Clean. Progressive. Modern. If you’re searching for city that capitalizes on the outdoors, you might just find Davao City a pleasant surprise.
The Davao Riverfront Complex houses the Crocodile Park, one of the city’s most popular attractions. The park showcases more than just crocs — it is also home to a variety of wildlife. Be sure to catch feeding time, educational talks and other shows. The complex also contains the Davao Butterfly House and the Tribu K’Mindanawan, a cultural village that holds an impressive fire-dancing performance. When you’ve worked up an appetite, try Filipino fare or exotic crocodile and ostrich-based cuisine at the RiverWalk Grill.
Amp up the fun at the Zorb Park and Water Ball, where you can enjoy rolling around while encased in a giant plastic ball. Head on to the zipline facilities in Outland Adventure and Zip City for an adrenaline rush coupled with panoramic views of the city. Davao City is also home to the first wakeboarding facility in Mindanao . Whether you’re a seasoned pro or a rookie who’s looking for fun, Deca Wakeboard Park is the destination for you.
Then try river rafting at the Davao Wild Water Adventure. Brave Davao River’s mighty waters and experience a 10-kilometer stretch of pure river rafting fun.
Elsewhere in the city, Eden Nature Park offers activities such as camping, trekking, horseback riding, fishing and even a zip line.
The Malagos Garden Resort has stunning gardens in full bloom (including the endemic Waling-Waling orchid), stately pine trees and a collection of pieces by national artist Napoleon Abueva.
Then there’s the Philippine Eagle Center, a habitat that over 30 Philippine Eagles call home. (The Philippine Eagle is not only one of the world’s largest eagles but is also critically endangered.)
If you’re just looking for a quick stroll, take your pick from the many parks in the city — the expansive and breezy People’s Park is always a good choice.
For a quick history lesson, make your way to Museo Dabawenyo and Davao Museum. This museum features galleries on local tribes and Muslim communities, historical landmarks, archives and various memorabilia.
Wondering where to stay? Marco Polo Davao has elegantly furnished rooms offering views of Mt. Apo or the Davao Gulf, as well as lavish pampering at its Lazuli Spa.
Its convenient location also means you can do your shopping at malls like SM City Davao, SM Lanang Premier, Abreeza Ayala Mall, Davao Chimes Mall, and several big local malls.
Don’t forget to drop by local coffee chain Blugre to try their famous durian coffee and durian cheesecake.
Top Things To Do in Davao
• Have an animal encounter
Or several of them — from the reptiles at the Crocodile Park to the majestic Philippine Eagle at the Philippine Eagle Center.
• Bounce around
Try walking over water or rolling down a hill in a Zorb.
• Hang out outdoors
Go for a leisurely afternoon at People’s Park, family fun at the Eden Nature Park or adrenaline-pumping white water rafting at Davao Wildwater Adventure. Scream your hearts at the zipline destinations or ride the thrill at Deca Wakeboard Park.
• Learn about local culture
Learn more about the city’s heritage and its people at the Museo Dabawenyo and Davao Museum or inject a dose of indigenous culture at Tribu K’Mindanawan.
• Pamper yourself
Enjoy a relaxing treatment at Marco Polo Davao’s Lazuli Spa or in any of the 100-plus spas around the city for that much needed rub-down.
How to Get to Davao
Fly from Manila (less than two hours) to Davao via the Davao International Airport.
Flights are also available from other key cities such as Butuan, Clark, Cebu, Cagayan de Oro, Dipolog, Iloilo, Kalibo, Puerto Princesa, Zamboanga and even Singapore.
Buses are available from Manila and key points in Mindanao, including Butuan, Cagayan de Oro, Cotabato, Digos, General Santos, Kidapawan, Koronadal, Surigao and Tagum.
There are ferries that travel from Manila to Davao.