Gabii sa Kabilin 2018: Balangay slated on May 25

The Ramon Aboitiz Foundation Inc. (RAFI) Culture and Heritage Unit and its partner Local Government Units (LGUs), museums and cultural organizations will hold the 12th run of the Gabii sa Kabilin on May 25, 2018 from 6 PM to midnight.


The theme for this year’s Gabii sa Kabilin is “Balangay.” It pays tribute to the pre-colonial roots of Philippines, specifically Bisaya culture. The balangay refers to the sailing vessel which transported entire communities throughout the archipelago. The term also describes communities bound together by kinship and communal ties. Selected museums and heritage sites will present different aspecs of pre-colonial Bisaya culture.

“Gabii sa Kabilin is drumming for the 500th anniversary of Magellan’s arrival in the Philippines which will be celebrated in 2021.” Florencio Moreño II, curator of Casa Gorordo Museum said. “Starting this year, our themes will have reference to that expedition that had critical impact not only on Filipino, but world, history, which we are experiencing even to this day,” he added.

“While our 2018 theme focuses on pre-colonial Bisaya life, an overwhelming part of the knowledge that we have on the subject is handed down to us by European chroniclers, like Antonio Pigafetta, who started arriving here with the Magellan expedition,” Moreño said.

The heritage event features 29 cultural destinations in the cities of Cebu, Lapu-lapu, Mandaue, and Talisay.

Throughout the night, participants will be treated to cultural performances, culinary experience, art fairs, and special exhibits, among other, while select participating sites also offer children activities.



This year’s Gabii sa Kabilin is made possible through partnerships with the LGUs of Cebu City, Mandaue City, Lapu-lapu City, and Talisay City. Other government agencies and offices supporting the event are Philippine National Police (PNP), Cebu City Traffic Operations Management (CITOM), Parks and Play grounds Commission and the Cultural and Historical Affairs Office of Cebu City.

To date, Gabii sa Kabilin has four gold sponsors, namely Aboitizland, City Savings Bank, Grab Philippines and VECO.


Guests must purchase a Gabii sa Kabilin ticket worth Php150 only. It comes along with a Gabii sa Kabilin tour map. Also, an e-magazine will be uploaded to provide the public more details on the participating sites.

You may download your own copy of the Gabii sa Kabilin 2018 e-magazine through this link:

Gabii sa Kabilin 2018 e-magazine

The ticket also entitles participants to a tartanilla (horse-drawn carriage) trip in the city’s old district, and unlimited rides in Gabii sa Kabilin-designated buses.

Admission is free for children ages seven and below. The tickets can be purchased and reserved in advance at any of the participating outlets:

To allow participants to walk freely and safely in the historic downtown area of Cebu City, the following roads will be closed on traffic on May 25, 2018 from 5PM to midnight:

 Mabini Street

 P. Burgos Street

 E. Aboitiz Street (formerly Lopez Jaena Street)

Drivers are encouraged to make detours away from these areas at least two hours before the road closure to avoid getting stuck in a traffic jam.


Gabii sa Kabilin Blogging / Vlogging Contest

Gabii sa Kabilin 2018 Phoneography Contest


In 2012, the Cebu City Council passed the Ordinance 2327 declaring the last Friday of May of every year as Gabii sa Kabilin or Night of Heritage.

Culture and Heritage is one of the focus areas of RAFI. It aims to help communities understand, value and share their cultural heritage with others. The foundation’s other focus areas are Integrated Development, Micro-finance & Entrepreneurship, Leadership & Citizenship, and Education.

For more information about Gabii sa Kabilin and other programs of the RAFI Culture & Heritage Unit, please call +63 32 411-1700 / 3431700 local 24537 and look for Junnale Castro, or visit or, or follow @rafiorgph on Twitter.


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