The Galleon Andalucia received over 60,000 people in five days while docking at Pier 1 in Cebu City.
Cebu City Councilor Margarita Osmena disclosed this to reporters as the council passed a resolution expressing its appreciation to the people behind the Galleon, which docked in Cebu last Oct. 13.
It was supposed to leave for Bohol last Tuesday but rough seas due to typhoon Juan caused the ship to stay for two more days.
Last Thursday, the ship again tried to sail but corals prevented it from docking in Bohol, as this might destroy the ship.
The ship, a replica of the 17th Century Galleon Victoria, is made of wood. While the galleon was still at the Malacanang sa Sugbo Friday, it only received visitors that had appointments through Dr. Jocelyn Gerra, executive director of the culture and heritage unit of the Ramon Aboitiz Foundation Inc.
Gerra was the first on the list of people and agencies that the council thanked for the successful exposition of the galleon in Cebu.
The galleon was not open to the public for its extended stay in Cebu because the crew is fixing some parts of the ship, as routine maintenance work, said Osmena.
A group of students, some reporters and City Hall staff were barred by the Presidential Security Group (PSG) at the Malacanang sa Sugbo Friday because they did not have the proper appointment schedule from Gerra and the security group.
The galleon was also set to dock at the Shangrila Hotel in Mactan last Thursday, but Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama said the hotel was too private.
”Many people need to see the galleon,” said Rama.
He called it meaningful for the city to receive the galleon because it was in Cebu City that Christianity first took root in the country when the Spaniards arrived with a gift of the Sto. Nino.
Rama also called on the President to transfer the galleon from Cebu City Pier 1 to the Malacanang sa Sugbo shortly after the galleon docked because the presidential residence in Cebu is aptly surrounded by historical structures such as the Fort San Pedro and Plaza Independencia.
The Galleon Andalucia is on a 600-day trip from Marid, Spain as part of its festival “Dia Del Galleon,” commemorated every eight of October, which celebrates the galleon trade established in the Philippines. (PNA)