Things to Do in Davao
If you’re a nature lover, you will fall in love with the outdoors that Davao has to offer. From waterfalls to whitewater rafting to hiking Davao has something for everyone.
Perhaps the most inspiring of Davao’s natural sites is Mount Apo, the largest mountain in the country. It soars above the city at 10,311 feet (3,144 meters). It’s actually a volcano so you better hope that it doesn’t go off while you’re visiting! Home to a multitude of different ecosystems, including lowland tropical rain forest, mid-mountain rainforest, and high-mountain rainforest, it offers lots of wonderful hiking trails for people of all abilities.
However be sure to bring food and water because there are no restaurants or even food stalls to purchase snacks and drinks on the Mountain. Also, be sure to bring rain gear because seasonal storms can appear out of nowhere.
Waterfalls in Davao
Like the rest of Mindanao Island, Davao is home to many waterfalls. The most picturesque of them are Epol Falls. Although it’s 100 kilometres from Davao, there are buses and taxis that can take you there and once you arrive, you will be glad that you came. After a small PHP50 entry fee, you can hike to the falls and cool off in the clear blue waters, surrounded by tropical trees and greenery.
Whitewater rafting is also a popular activity that tourists do on the Davao River. There are multiple operators throughout the region and you don’t need to have any sort of experience to take a boat ride. You can go out for as long or short of a trip as you want (the operator will drop you at one point in the river and drive to meet you at an agreed upon meeting point farther down the river) and prices for a few hours generally run around PHP1000.
In addition to being famous for growing fruit, Davao also is very well known for growing orchids which are exported all over the world. Many of the gardens that grow orchids allow visitors to come tour the site, which is like visiting a botanical garden. One of these gardens is Sul Orchids, which allows tourists to visit for free. If you wish to purchase orchids after your visit, they are available for a reasonable price. The Sul Orchids garden is a little bit outside of the city but a taxicab to and from the garden shouldn't cost more than PHP400.
Shopping in Davao
If the urge to begin shopping kicks in, you can check out the Abreeza Mall, which is located on J.P. Laurel Avenue, right downtown. With all the chains that you would be accustomed to in a western mall, and a handful of Filipino shops to add a local flavour, the Abreeza Mall is a great option to hang out in the air conditioning, make some purchases, and get out of the heat.
Davao for adrenaline junkies
Davao is also a popular place for extreme sports. Hang gliding and other adrenaline pumping activities are popular for tourists in the city.
One such activity is Zip City, located in the Maa region of Davao. It’s also a little bit outside of downtown, but a round-trip taxi ride will cost no more than PHP300 if you know how to haggle. Once you arrive, you will find a zip line suspended hundreds of meters above the forest with a beautiful panoramic view of Davao City. After climbing to the top of the tower, you strap in safely to your harness and jump off! For a few minutes, you’ll feel like Philippines Eagle, gliding over the verdant canopy of the forest below. For a family of five, you can all zip line for PHP500.