Cebu City, Philippines

Built in 1972, the Cebu Taoist Temple is inside the Beverly Hills Subdivision. It was built by Cebu’s wealthy Chinese community at a time when temples were non existent. The temple holds several deities in multi-level Chinese style architecture within the vast compound. As the photos are proof, the temple is as colorful and clean as it can get. Much of the Chinese temples in Manila are the exact opposite.

The Taoist temple is open to worshipers and non-worshipers alike but must abide by a set of rules. Silence is definitely on the top of the list and photography is only allowed on the exterior but not inside the temple. Even the finer details near the doors and roof details are off limits to shutterbugs. For kids who like to side step the rules there are security guards around the premises who will whisper the rules.

The images below were shot handheld in a drizzle. 3 different exposures were captured as the sky was a washed out white with 1 exposure. So, to keep things short, all the RAW files were thrown into Photomatix and batch processed for good measure.


The entrance way to the temple. No cars ares allowed inside.


The grand view of the Taoist temple emerging from the entry way.


The main building. There were more tourist than worshipers that day.


The main building's front view. Remember, follow the rules: silence and only exterior photography.




A view of Cebu City from 300 meters above sea level.


Shooting a photographer shooting the Taoist temple


The temple is not accessible by foot-rent a car or hire a cab. Make sure the driver waits until you finish or it'll be a long walk down.