With no less than seven thousand islands, the Philippine archipelago is abundant in destinations that let you commune with nature and people of all walks of life.
One of the provinces that truly epitomizes its beauty is Davao Oriental. From its perfectly coned mountains to its word-class beaches, this province is one tourism haven that we continuously learning how to unlock.
Situated just hours away from the hustling and bustling streets of Davao City, Davao Oriental is perfect for travelers who want to take a little break from their city life.
Here’s the list of must-visit travel destinations in this province.
Aptly named the “Stairway to Heaven” due to its majestic staircase-like cascades, the Aliwagwag Falls nestles within the Aliwagwag Protected Landscape situated at Barangay Aliwagwag in Cateel, Davao Oriental.
With an astounding height of about 1,110 ft or 333 meters and a cascade of 13 rapids, Aliwagwag Falls is the highest waterfall in the country.
Read more about Aliwagwag Falls here.
Known for its long stretch of powdery, white-sand shoreline with raging waves perfect for surfing and skimboarding, Dahican Beach is one amazing beach destination in Mindanao.
Here, visitors can have premium resorts experience with high-quality amenities, reason why this beach has slowly become a tourist haven for local and foreign travelers over the years.
Most enjoy going here during summer but it is perfect all year round, thanks to our tropical climate.
Bahia Beach Resort
Mati is bestowed with an abundance of fine, white sand shorelines. Some of these have waves that are perfect for surfing and skimboarding, while some have calm waters.
One of the numerous resorts here that offers several amenities perfect for visitors traveling with friends or family is Bahia Beach Resort.
This serene resort offers a laidback resort experience perfect for travelers wanting to relax and unwind. The best part is, Bahia Beach Resort is also a budget-friendly. Their accommodation rates and other amenities are very affordable that anyone here can pay a visit.
To know more about Bahia Beach Resort, read my experience here.
El Don Resort
El Don Resort is a 21-hectare premiere resort that offers world-class and sophisticated accommodation and a top-notch ecotourism experience that you can only find in Mindanao.
Surrounded by lush vegetation with a well-manicured garden and Mediterranean architectural design facing the calm water of Davao Gulf, this five-star resort is a premier ecotourism and wellness destination nestled in the verdant terrains of Governor Generoso, Davao Oriental.
To know more about why you should visit El Don Resort, read our blog here.
Home to the largest pygmy forest in the world, Mount Hamiguitan boasts 600-hectare bonsai and dwarf trees. It is also the first and only UNESCO World Heritage site in Mindanao.
With an elevation of 1,637 m above sea level, this mountain will not just give you a 360-degree view of Davao Oriental but also a critical habitat for threatened endemic flora and fauna, including critically endangered plants, Philippine eagle, and Philippine cockatoo.
Cape San Agustin in Governor Generoso
Popularly known as Parola because of its three colossal lighthouses, Cape San Agustin is located at Sitio Talisay in Barangay Lavigan, the southernmost barangay of Governor Generoso, Davao Oriental.
It is adjacent to the vast stormy waters of Celebes Sea on the south and the tranquil waters of Davao Gulf on the west.
Aside from its raging waters and lighthouses, Parola has long been drawing tourists, especially divers, due to its coral reef teeming with marine life. Cape San Agustin is also the home of the famous pink beach — no less than Parola Beach.
Just what are the other reasons why you should visit Cape San Agustin? Read our blog here.
Lake Carolina in Baganga
Located in Baganga, a first-class municipality on the east coast of Davao Oriental, Lake Carolina boasts its crystal clear and clean brackish water surrounded by towering trees and grasses. This place is a perfect destination for travelers who want a more laid-back and relaxing experience free from any commercial development.
Swimming is allowed in this lake and that is welcome news.
Read more about Lake Carolina here.
San Victor Island
San Victor Island is situated in the coastal town of Baganga, Davao Oriental, facing the vast Pacific Ocean. It is owned by the Diocese of Mati and is currently managed by the Catholic Parish of Baganga.
This 3-hectare tropical island is ideal for a peaceful escape because it is just less than 5 minutes away from mainland Baganga.
San Victor Island also offers overnight accommodations. It also has electricity and a sufficient water supply, just right for travelers planning to stay longer on the island.
To learn more about San Victor Island, read our blog here.
Campawan Curtain Falls
Situated at Barangay Campawan in Baganga, Davao Oriental, the Campawan Curtain Falls has a captivating white-water curtain similar to Tinuy-an Falls in Surigao del Sur. Because of their uncanny resemblance, photos of Curtain Falls posted online are frequently mistaken as Tinuy-an Falls.
Free from any form of significant developments, this unadulterated majestic waterfall showcases a white-water curtain so beautiful and alluring, making it an attraction itself. It also has a water basin with clean water.
Read our blog here to learn more about Campawan Curtain Falls.
Subangan Museum is a museum established in 2014 to showcase the jewels of Davao Oriental and the province’s rich and diverse culture and history. With a thousand square meters of land, Subangan Museum is intended to sustain its expenses by generating income from the entrance fees of its visitors.
The museum is open daily from Monday to Saturday from 9AM to 6PM. The entrance fee is P100 for foreigners, P50 for locals outside Davao Oriental, P20 for province residents, and P10 for children and students.
Sleeping Dinosaur Island
As its name suggests, Sleeping Dinosaur Island resembles a sleeping plesiosaur-shaped dinosaur. Situated in Badas Point, Barangay Dawan in Mati City, this destination will greet you upon your arrival at this coastal town.
The island has 579 hectares of total land area where visitors can trek the Dino Trail – pro-hiker or not. Aside from that, it is also perfect for sight-seeing and here you can witness is fantastic view of the Sleeping Dinosaur Island.
Baganga Sunrise Boulevard
Once a flourishing mangrove forest initiated by the local government of Baganga as a sustainable project, Baganga Sunrise Boulevard is the aftermath when typhoon Pablo wreaked havoc in Davao Oriental. Though the incident was indeed a nightmare, this tourist attraction served as a reminder that Davao Oriental could bounce back amidst natural calamities.
Baganga Sunrise Boulevard is best viewed when the dawn breaks — obviously that is a given. It also has symbolic importance to the people of this province because sunrise reminds them that they can always stand after they fall or that life begins when the golden sun rays break at dawn.
Be sure to drop by Baganga Sunrise Boulevard. There is no entrance fee so that a huge plus. This tourist spot is a favorite past-time location of locals near the area, so you can see many people casually walking with their friends, loved ones, or pets.
How to get around Davao Oriental
It’s practically impossible for you to visit these destinations in a matter of days, obviously, and you will have to devote a lot of time and energy to get there. For one you will have to transfer from one vehicle to another if you are planning to take public transportation. Second, You also have to check their available trips.
The worst part is, under a pandemic you will have to take the risk of being exposed to a lot of different people.
But guess what? You can skip all of these if you decide to rent a vehicle. The best option to get around Davao Oriental and these destinations is by renting a car from Davao City’s best car rental agency — Car Rental Davao.
Aside from saving time and, ultimately, a significant amount of money, renting a car is also the safest option there is. You can skip the long queue of passengers at the transport terminal and you can get there faster and safer at any time of your choosing.
Car Rental Davao has all the units you can choose from with cheap car rental fees. We have sedans, SUVs and vans, just choose which vehicle to rent depending on the number of people accompanying you on your Davao Oriental trip.
If you opt to rent the car longer for this trip or another, we can offer special discounts and arrangements for you. Renting a car from us also guarantees you get 24/7 roadside assistance.
For more travel guides, visit our Car Rental Davao blog here. You may also follow us on our social media accounts.