I went galivanting around Cebu some weeks ago. A cousin from Manila came by to visit and so I showed him around. One of our random treks led us to the Taoist Temple, high up in the rolling hills of the city.
We had bad luck with the taxi ride going there, the driver was a snotty, half-deaf blob of a guy who dropped us off at the wrong gate, so we had to huff and puff (me mostly) our way down to the right one.
The view inside made up for the heat and the aggravation, though. We were greeted by an imposing dragon, sunbathing on the hilside. The grounds were meticulously kept, shrubs and lawn clipped into shape at every turn.
From the ground you could see the rooftop edges of the Chinese temples curling prettily upwards to the sky, their reds and greens so vibrant. The temple posts are a dizzying scarlet, the paint job still fresh and shiny.
We climb the steps leading to the main temple, and upon reaching the landing, one is bombarded with more colors. Intricate murals, with drawings of lotus flowers, Chinese writing, symbols, and other exotica unfold across walls and ceilings. Smaller dragons face off across a nearby rooftop, bright green against the blue.
From up here you have a view of the city, with puff clouds dotting the horizon. I like hill location, with its verdant canopy on one side sheltering the temple, the open expanse falling away below, and the city that seemed to be slumbering at its feet.
Up next: Cavorting Buddhas, Incense Prayers