Dried Mango Chronicles: Kublai Khan and the Day before Cebu City Marathon

One of my most eagerly awaited event to jumpstart my year has arrived, the Cebu City Marathon.  Flying in on a Saturday afternoon gave me just enough time to claim my kit, do my last grocery shopping, and eat all I can—wait, uhm, yeah, eat all I can!

Departing from NAIA Terminal 3: We used the sky bridge which led us down to a bus: “Riding a bus. More fun in the Philippines.” 

This is part of a series

Right after checking in at my posh hotel near the starting line, I was quickly on my way to Ayala Center Cebu’s Active Zone to claim my kit.  I had panicked while commuting from the airport to my hotel as my claiming receipt had indicated that claiming time is only until 5PM, whereas it’s already 5:30pm and I was still on my way to my hotel!

Wish I could pack my shoes like this, but they’re not always that “presentable”
Can you see where the meter is? 😀

For some reasons unknown to me, air traffic from NAIA (Manila) was really heavy these past few days so our plane was stuck and inevitably got delayed.  Arriving in Cebu I was greeted by Saturday rush hour so my travel from the airport to Cebu IT Park was painfully long.  I had thought that I could even get some decent sunset shots, but it was past sundown when I arrived at my hotel.

One of my frustrations is getting a picture of this bridge: Marcelo Fernan
My crib 😀

Going back, I actually missed the claiming area of Cebu City Marathon the first time I passed by it even if it was right under my nose.  Last year, their area was very hard to miss as they had sponsors placing booths and giving product promotions to participants.  This year, it was a simple counter, but at least there was no queue and the people manning the counter were friendly.

Next stop was to a popular running store to get myself some energy gels.  If my memory serves me right, energy gels are normally priced ₱85 in Manila, but in Cebu it’s only ₱79.  Then it was off to the supermarket to get me some food and drinks.

Finally, before concluding the night, one last meal before the big race.  I so wanted to eat in one of my long list of favorite restaurants in Ayala Center Cebu, but to my dismay they’re all jam-packed and queues were long.  I was down to my last resort—pick a new one.  And with that I was lead to this place called Kublai Khan’s.

Located at Ayala Center Cebu

Kublai Khan’s is so much like other Mongolian-style restaurants where you basically get everything you want, place it in a bowl, and they cook it for you, but the main difference is the price: you can eat all you want with bottomless drinks for a measly ₱285!  Unbelievable!  I actually didn’t plan on having a feast the night before my race, but hey, I’m hungry!

Waiting for my food to cook...

I may not be a “Master Chef” but I was so proud of my “recipes.”  First, I didn’t poison myself, and second, it was “acceptable” for my “discriminating” appetite.  Too bad though that my stomach isn’t as “bottomless” as their food and drinks, but at ₱285, I was a very satisfied customer!

Round 1: Sorry, taken with my point and shoot
Round 2: this time with noodles

In case you’re not a fan of buffets, fret not as they also have “All You Can Fill Bowl” which, as the name suggest, is having a bowl for you to fill.  They also have ready-made sets if you don’t want to break a sweat, or you simply just don’t trust your instincts. 😀


Kublai Khan’s is definitely a value for money and the selection that they offer is also excellent.  You have the usual “seafood” (fish balls and the likes of), chicken, beef, liver, gizzard, etc. with a lot of sauces to choose from.  For carbs you have rice and noodles (the usual and vermicelli type).  I would’ve preferred pasta but I guess these three options are good as well.  As far as the taste is concerned, that’s all in your hands, although they do help you in case you’re clueless with what you’re doing.  They also cook your food well so there are times that it could take some time from picking to eating.  To sum it up, highly recommended!

You may also use this guide 🙂

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Dried Mango Chronicles:

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