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Cebu is a province located in the region of Central Visayas, in the Philippines. It is composed of the main island (Cebu Island) and 167 surrounding islands. The capital of the province is Cebu City; the name of the province, island, and the city is derived from the old Cebuano word “Sibu,” which means “trade” because the region’s story stems from being an important trading center in the 16th century.
Cebu is the most thriving region within the Philippines. Tourism in the province is booming thanks to its postcard-picture islands, white sand beaches, ultra-modern shopping malls, colonial buildings, and nightlife scenes. It is one of the top destinations in the Philippines that is frequented by tourists and expats from all around the globe.
Property types in Cebu range from freestanding houses, townhouses, condos, to apartments. Houses, specifically bungalows, are the most common sought-after type in the province. Bungalows are single-story houses and they are perfect for starting families. If you decide to add a story, bungalows in Cebu can usually be built with provisions for a second floor.
Townhouses are also very popular in Cebu. Other types of houses are also available, such as multilevel houses, single-attached, single-detached, duplex, and triplex.
In recent years, condo and apartments have become more and more popular in the province. Condo and apartment units are located within mid-rise or high-rise residential buildings. They usually offer a selection of amenities, such as shared swimming pools, gyms, and 24-hour security systems.
The largest city in Cebu Province is Cebu City. Often called the Queen City of the South, Cebu City is the oldest and fifth-most populous city in the Philippines. Being the oldest city in the country, Cebu has a lot of historical attractions, including Fort San Pedro, Casa Gorordo Museum, Krus ni Magellan, and Basilica Minore del Santo Niño de Cebu.
Another popular part of Cebu is Moalboal, which is famous for its white-sand beaches, perfectly clear blue water, Sardines Run in the shores of Panagsama Beach, and a healthy coral ecosystem. Many people also come to this area to get a chance to swim with whale sharks.
Besides Cebu City and Moalboal, international visitors usually come to the province to explore the islands of Mactan, Badian, Bantayan, Camotes, and Malapascua. These islands offer high-end hotels and resorts that offer all kinds of luxury.
The cost of living in Cebu is relatively affordable and reasonable, but not by any means cheap. Most foreigners are able to live a comfortable life with a mid-range salary. The official currency is the Philippines Peso, and US$1 converts to around ₱49.1.
Living in Cebu means living in a tropical climate, with warm weather all year-round. There are generally two seasons in the province: rainy and dry season. The rainy season runs from November to June and the dry season starts from December to May.
Most expats living in Cebu obtain Long Stay Visitor Visa, which is valid for a maximum of 16 months, but has to be reapplied for up to 6 months at a time.