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Amazing Davao: Eagles that Make You Swoon, Enjoy the City's Best

May 9, 2014       Amazing Philippines
Amazing Davao!
Enjoy Davao City in 3 Days

One of the best destinations in the country is also the hardest place to tour since you cannot get enough of the place in one day. Somehow, a 3-day adventure won’t even suffice but here’s REACH’s recommendation on how to have a satisfying tour of Davao City. 

Upon Arrival

Best to take the first flight to Davao City to get the most of the 3-day getaway

First Day – Relaxation Day

Since the early flight may get you drowsy, the first day may not be the time for exciting adventures! Instead, after check-in and a little bit of rest, enjoy a stroll around the 4-hectare People’s Park. The park is the center of recreational activities among the locals. It is usually busy during the 2nd week of March (Araw ng Dabaw), summer and Christmas season and August (Kadayawan Festival).

After a little stretching, you can go to the famous Davao Crocodile Park and see Pangil, the second largest crocodile in the Philippines (Lolong remains to be the largest). You can even try to feed a baby crocodile yourself, but be careful as the experience may be cut short since these starving little ones snap and jump too quickly.

Around noon, you can enjoy a peaceful lunch at Kaonanan sa Tribu K’ Mindanawan, a tribal-inspired restaurant just a few steps away from the park. You can opt to try the Crocodile Sisig or just go for the conventional Filipino favorites.

In the afternoon, it is nice to walk around the famous malls in the city to unwind – Abreeza Mall and SM City. And as the night takes over, be sure to enjoy Davao’s night life. Some of the locals and tourists favorites are Bistro Cellar de oboza 1929, Habana Compound and Paseo de Legaspi, among others.

Second Day – Wild Adventures

Just 10 minutes away from the center of the city, lies a port where you can take a ferry ride to Samal Island, also known as the Island Garden City of Samal. Samal Island is known for its pristine beaches untapped by modernization and rich terrain which trekkers and mountain bikers alike truly enjoy. While on the island, don’t miss out Mamacao Spring and the infamous Samal bats, which are known to successfully aid in the durian pollination. Choose a day tour or spend the night, it’s easy to stay overnight since there are resorts within the island – just make sure to book in advance.

But if you do choose to spend just half of the day in Samal, then once you get back to the city. Be sure to spend a little time appreciating arts and history. Check out Davao Museum, Museo Dabawenyo and D’ Bone Collector Museum, Inc.

Third Day – Eagle Appreciation Day

Since the second day thrills may have got the best of you, on the last day, make sure you give time to check out one of Davao City’s icons, the Philippine Eagle.

Just an hour away from the city proper, the Philippine Eagle Center is home to 36 Philippine Eagles, along with other species of birds, mammals and reptiles. Here, you can enjoy watching the birds in a safe wildlife preserve where they are kept for a whiel before being released into their natural habitat:  the Mindanao forest.  A keeper’s seminar is also available for learning more about the endangered birds, its biological and ecological makeup and how to protect these endangered species.

And since it’s your last day, try to enjoy it with this national icon. It’s not every day you get to meet and experience their majestic presence, especially since their population has been decreasing. Learn a bit on how to aid in their conservation and spread the news so this won’t be the last day you’ll get to spend with them.

All Hail Durian of Davao City

D is for Davao as it is for Durian. When Davao is concerned, it’s inevitable that locals and even tourists ask for durian – whether they may be fan of it or not. And the same goes at the mere mention of the fruit, most Filipinos will tag it as Davao’s very own.

However, durian is not exclusive to Davao alone. In fact, the fruit can be found across Southeast Asia, Thailand being the top exporter. But Davao and most of southern Mindanao in the Philippines just click with the majestic fruit’s cultivation needs. Not only is the quality of soil in Davao a perfect fit for the fruit, the climate generally is temperate.  The city’s ideal setting enables the large number of production of the 16 species of durian found in the country, allowing the local farmers to sell their produce at lower prices with topnotch quality.

But why do people tag the fruit as the “king of fruits”? It may be because of its rough and intimidating exterior of hard shell covered in colossal spikes.  In fact, a single durian can actually cause serious injury if thrown at a person from on high because of its heft, weight  and size.  Durian can also be intimidating to taste due to its most distinct and alarming aroma which caused it to be banned in some public places like airports overseas--the fruit smells like rotting meat.

However, just like a good Christian king, the Durian also has a soft heart or let’s just say, core. Inside the fruit is soft pulpy flesh that has a sweet tang and a creamy delightful texture. The yellowish pulp is not cloying sweet nor sour; its taste can even be compared to custard with a nice twist.  Not everyone’s palate is accustomed to its unique flavor making most first-timers dread their first bite. However, eating Durian gets better with each portion you eat, yet only the brave and the worthy gets to enjoy it.

So the next time you visit Davao, try it buying some Durian for pasalubong.  Have a bite of the royal fruit and once you get the hang of it, you might find yourself having a new favorite and beg for more.


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