Legazpi, also spelled Legaspi, is a city of over 200,000, the provincial capital of Albay. With the nicknames of "Queen City of South Luzon" and "City of Fun and Adventure", it is a city full of adventure and history, and is the regional center of Bicol region.
The nearby town of Daraga, though an independent municipality since 1922, is historically tied with the city, and it hosts the picturesque ruins of Cagsawa Church, and the future airport as well.
Legazpi's history trace back to prehistoric times, with Neolithic discoveries dated back to 500-100 BCE. Spanish explorers who first arrived also speak of an ancient pre-Hispanic civilization in the area, practicing rice farming, producing gold jewelry, and trading silk.
Miguel López de Legazpi led the Spanish expedition that colonized the Philippines in the 1560s, after Magellan's expedition had "discovered" it in the 1520s. Legazpi himself did not visit this region, but one of his officers named the town after him. Before the Spaniards, it was the village of Sawangan, and the first Spanish structures were in a Roman Catholic mission, named Misión San Gregorio Magno de Sawangan. The mission was repeatedly ravaged by raids from pirates, mostly Muslims from Mindanao, during its first years, but the Spaniards kept rebuilding it; it officially became a town in 1616.
|Climate chart (explanation)|
The climate is tropical, with plenty of rainfall throughout the year. For most days, there would be sunshine, with the daytime high between 29–32 °C (84–90 °F), and rainfall coming in the afternoon, with overcast skies caused by moisture moving inland from the Pacific Ocean.
The rainiest months are from late October to January, while the hottest months are from April to early October. The peak season for tourism is practically from February to October, though the best time to visit is from February to March, when the temperatures are tolerable and there are few rainy days.
Legazpi is subdivided into 70 barangays, but for the visitor, the city proper has two districts, the Albay District, the downtown (poblacion) which is also an old town with a grand old cathedral, and the Port District, the waterfront area with busy malls and a picturesque waterfront boulevard. The present airport, Mayon Volcano, and Ligñon hill are north of the city proper.
- 1 Legazpi Airport (LGP IATA). PAL Express and Cebgo fly daily from Manila to Legazpi and vice versa. Cebu Pacific departs from NAIA Terminal 3 in Manila. Cebgo also flies from Cebu to Legaspi and vice versa.
A new airport, 2 Bicol International Airport (BIA). is under construction 15 km (9.3 mi) in the municipality of Daraga, southwest of the present airport. The new airport will have a runway long enough to support wide-body aircraft, and to accommodate international flights. As of September 2020, it remains under construction behind schedule due to previous delays and the COVID-19 pandemic.
Tricycles will take 10-15 minutes to get to downtown, and the driver will quote ₱50 for a single-person trip. Walk straight out of the airport, across the parking lot, and out of the gate where the cars are exiting. Taxis are also available in the airport.
To return to the airport, tricycles waiting at Peñaranda Park and F. Aquende Drive will charge ₱30.
- 3 Legazpi station.
As of 2019, there is no through train service between Manila and Legazpi. It may be restored in 2022 at the earliest.
Philippine National Railways (PNR) operate a once-daily train (numbered 500) between Naga and Legazpi. It leaves 5AM at Naga station and stops at cities and towns along the line, and takes over 2 hours.
By bus or vanEdit
- Legazpi Grand Central Terminal (Near SM City Legazpi and Ibalong Center).
Legazpi has a good central bus station, which also serves jeepneys and vans from nearby towns. Several food stalls serve local food for departing and arriving passengers, there are signs for bays serving buses headed for a certain destination, e.g. to Manila, to Naga, and there is also a handicrafts store and a Savemore supermarket.
Tickets are sold on booths, and you can also book in advance. Look for the name of the company the booth are selling tickets for.
The following bus companies have trips from Manila:
- Philtranco. Three daily buses leave Pasay every 6:30PM, 7PM, and 8PM. They also have buses going south as far as Davao and Cagayan de Oro via Tacloban and Butuan, which stop at Daraga.
- Amihan. Philtranco's sister bus line, with a similar schedule, but with departures from Cubao.
- Raymond Transportation. Has a daily trip from Cubao.
- RMB Express.
- Superlines. Three departures from Cubao every 6:30PM, 10:30PM, and 5:30AM.
There are also buses and vans from Tabaco City. The fare is from ₱25.
- Victory Village, Port District. Has boats to Rapu-Rapu, and is being developed as a cruise terminal to serve domestic and foreign cruises.
Jeepneys are frequent. The largest sign on the windshield will be the jeepney's final destination, so you must ask the driver if they serve your intended destination.
Tricycles are useful for short trips. You may share one with other passengers to the same destination. Hail one at the terminal or on the street.
Albay District (Poblacion)Edit
- Bicol Heritage Park (Inside Camp Simeon A. Ola). Has a statue of General Simeon Ola.
- General Jose Ignacio Paua Statue, Bañadero. Paua is the only pure-blood Chinese who supported the Katipunan during the Philippine Revolution.
- Japanese Tunnel, EM's Barrio South, Albay District. An L-shaped tunnel used as an arsenal by the Japanese Imperial Army during the World War II. It measures 40 m (130 ft) long and around 2.1 m (6.9 ft) deep below the ground.
- Legazpi City Museum. It showcases the heritage and culture of the city and of Albay
- Liberty Bell (at Peñaranda Park). A bronze bell installed in 1945 by the American liberation forces. It is enclosed within a dome-shaped concrete structure with the inscription, “Whenever oppression knocks at your door, feel free to ring this bell”.
- 1 Peñaranda Park, Albay District. Has a statue of Jose Maria Peñaranda, the first governor of Albay. Around the park is Legazpi City Hall, Albay Capitol and St. Gregory the Great Cathedral.
- 2 St. Gregory the Great Cathedral (Legazpi Cathedral, Albay Cathedral), Albay District. The episcopal seat of the Diocese of Legazpi, it was first built by Spanish missionaries as a wooden chapel in 1581. The present church, designed by then governor Don Jose Ma. de Peñaranda, was built in 1839 using volcanic rocks.
- Battle of Legazpi Pylon, Quezon Street (At the corner with Rizal Street). A 16-metre (52 ft) high monument built to commemorate the defeat of Filipino fighters by American forces in 1900. The pylon marks the site of a bloody battle during the Philippine-American War and World War II.
- Headless Monument, Post Office Compound, Lapu-Lapu. It is dedicated to the unknown heroes who died in the Japanese occupation of Legazpi City during World War II
- Ibalong Heroes Monument, Rizal Street (At the corner with Lapu-Lapu Street). Honors the mythical heroes of the Bicol epic Ibalong: Baltog, Handyong and Bantong.
- 3 Kapuntukan Hill (Sleeping Lion Hill). Provides a view of the Embarcadero, the Port District, Albay Gulf, and Mayon Volcano.
- Legazpi Boulevard. A picturesque seaside road along the city's southern coastline with wide promenades, bike lanes, monuments such as the statue of Miguel López de Legazpi, JCI Legazpi Tourism Marker and the Freemason Obelisk, restaurants, cafés, and pubs.
- The Obelisk, Legazpi Boulevard, Puro. A monument which is built as a joint project between the city government and Masonic Lodge No. 61.
- Our Lady of Guadalupe Shrine, Buraguis. It features life-sized depictions of Stations of the Cross and a huge statue of the Virgin of Guadalupe at the summit.
- 4 St. Raphael the Archangel Church, Peñaranda Street, Port District. The original church was built in 1834 under the auspices of Pedro Romero, but was destroyed during the liberation of Legazpi by Allied forces in 1945. A more modern church was rebuilt in its place. Notable features include an altar table made of a single block of hardened lava rock.
- Rizal Park, Peñaranda Street (In front of Saint Raphael Church). It has a fountain and a monument to José Rizal, the country's national hero, sculpted by National Artist Napoleon Abueva in 1966.
- Albay Gulf Landing Monument, Rawis. Built in 1995 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Landing of the Allied American Forces in Legazpi City.
- Albay Park and Wildlife, Diversion Road, Bogtong. A picnic grove and a zoological park combined.
- 5 Ligñon Hill. Pronounced lee-NGOHN, it is a 156 m (512 ft) peak with a nature park at its summit offering panoramic views of the city and Mayon Volcano, and adventure activities like ziplining.
- Padang Memorial Cross, Padang. A monument dedicated to the victims of Typhoon Durian ("Reming") in 2006, which destroyed parts of the city.
- Our Lady of Fatima Church, Imelda Roces Avenue. A modern church with a semi-circular nave built in 1999.
- Imelda Park (Kalayaan Park), Barriada Road, Gogon. Has pavilions, a playground, and a basketball court. Also at the park is Mag-Ilusyon, a metal sculpture by award-winning artist Eduardo Castrillo, commissioned in 1976.
- Our Lady of Perpetual Help Parish Church (Redemptorist Church). The mission house of the Redemptorist congregation.
- 6 Cagsawa Ruins. The picturesque ruins of an old parish church on what was the town of Cagsawa. The original church was built in 1587 until it was burned down by Dutch pirates in 1636. A new church was again built in 1724 until it was destroyed by the devastating 1814 eruption of Mayon.
- A. Bichara Silverscreens and Entertainment Center.
- Black sand beaches: The city's coastline has lot of them, along the Albay Gulf, and are ideal for skimboarding.
- Whale shark watching: Whale sharks, locally known as butanding, occasionally visit the waters off the city's coast.
- Diving: There are 16 coral reefs off the coast of Legazpi and around the Albay Gulf ideal for scuba diving.
- Karangahan Falls, Banquerohan. Has a deep catch basin ideal for swimming.
Malls & supermarketsEdit
- Ayala Malls Legazpi. 6AM-8PM. Has an LCC supermarket.
- Embarcadero de Legazpi. A marina-inspired waterfront lifestyle hub, commercial and entertainment center in the city's port area. It also hosts the first Duty Free Philippines store in Bicol.
- Pacific Mall. Has a Metro Gaisano supermarket and a cinema.
- Robinsons Supermarkets.. 8AM-8PM. Has one outlet in Legazpi.
- LCC Mall Legazpi. 8AM-8PM.
- SM City Legazpi, Brgy 37 (Bitano) Capantawan. 9AM-8PM. A 140,000-m² mall, which also hosts the central bus station.
- Albay Pili Nut = https://www.facebook.com/albaypilinutcandy/
LCC Mall nearby Lapu-Lapu Street has several vendors that sells some Filipino menu, just like fried bangus with rice, fried chicken with silog.
Find out in the cafes within Embarcadero and having dinner towards the sea.
- Blue Lights (BL), Victory Village Legazpi City. 24/7. Great ambiance and good crew!
- Magayon Hotel, Peñaranda Street, ☏ , (Cell phone). Fan single room with cable TV. Outside bathroom. From ₱400.
- Catalinas Lodging House, 96 Peñaranda Street., ☏ . Single fan rooms with shared bathrooms. Old but clean. From ₱250.
- Mayon Backpackers Hostel, 040 brgy 11 Maoyod (off rizal street), ☏ , . Fan dorm beds in a room with 4 beds per room. A/C dorm beds in a room with 6 beds. 250/350.
- Great Pacific Inn, Rizal Street (near the Sampaguita tourist inn,), ☏ . Check-out: Noon. Single fan rooms have their own bathroom. The single rooms have no windows and are very small. From ₱350.
- Anvil Bed & Breafast, 241 Oro Street (btwn Quezon Aveune & alonzo strret.), ☏ , . Fan double room. No window. From ₱490.
- Bicol Traveller Inn, Bariada Road Bitano (near Pacific mall.), ☏ . Single fan room outside bathroom. Rooms are very small, with no windows. From ₱350.
- J Y Tourist Inn, Rizal Street & Vinzons Street., ☏ . Fan rooms only. From ₱300.
- Rex Hotel, Peñaranda Street, ☏ . Single fan rooms. You must pay an additional ₱100 for cable TV. From ₱450.
- R M J Apartelle, Imperial Court. Rose Street (near Pacific mall), ☏ , (cell). A/C double room with bathroom and cable TV. From ₱700.
- Salvador Manor De Legazpi, 153 Washington Drive (near old Airport), ☏ . A/C double room with bathroom. From ₱600.
- Siville Inn, 667 Vibal Street, ☏ . Fan double rooms with bathroom. from ₱500.
- Hotel St. Ellis, Rizal Street, ☏ . It is a 3-km drive from the airport. It offers rooms completely furnished with a 32-inch LCD television set with satellite cable TV connection, high-speed internet access, NDD/IDD telephone, in-room safe, and an electronic door lock system. Amenities include Essences Spa, Salon Mye, a fitness center, and a kiddie activity room. From ₱3150.
- Tyche Boutique Hotel, Gov. Forbes St. corner Rizal St., Baybay (directly across the Philippine National Bank branch, it is only a few minutes from the Legazpi Domestic Airport), ☏ . All rooms are equipped with air-conditioning, widescreen high-definition LCD TV with cable channels, complimentary wireless internet access, bathroom amenities and hair dryer. 24-hour room service, concierge, massage service (by arrangement), laundry service, 24-hour security, business center with Internet access for email, secretarial services, and fax. From ₱2700.
- Alicia Hotel, 653 Capt. F. Aquende Drive, ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. A few minutes from the domestic airport. 32 rooms and suites individually equipped with modern amenities like cable TV, individually controlled air-conditioning, a telephone, and Internet access. From ₱1950.
- La Piazza Hotel, Tahao Road, Airport District, ☏ . A/C suites equipped with LCD TV with cable channels and unlimited Wi-Fi access. Function rooms, Wi-Fi access in public areas, massage services and airport transfer. From ₱1600.
- The Oriental Legazpi, Taysan Hill, Sto. Niño Village, ☏ . A/C suites equipped with TV with cable channels, executive work desk, IDD/NDD telephone and high-speed broadband Internet access. Airport transfer, wireless Internet access, infinity pool, spa, fitness room/gym, business center, car rental, and city transfer. From ₱6500.
- The Oriental Albay, Purok 1 Barangay 33, Peñaranda St., ☏ (to 2002), toll-free: , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Bicol Regional Training and Teaching Hospital. Rizal Street. Phone +63 52-4830636. (DOH Hospital).
- University of Santo Tomas - Legazpi Hospital. Washington Drive. Phone +0917 633 9396 (PhilHealth Acredited)
- Bureau Of Immigration Legazpi Office. Door 3 Blst Building Rizal Street.
- Gubat and Rizal Beach. There are several sleepy towns and nice beaches after Legazpi just like Sorsogon and Gubat. Take a jeepney to these directions. Normally they make a stop in Pilar Port on the way to Sorsogon and Gubat.
|Routes through Legazpi|
|Naga ← Ligao City ← Travesia Guinobatan ←||N S||→ END|
|Naga ← Ligao City ← Guinobatan ← Camalig ←||N S||→ Sorsogon City → Matnog → Ferry to Samar Island → Calbayog|
|Tiwi ← Tabaco ←||N S||→ END|