Mactan Shrine: Magellan and Lapu-Lapu in Battle of Mactan


Mactan Shrine in Punta Engaño, Mactan Island, Cebu, Philippines is where the battle for supremacy and freedom took place between Ferdinand Magellan and Lapu-Lapu. Because of the success in Christianizing some native, Ferdinand Magellan a Portuguese explorer crossed the channel to Mactan Island in the hope to spread Christianity in the area. But even before reaching the shore, Magellan along with his 49 Christian soldiers were defeated by the chieftain of Mactan, Lapu-Lapu, along with his approximately 1,500 warriors armed with barong, spears, kampilan and kalasag on April 27,1521. Magellan and several other men were killed. This was later recognized as the historic Battle of Mactan.

The other soldiers were held prisoner. On May 1, 1521, one of Magellen’s ships, The Victoria, under the command of Juan Sebastian Elcano sailed from Cebu and anchored at San Lucar de Barrameda, Spain on September 6, 1522, thus completing the first circumnavigation of the earth.

Magellan’s body was never recovered and on 1866, a marker was raised on the spot where the great explorer died. The Magellan Marker or Magellan Shrine is located inside Mactan Shrine. It is a big memorial tower approximately 30 meters high, put up to commemorate the great Portuguese explorer, Ferdinand Magellan. The spot is purportedly where Magellan was killed.

Back of Lapu-lapu Monument

Back of Lapu-lapu Monument

Magellan Shrine

Magellan Shrine

Mural Painting depicting the Battle of Mactan

Mural Painting depicting the Battle of Mactan

Across the Magellan Marker is a covered area where a mural painting showing the Battle of Mactan is hanging on the wall. A commemorative marker can be found which gives people an insight that the spot is where Lapu-Lapu and his men repulsed the Spanish invaders killing Magellan during the Battle and thus making Lapu-Lapu the first Filipino to have repelled European aggression.

The Short Lapu-lapu Statue

The Short Lapu-lapu Statue

The Lapu-Lapu Monument can also be found inside Mactan Shrine. It is a 20-meter bronze statue of Lapu-Lapu holding a shield in one hand and “kampilan” sword on the other hand. The statue is on top of a base surrounded by low-level fence. It was built in honor of the brave Datu Lapu-Lapu who was a native chieftain of the island. In some written historical articles, Lapu-Lapu was Muslim and a Tausug and was also known as “Kaliph Pulaka”, “Cali Pulacu”, “Kalipulako” and “King Kalipulako de Maktan”.

Mactan Shrine hosts “Kadaugan sa Mactan”, a re-enactment of the heroic Battle of Mactan every year during the battle’s anniversary.

Lapu-lapu Monument in Mactan Shrine

Lapu-lapu Monument in Mactan Shrine

Distinctly, Mactan Shrine reminds bravery among Filipinos and clearly depicts the history of the Philippines specifically in the island of Mactan. Today, foreign and local tourists visit the place to have a glimpse of the so-called “history”. To some, Mactan Shrine has turned out to be a leisure park. The grounds are well kept and the place is well preserved. People would usually visit the place in the afternoon in which they can have a beautiful view of the sunset.

Mactan Shrine Souvenir Shops

Some souvenir shops are found inside Mactan Shrine and some are located outside near the parking lot. These shops sell printed t-shirts, handmade bracelets, guitars, accessories made purely from shells and a whole lot more. You could also have great seafood meals in one of the fish restaurants nearby.

Souvenir Items at Mactan Shrine

Souvenir Items at Mactan Shrine

How to get to Mactan Shrine

Mactan Shrine is located in the north-eastern part of the island. From Cebu, one can traverse using the 2 connecting bridges. The easiest is taking the Marcelo B. Fernan Bridge (New Bridge). Take the road going north (to Mactan Export Processing Zone 1) and just follow the main road. About 5 kilometers you will reach the Mactan Shrine. It’s a well-known landmark and asking directions from the locals would be easy.

Balay ni Gloria

Balay ni Gloria

Beach

Beach

Fish Pond

Fish Pond

Garden decoration at Mactan Shrine

Garden decoration at Mactan Shrine

Mark and Lisa at Mactan Shrine

Mark and Lisa at Mactan Shrine

Plants

Plants

Resting area at Mactan Shrine

Resting area at Mactan Shrine

Statue hidden in the plants

Statue hidden in the plants

Tribal Art

Tribal Art

Viewing Deck

Viewing Deck

About the author

  1. Arlen says:

    Hi Mark,

    Kumusta, i am also a cebuana based now in Dubai.. now i am so impressed of your work, currently i developed a new site called http://www.kumusta-ka.com , this is a community social network , focusing more on promoting destinations , events , and more .. we soon launch the site .. and perhaps i personally invite you to publish and promote your works in the site..

    Kindly send me your email add , or you may visit the site and click contact us.

    Anticipating

  2. Elle says:

    hi…

    is there a place in mactan shrine that we can eat?

    thank you

  3. lyka says:

    can i ask if you have an info. about shops that prints t shirts here in mactan?how much does it cost per t shirts?,.,thanks

  4. Armel says:

    hello!

    unsa pwede masakyan gikan mactan airport padulong lapu-lapu shrine? naa jeep?

  5. Renz Borja says:

    Hi good morning Can I ask the contact number of Mactan Shrine?
    Thank You

  6. Renz Borja says:

    Hi Good dAY
    Can I ask the Contact Number/Email Add/Website of Cebu Mactan Shrine?
    Thanks A lot….

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