Second Ambassador's Tour Kicks Off in Cebu

CEBU CITY, 3 May 2015 – For the second year, the Philippine Embassy in Kuala Lumpur, under the leadership of Ambassador J. Eduardo Malaya, hosts the Ambassador's Tour to the Philippines.

After successfully taking 112 participants on a tour of Manila and nearby provinces such as Quezon in 2013, the Ambassador will be bringing this year's tour group, composed of 121 individuals of different nationalities, to Cebu and Bohol.

Malaysian photographer Steven Goh says he is very excited to do the tour. "It is my first time to visit the Philippines. I have Filipino friends who tell me so many good things about it and I can't wait to see it for myself!”

The tour group arrived in Cebu on May 2 and was welcomed by Cebu Governor Hilario Davide III. He lauded the Ambassador’s efforts to bring more tourists to discover Central Visayas – particularly Cebu and Bohol.

Both islands that are part of the tour were devastated by a powerful earthquake in 2013 but both provinces have made serious efforts to rebuild what was damaged in the past two years. 

“I think it is important to showcase what has already been rebuilt in Cebu and Bohol to erase the images of devastation on the minds of the foreigners who may want to visit,” Ambassador Malaya said.

“So much has been rebuilt and there’s also quite a lot more to see when it comes to the natural attractions – I’m sure our visitors and tour participants will be happy to see the breath taking landscapes and crystal waters for themselves,” he added.

In 2014, international and domestic tourist arrivals in Central Visayas were already at 4.03 million despite the tragedy. Of this number, 1.6 million are from abroad, making up 39.86 percent of the total. This is 16 percent higher than the tourist arrivals in 2013.

“With the availability of direct flights between Kuala Lumpur and Cebu, and the increasing number of halal-certified restaurants in the Visayas region, we can look forward to more Malaysians and other foreign tourists discovering the many wonders of Cebu and nearby Bohol island,” Ambassador Malaya stated.

The tour group is set to visit key places in Cebu such as Magellan’s Cross, the Sugbo Museum, and the Gilutungan and Nalunsan Islands, to name a few. The tour participants will also get to see how the famous Cebu guitars are made at the Alegre Guitar Factory.

They will also be attending an art show featuring the works of Filipino, Malaysian, and Indonesian artists.

In Bohol, the group will be getting up close and personal with the world’s smallest primate, the tarsier. They will also get a chance to admire the Chocolate Hills and see the ruins of Baclayon Church before going on a river cruise along the beautiful Loboc River.

The tour runs from May 2 to 5, and was organized in partnership with the Department of Tourism.  END