It was a little past 3PM in the afternoon and I was hurrying up for my meeting with the editors Max and Marlen Limpag, husband and wife of mycebu.ph, who are also my friends in running, to check on their latest project with Smart. Meeting place, the Heritage of Cebu monument in Parian, Cebu City.
The Parian District was once the enclave of rich Filipino Chinese during the Spanish colonial period and, while the area has lost its luster in the present times, there are still notable heritage structures worthy of preservation and visit.
But I wasn’t here for a tour. Instead, I was to witness a demo by the duo on the latest heritage tourism development, with Cebu City as their laboratory. It is both promising and relevant to today’s digital tourist armed with the latest gadgets and how technology can help enrich the experience.
MyCebu.ph together with Smart bring this three pronged project to fruition: first, a downloadable and free Sinulog e-guide (download here, review here) that visitors can download for reading in the Ipad, Android tablet, Kindle and capable smartphones. This is in partnership with the Department of Tourism, Ayala Center and the Sinulog Foundation.
It will be available at the Mactan International Airport, select hotels, Ayala Center, Sinulog Foundation office and online via MyCebu.ph. Visitors can either download it at the website or scan a QR code at a designated area. Internet connection is needed.
Second, tourism information deliveryon key heritage sites and monuments via quick response or QR code scanning.
At the Heritage of Cebu monument, there’s a short info about the structure plus a QR code. Scanning the latter will fetch additional and more up to date information via internet.
This one is promising. Soon, videos, archival photos, and audio will be added to make the experience better. Other than that, the additional info will carry social media links to update like Twitter, Foursquare and Facebook.
Lastly, a Guide to Cebu 2012 will be made available during the Sinulog. This is another downloadable and free ebook that visitors can get. As this is focused solely on Cebu, expect it to be exhaustive in terms of what to do, where to go, eat and shop while vacationing in the island.
This surely is an important step in Cebu tourism. Asked why these digital books and latest technology?
Most travelers nowadays bring along tablets, e-readers or smartphones. An electronic guidebook would be very useful to them because they no longer need to carry around heavy books. Our guidebook is an extensive resource that you can take with you wherever you go.
The project showcases journalism that takes full advantage of new technology to deliver information to people. With this, people are able to read on their phone or tablet about historic events right at where these happened
– Marlen Limpag, MyCebu.ph editor
If you’re in Cebu during the Sinulog, don’t forget to get your copy of the Sinulog eguidebook and visit the Parian district where you can try these digital advancements in tourism.