JUST in time for the golden anniversary of Davao Oriental, we have prepared a list of the places you must never miss to visit in the province.
Dahican Beach Mati City
From someone raised in Mati, Dahican has become our standard for beaches.
If your beach can’t surpass or even just equal its alluring deep blue sea and powdery white sand shore, you better not try convincing us. Promise, this seven-kilometer stretch facing the Pacific Ocean can be anyone’s perfect beach getaway. It is known for its inviting powerful waves which made it a surfing and skim-boarding hub in Davao Region. The crescent-shaped coastline is also a sanctuary for sea turtles. Dahican is also perfect to be viewed from above via an ultra-light plane by the Mindanao Saga Flying Club.
Aliwagwag Falls Cateel
It is not just another curtain falls. It is more than that. This famous falls is made up of more than 100 cascading waterfalls making it as the country’s highest waterfalls. It is made up of rock formations varying in shapes and sizes. The falls is located just 30-40 minutes away from Cateel proper.
This towering piece of nature is not just for casual travelers but also for thrill-seekers as the Aliwagwag Falls Eco Park offers 680-meter zip line with a height of 55 meters from the ground and a monkey bridge. I tried crossing its monkey bridge (for only P50) and it’s a hell of an experience. Facing your fears, indeed, is always worth it.
Cape San Agustin Governor Generoso
I and my family visited this place last December 31, 2016. And it’s a good way of capping the year.
It’s a 360-degree visual treat of seascape and landscape. It features three lighthouses–each representing historical stories. Climbing one lighthouse will enable visitors to witness the wild yet mesmerizing clash of waters of the Celebes Sea and Davao Gulf and enjoy the breathtaking panoramic view of the bluish waters below.
San Victor Island Bagangga
If you wish to have an island escapade, this island, should be in everyone’s list of choices. It is just a quick five-minute boat ride from Barangay San Victor in Bagangga. It is now a perfect island destination, an example of resiliency as it was devastated by Typhoon Pablo back in 2012.
Staying overnight is also perfect in the island as tents, aircon and non-aircon rooms are available. The sounds of the waves can be your lullabies at night. However, the island owner has yet to open its restaurant but it offers cooking services for a minimal fee, you just need to tell the island staff upon booking.
Pusan Point Caraga
It’s a must visit. Who wouldn’t want to be in a place where the first rays of the rising sun strike? Pusan Point is a 40-foot high rock promontory which faces the Pacific Ocean. The Pusan Point Discovery Center and Eco-Park’s attraction is a Jubilee Cross planted on the rough edges of the point where the Pacific surf hits in giants, especially during the monsoon season. Other features include meditation, an amphitheater that can seat some 100 people, a 200-square-meter swimming pool, a sundial and a two-story building that houses the Science Discovery Center showcasing a planetarium and other science-themed interactive sections.
Mt. Hamiguitan San Isidro
It’s the province gem of nature. This 6,000-hectare home of 1,403 species of fauna and flora owned the highly-coveted Unesco World Heritage Site in 2014 and lately, as an ASEAN Heritage Park.
Its famous attraction is the 225-hectare pygmy forest, a field of bonsai trees estimated to be century-old. Last year, it inaugurated the Eco-Park and Interpretation Site wherein one to experience the Mt. Hamiguitan.
If you haven’t been south-bound or if you’re living in the southern part of the country but unable to explore its wonders? Think twice and think Davao Oriental, the province will never fail you. Ever.
Published in the SunStar Davao newspaper on June 30, 2017.
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