With a vast seaport, an international airport, two giant shopping malls, a modern business park and several universities, Cebu City has achieved metropolis status without coming to resemble the ninth circle of hell.
But before we get your hopes up, bear in mind that its virtues are comparative.
Cebu is the “Queen City of the South” on Cebu Island in the Philippines and is one of the most popular destinations in all of the Philippines for foreign visitors with the busiest sea port in the Philippines and the second largest Air hub.
For over 200 years, the second largest and most important city in the country, it is currently the fastest growing large city in the nation with an annual growth of over 5% per year.
Perhaps surprisingly for such a booming metropolitan area, it has white sand beaches (some with ice cream vendors and showers and some untouched), as well as historical sites that reflect its cosmopolitan past. Cebu was in at the birth of Christian proseletising in Asia when it became one of the early commercial hubs between Mexico and China.
The language spoken in Cebu City is Cebuano, which is also known as Bisaya, with about 20 million native speakers.