Where to stay, where to eat, where to drink, what to see, what to buy and where to unwind in the city of Davao.
STAY. Whether you are a business traveler or a backpacker, Davao City has a lot to offer in terms of accommodation. Located in the heart of the city, Marco Polo Hotel Davao is one good option for business and luxury travelers. It’s the only five-star hotel in the city. Other options for business travelers are Seda Hotel, Park Inn by Radisson Hotel, Waterfront Insular Hotel Davao and Apo View Hotel. Check hotel rates in Davao. For budget travelers, you may stay at Red Planet Hotel which is located near to SMX Convention Center. If you are looking at a budget place to stay in the city proper, you may check out My Hotel, Hotel Uno, The Royale House Travel Inn & Suites, and Sampaguita Tourist Inn. For shared accommodation, you can stay at Green Windows Dormitel or at My Hometel. You may book your accommodation in Davao here.
SEE. Davao is home to the country’s national bird, so a visit to the city is not complete without seeing the Philippine Eagle up close at the Philippine Eagle Center in Calinan. Another interesting place to see especially if you want nature and adventure is Eden Nature Park in Toril. For city attractions, you may check out the Crocodile Park, People’s Park which is just a walking distance from the City hall, Museo Dabawenyo, D’ Bone Collector Museum, Lon Wa Buddhist Temple, and Davao’s Chinatown. If you like beaches, you may go to the Island Garden City of Samal (IGACOS) which is less than an hour away from Davao City. Samal is also home to the largest colony of Geoffroy’s Rousettes in the world. Monfort Bat Cave made the Guinness Book of World Records in 2010. ( Read: 13 Gorgeous Beaches in Samal)
EAT. Travel is not complete without sampling the best food in the city. Head to Lachi’s for their delectable food and desserts. Must-try are their durian cheesecake, durian sans rival and Asian spicy chicken. If you’re into something unique in Davao, you should visit Palovince Restaurant and try their famous Pakfry. Other restaurants to try while in Davao City are Boiling Crabs and Shrimps, Dencia’s Restaurant for their Tokwa’t Baboy and Lugaw, Glamour Crabs Buffet (Unlimited Crabs for less than P500), Misto Restaurant in Seda Hotel, The White House Fusion Cuisine and Wine Lounge, Tiny Kitchen for their paella, and Shatter Persian Kebab. If you love street food, you should experience the Roxas Night Market. Must-try aside from the usual grilled meat are matcha buchi and Paniza Ice Cream.
DRINK. Davao City is known for its strictly implemented liquor ban but it doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the city’s night life. The city’s liquor ban starts at 1am until 8am. Huckleberry Southern Kitchen & Bar is a popular place where you can grab your favorite drink. Must-try is their rhum infused with different local fruits like mangosteen, cacao and also with chili. Another popular hangout place at night is Matina Town Square where you can enjoy affordable food and drinks while listening to a live band. Other options are: Primo Cafe, Brewery, Club Echelon and other bars in Lanang.
BUY. If you are looking for a place to buy your pasalubong, Aldevinco shopping center should be in your must-visit list. Another option is to go to the Pasalubong Center near People’s Park. If you’re looking to buy fresh fruits, then Bankerohan Public Market is the right place to go. The best time to go on fruit shopping is during the Kadayawan season in August. Durian and Mangosteen are sold at around P30 per kilo. Other fruits such as Marang and Lanzones are also abundant during the fruit season. The famous Pomelo on the other hand can be bought whole-year round at very affordable price.
UNWIND. The best way to unwind in Davao City is by visiting the Garden of Eden Restored in Tamayong. It is an 8-hectare property located at the foothills of Mt. Apo in Tamayong, Calinan District. It was completed in 1999 after six months of 24-hour non-stop construction. Another place to chill is at Jack’s Ridge in Shrine Hills, Matina. You can enjoy an overlooking view of the city from there. The best time to visit Jack’s Ridge is during night time.