Davao City is considered to be one of the most progressive cities in the country. But beyond its clean streets and trustworthy cabbies, the city has an interesting mix of different cultures, personalities, and influences that make it a must-visit for any traveller. If you’re planning a visit to the Durian Capital, here are a few things to add to your itinerary.
Be one with the wild
1. Davao Crocodile Park
The Davao Crocodile Park is more a leisure park than a zoo. With its state of the art crocodile farming systems and modern facilities, animals are surely well taken cared of. Aside from Crocodiles, the park also features other wildlife such as bearcats, tigers, orangutans, and more. Here, guests get to see the animals in action through shows and activities like the Koi Feeding Frenzy and the Tiger Climb.
- Type: Wild Life Sanctuary
- Location: Gadi Road, Talomo, Davao City
– Monday-Thursday: P250/adult, 150/kids aged 2-12
– Friday-Sunday: P300/adult, 175/kids aged 2-12
- Hours: 8:00am-7:00pm
- Things to do: Adopt an animal, Walk the tightrope, Watch a show
- Contact: +63 82 286 8883
2. Philippine Eagle Center
With over 30 Philippine Eagles, rare birds, reptiles, and other animal species, the Philippine Eagle Center was opened to the public to educate the Filipino people on wildlife conservation. The Center simulates a tropical rainforest environment where you can watch the majestic birds spread their wings, while learning more about ways to save them.
- Type: Wildlife Sanctuary
- Location: Malagos, Calinan, Davao City
- Getting there: From the Annil Terminal, buses going to Calinan leave every 15 minutes. Once in Calinan, tricycles are available to take you to the Philippine Eagle Center. Total travel time from the city is about an hour.
- Budget: P150
- Hours: 8:00am-5:00pm
- Things to do: Get educated on conservation, Watch the birds fly
- Contact: +63 82 324 1860
Go on an adventure
3. Panas Falls
Located in the “basin” of Davao del Norte and a 2 hour drive from the city, Panas Falls is a multi-tiered waterfall with bright turquoise water. The falls is tucked within a forest and surrounded by beautiful rolling hills making it the ideal spot for nature lovers. Visitors can easily waste a day taking a dip in the cool water, and enjoying a picnic under one of the shaded cottages.
- Type: Waterfalls
- Location: New Corella, Davao del Norte, Philippines
- Getting there: From the city, take a bus to Tagum. Once in Tagum, ride a jeep to New Corella. Get dropped by the Municipal hall where you ride a habal-habal to the falls.
- Budget: 50-100 (with cottage)
- Things to do: Swim, Picnic
- Contact: +63 921 265 6668
4. Mount Apo
Standing a staggering 2956 meters above sea level, Mt. Apo is the highest mountain in the Philippines. The mountain is considered as one of the top-of-the-bucket-list destinations in the country. It’s famous for its panoramic views, presence in local mythology, and rich culture present in the surrounding areas. For those looking for a full experience, local groups offer a 3 day and 2 night hike up the easiest Kidapawan trail.
- Type: Mountain/Volcano
- Location: Cotabato, Davao del Sur
- Getting there: From the Davao International Airport, ride a taxi to the Ecoland Transport Terminal. From there, take a southbound bus and inform the driver or conductor that you will be dropped off at the Santa Cruz Terminal. Then you have the option to ride a motorcycle, tricycle or taxi to the municipal hall.
Climb fee – 500/head, 750/foreign national, 400/student
Guide fee – 800/day
Porter fee – 350/day
- Hours: Call tourism office for schedule
- Things to do: Hike, Camp, Appreciate Nature
- Contact: +63 93 990 64243 (Kidapawan tourism office)
5. Maxima Aquafun Resort
Unlike other resorts in Samal Island, Maxima Aquafun does not have the soft stretch of white sand dotted with relaxing tourists. Instead, it is a place where you can rough it out and awaken your adventurous side. Along with the regular beach activities, the resort has a giant slide, diving boards, zorb balls and other fun activities to keep you entertained for hours.
After a whole day of activities, you can choose to take a nap in one of the resort’s cabanas.
- Type: Waterpark/Resort
- Location: Peñaplata, Samal, Davao, Philippines
- Getting There: From the airport, take a cab to Sta. Ana Wharf near Magsaysay Park. You can then take the ferry boat that goes directly to the resort at 9am and goes back to the Wharf at 4pm.
- Budget: P300/head
- Things to do: Jet-Ski, Nature trails, snorkeling, Water activities
- Contact: 0917 890 4111
Taste the town
6. Riverwalk Grill
Travels are never complete without sampling something exotic and out of your comfort zone — that’s where Riverwalk Grill comes in. If you’re up for the challenge, the main stars of this restaurant are the crocodile and ostrich meat dishes. With twists on the familiar such as the Crocodile Sisig, and Ostrich Omelette, the Riverwalk Grill is a favorite stopover for fearless foodies.
- Type: Filipino/Exotic
- Location: 7 C De Guzman St, Talomo, Davao City
- Budget: P300-P500
- Things to do: Eat, Try exotic food
- Contact: +63 82 221 9643
You can’t leave Davao without trying this exotic fruit. Durian has almost become synonymous to the city as it’s more abundant here than anywhere else in the Philippines. Infamous for its distinct smell, Davaoeños have become creative in coming up with ways of serving the fruit. If you’re not brave enough to have it plain, you can find durian in candies, ice-cream, coffee, cookies, and in other forms all over the city.
Practice your haggling skills
8. Roxas Avenue Night Market
Roxas Avenue is a colorful and busy part of the city, and one of the best places for cheap and delicious local delicacies. Walk down the whole stretch and expect stall after stall of fresh fruits, grilled meats, seafood, and multiple variations of your favorite dishes. Small tables are scattered around the area for groups with full meals, while vendors selling small trinkets and t-shirts roam the area. After eating, multiple ukay-ukays (thrift-shops) surround the area, so take your pick and bargain away!
- Location: Roxas Ave, Poblacion District, Davao City
- Getting there: You can commute to Roxas Avenue from anywhere in the City. Almost all jeepney routes pass by or through the street so it’s easy to get there.
- Budget: P100 (for a feast!)
- Hours: 6:00pm-12:00am
- Things to do: Bargain hunting, Midnight Snacking
- Contact: +63 915 259 2811
9. Aldevinco Shopping Center
Built in the ‘60’s Aldevinco is one of the longest running shopping centers in Davao City. The 8,000 plus square meter complex houses an art gallery and over a hundred shops that showcase the Mindanaoan heritage. This is the best place to find uniquely Davao products such as locally crafted antiques and handmade items.
- Location: Claro M. Recto Ave, Poblacion District, Davao City
- Budget: 10:00am-9:00pm
- Things to do: Buy pasalubong
- Contact: +63 915 259 2811
Get some R&R
10. Pearl Farm
If you need to escape from the noise of urban life, The Pearl Farm is exactly your place. The luxurious island getaway is the only 5-star resort in the province. It has 70 rooms that seamlessly combine traditional Mindanaoan colors with modern design, as well as an iconic parola where guest are treated to a 360 degree view of paradise. Other activities you can enjoy include Mandaya Weaving, gym access, spa services, and more.
- Location: Brgy Adecor, Kaputian – Samal – Kaputian Road, Babak, Island Garden City of Samal, Davao del Norte
- Getting there:From the airport, head to Pearl Farm Marina in Lanang Davao Beach Club. From there, you will take an approximately 45-minute boat ride up to Samal Island. You can also arrange for hotel transfers from the airport.
- Budget: Starts at 10,000 ++ depending on season
- Things to do: Visit Mandaya Weaving Center, Candlelit picnic by the ocean, Gym, Water-sports
- Contact: +63 82 285 0601
Enjoy a fun experience and check out other tourist spots to visit, restaurants to try and more in Davao. Discover cheap hotel deals and cheap flights from carriers like Philippine Airlines, AirAsia, and more with Traveloka!