Pinakalit! My Short Visit In Davao City & Samal

A supposed-to-be full 2 days stay in Davao City was trimmed into 1 and 1/2 because of flight schedule changes (thanks to the unfavorable weather conditions). But this didn’t stop me in visiting Davao and bonded with a close friend.

 

Davao City

Secure, Clean and Disciplined City

I can say that Mayor Duterte and the city government officials did a great job in Davao. Well, kudos to the locals too as it would have not been possible if they don’t support their leaders.

I have proven that it is really a clean city and people are very disciplined. My friends and I spent a night in Matina Town Square (sort of the Mango Avenue if you’re in Cebu). People gathered in one area for smoking. Establishments stopped selling liquors and other alcoholic beverages at 12mn but they can still be there at MTS until 2am. They have wide roads in Davao and I can say that I haven’t experienced any traffic congestion. The roads are super clean. I was just surprised why I cannot see any street cleaners as early as 7am when in Cebu you can still visibly see them at that hour. I asked my friend and said that she hadn’t also seen them citing that most store owners and locals clean up their messes to avoid fines and community service. Ahh I wish it’s the same here in Cebu.

Most of their jeepneys are small too. They have their sort of Lawin jeeps but nothing compared to most of the jeeps we have in Cebu. The bigger jeepneys have farther destinations (that can reach to the nearby province of Tagum) and the smaller ones are in the city area only.

 

Dialect

Most people in Davao speaks Cebuano but it is a slightly different Cebuano compared to those which are spoken in Cebu. Their dialect has a Tagalog combination in it. Perhaps, if you are looking for info about their dialect,  you can read this page http://info.philtravelcenter.com/davao-dialect.php.
Few of the words I learned:

 

Davao – Cebu – English 

  • kambyo – sukli – change
  • kanto – eskina – corner
  • mag adto ka dri – ari ka dri – come over here (it’s kind of awkward to hear this but it’s the normal thing in there. mag adto ka dri lol)

Street Food

I was able to spend a night in Roxas Night Market. It is sort of a hawker center but Filipino style. It is the same with the night market we have in Colon, Cebu. Lots of street foods are sold such as barbeque, proven, fish ball, grilled fish, dragonball and more. There are even ukay-ukay (preloved clothes) and their massage centre.

Dragonball – No it’s not kami hami wave huh! It’s like a deep fried molo ball, which tastes like siomai

 

Pastel – no, it’s Camiguin’s pastel. This one’s a rice meal – rice topped with spicy minced chicken (halal food)

 

Proben – deep fried chicken skin (with flour)

 

Durian

I wasn’t able to taste the famous “durian” fruit but hey I was able to sip a durian coffee. I know, I know it’s not the same thing but the coffee tastes really good. I bought few packs of Durian candies at Apo ni Lola (that was where the Durian coffee was bought too).

Of course, I did some photo op with President Duterte! Yes! I know right! Lucky me .. (pancit canton)! But not the real one, only a replica of him. HAHA!

say hi to Tatay Digong!

 

I was also able to try the famous Aling Foping’s durian halo-halo! Tasted good too…

 

People’s Park at Night

Walking in the street of Davao City at night is not scary at all. Police officers are visible anywhere. They are friendly  too! They have advanced police motorbikes, ambulance, and fire trucks too! Some are doing their night jogs at the People Park while others prefer to spend the night with their loved ones star gazing.

 

 

Samal Island

I spent a whole day in Samal and visit its known tourist spots – Monfort Bat Caves, Hagimit Falls & Kaputian Beach. It is a different province and it’s not under the jurisdiction of Davao. I have already heard that security might not be the same as you’re in Davao. But during my stay, I didn’t feel less secure at all.

From Davao City, we went to Sta Anna Wharf, that’s where the barge will take us to Samal. It’s a very short ride actually. You only have to pay 60 pesos for a motorcycle including the driver and rider.

Monfort Bat Caves

I did enjoy the motorcycle ride around the island. The island is quite peaceful. We had our first stop at the Monfort Bat Caves.

 

 

Entrance fee: 100 pesos

Environmental fee: 5 pesos

Yes, I think it’s quite expensive for a short tour within the bat sanctuary. Why? Because the bats are looking for their own food and I think there’s not much of a huge maintenance needed there. Okay. Stop ranting.


The residing fruit bats are tiny. They are like a small rat but with wings. LOL. The tour guide said that they spent the entire day sleeping and then get out of the cave at night to get food. These tiny creatures are one of the reasons why there are lots of trees and plants in the island. Great job!

Since it’s a bat cave, expect a very foul odor. But hey, I haven’t found batman yet. JK!

Hagimit Falls

From the main road, you need to travel about 10-15 minutes to reach the multi-tiered Hagimit Falls. There’s still room for improvement for this falls, especially to the higher tiers.

 

Multiple areas to swim though the best part has sort of 2 main waterfalls that are closer to each other. You can dive in certain parts. You can even go inside the cave of the waterfalls, but it’s more like a short tunnel. You may ask the guide to help you out.

Entrance Fee: 40 pesos

Kaputian Beach

Entrance fee: Free (since it was a town fiesta)

 

There are cottages, tables, tents for rent for ordinary days. Not sure about their rates though.

Barangay Kaputian was having their fiesta by the time we visited it. And what would you expect if it’s a fiesta? Lots of people! The white sandy beaches of Kaputian was filled with locals and visitors. The resort owner was generous enough not to collect any entrance fees… so lucky us!

 

It’s not as clean as the beaches in Bantayan Island perhaps of the ongoing celebration of the fiesta. But it’s still a good area to swim and chitchats. Across the Kaputian resort is the Talikod Island, which according to my friend has better beaches (though there were sightings of sharks roaming around). yaiks! If you have heard the news, that’s where a dead sperm whale was seen too.

My visit was indeed short but was filled with laughter and fun! I hope I can have a longer visit soon!

Special thanks to Trecia and her family for a very warm welcome! Sa sunod na pd friend!

Check our adventure Davao City and Samal Island at the video below:

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adventure seeker. wanderer. videography enthuasist . follow my travel stories at https://asaniquen.com.