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The Brave Lapu Lapu


Lapu Lapu

How brave and valiant Lapu Lapu was! He stopped Ferdinand Magellan in his tracks right here on Mactan Island, Cebu on April 27, 1521, effectively repelling European incursion into Philippine shores (at least until 1565 when Miguel Lopez de Legazpi arrived in Cebu and established a settlement). Magellan and his men were armed with guns and swords. Lapu Lapu's warriors had bamboo spears.

The Lapu Lapu monument is located at the Mactan Shrine in Punta Engaño, Mactan Island. A marker indicates the spot where Magellan was killed by Lapu Lapu and his men. One of Magellan's men, Juan Sebastian Elcano, escaped the battle and continued the journey back to Spain. He arrived at San Lucar de Barrameda on September 6, 1522 marking the first circumnavigation of the earth.

There are stalls both inside and outside Mactan Shrine selling danggit (tiny salted dried fish, great with breakfast), local delicacies like ampao (rice crispies), dried mangoes, bukayo (shredded coconut mixed with brown sugar and packaged inside a coconut husk), among others. You can also find beach accessories and handicrafts.

Sutokil is an area with restaurants and can be found behind the handicraft shops. Here you can choose your main entreé from an array of fresh seafood. The fish are particularly colorful.

The best way to get to Mactan Island from Cebu City is by taxi. Or if you're staying at a hotel in town, they can arrange a guided tour for you. Bring a hat or an umbrella to protect your face from the fierce sun.

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Image by Charie

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