Dalaguete is best-known for being the Vegetable Basket of Cebu. The cool climate in the mountain barangays of the town also earned it the title of the Summer Capital of Cebu. Dalaguete is also gradually becoming popular for eco-tourism. The reforestation area of the town is being promoted as an eco-tourism destination in the south. In addition, the town is also home to the only breeding ground of flying foxes in Cebu.
The presence of the Spaniards in Dalaguete started to become more pronounced when it became a visita of the vicarage of Siaro or Sialo (now known as Carcar). Due to this, it is not surprising that a number of Spanish era structures can be found in the town. These heritage structures have become destinations for history and culture enthusiasts. The following are five of the historical structures you can find in Dalaguete:
San Guillermo de Aquitania Church
Dalaguete was established after it became a visita of Carcar. While it was established as an independent parish in 1711, the permanent church structure was only built in 1802. Construction of the San Guillermo de Aquitania Church was completed in 1825. A rectory was later added in 1832 while the belfry was completed in 1860.
The Casa Real or the Municipio is the seat of government in the town of Dalaguete ever since the Spanish period. The structure was supposedly built in 1832. The original building was made of coral stones while clay tiles were used for its roofing. It had a symmetrical façade and was shaped like an L.
The Cristo Rey monument in Dalaguete was erected with the aim of uplifting the spiritual life of the residents of Dalaguete. It was built in 1938 through the efforts of Fr. Ruperto Sarmiento. It featured a balustered stairway along with a perimeter fence. The Cristo Rey monument is located in the middle of the plaza in front of the church.
Similar to many towns on the island, Dalaguete was also home to watchtowers. These watchtowers were the first line of defense of the town against pirates and raiders. The Poblacion watchtower, which is also called the Bantay Moros, originally had two levels. It was part of the network of watchtowers along the southern coast of Cebu and was built in 1768. Today, the watchtower is one of the landmarks of the town. The upper level was modified as a pavilion-like structure was added.
Aside from the watchtower in the poblacion, a cannon was also stationed in the town to protect the town from pirates and raiders. It was the strongest weapon of the Spaniards against invaders. The cannon was supposedly the same one used by Sr. San Guillermo when invaders attacked the town. Stories indicated that a giant was seen walking along the shores of Dalaguete carrying the cannon.