owners have caretakers that continuously look after them. The most notable one is the Sarmiento-Osmeña House or the Balay na Tisa (see below) which is considered as one oldest stone residential structure in Carcar.
Other colonial houses like the Sato House, Silva House, Mercado House, Yap House, Marfori-Cui House, Juario-Villarosa House, Mateo Noel House, Congressman Noel House, Aleonar House and the Ang Dakong Balay are still present in the area.
Sibonga is a 3rd class municipality in the province of Cebu. Aside from the Simala-Lindogon church, the Nuestra Señora del Pilar, the Town Hall and the Sibonga Plaza is among the go to spots in the area.
Argao is a beautiful town which offers a lot of heritage sites and natural attractions. Argao got its name from a mangrove tree, named Sali-Argaw, which are abundant in its coastal areas. The San Miguel Archangel Church is the prominent and notable structure in Argao. In the town’s plaza, we will also get to see the old Town Hall as well as other heritage structures.
Aside from being the Summer Capital of Cebu and Vegetable Basket of Cebu, the town of Dalaguete boasts with historical and heritage spots such as the San Guillermo de Aquitana Church, the Muralla, the Osarium, the Kiosko, Cristo Rey Monument and many more.
The town got its name from Dalakit Tree which natives believes that it harbors spirits who could impose sickness or give out fortunes. You can head to Obong Spring if you want to see a living Dalakit tree.
The town of Boljoon is the quaintest, picturesque one and one of the oldest towns in southern Cebu It is also called as Cebu Heritage Frontier.
The Boljoon Church, the Nuestra Señora Patrocino de Mari is the oldest remaining original stone church in Cebu that is relatively well preserved. The Kampanaryo, Escuela Catolica, Boljoon Parish Museum is among the towns go to heritage spots. Just across the church is the Plaza Bermejo where you can see Ili Rock from afar.
In 1999, the National Historical Institute declared Boljoon’s church a National Historical Landmark and the following year, the National Museum declared it as a National Cultural Treasure
Oslob is a town that is close or by the sea. The town has one of the most beautiful shores in the south. The Toslob Festival is the official town’s festival which coincides with the feast of the Immaculate Concepcion in December.
The Our Lady of Immaculate Concepcion, Shrine of Fr Julian Bermejo, the Baluarte and the Cuartel are among the notable structures in the town of Oslob. The town plaza is also the best place to catch a glimpse of the setting sun.
Other interesting spots to visit in Oslob is the Tumalog Falls and Sumilon Island which is home to Bluewaters Sumilon Island Resort.
Over a hundred mile journey, 7 stops to 7 interesting towns. A day of adventure, friendship and learning. That’s the SouthWalk!
See you all next year!
Here’s the SouthWalk wrap up video courtesy of GuideCebu’s Elroy Robin. Check it out.