Davao is the largest city on the Philippines' second-largest island, Mindanao. It has a huge land area, and the inhabitants like to think of it as one of the most crime-free large cities in the Philippines.
The elected officials have been accused of encouraging vigilantism and death squads. Whatever the truth of these accusations, it's certainly true that, as a visitor, you're certainly less likely to be the victim of robbery or petty larceny than most similar size cities in the Americas with the exception of Canada.
Department of Tourismaddress: 5F, Landco Corporate Center, JP Laurel Avetourist info for all of southern Mindanao.
Davao City Tourist Officeit has a list of places to stay and info for places to see in and around Davao city.
Davao City Library and Information centerphone: +63 82 225-3137address: 3rd floor new city hall, San Pedro St
By planeDavao is the third most important Philippines city after Manila and Cebu. Three domestic airlines fly several times a day between Davao and Manila: Air Asia, Cebu Pacific, Philippines Airlines. There are also direct flights from other Philippine cities: Cebu City, Cagayan de Oro, Iloilo, Zamboanga, Bacolod, Angeles, Puerto Princesa, Boracay, Dumaguete,Tacloban, Tagbilaran.
Cebu Pacific has two non-stop return flights per week from Davao to Singapore . They depart Davao on Thursdays, and Sundays at 17:25 and your get to Singapore at 21:10. They depart Singapore also on Thursdays and Sundays at 21:55 and you get to Davao at 01:40 the next day. Their fares are as a rule a lot better than Silk Air.
- If you have Davao as your main destination in the Philippines, you might want to consider coming in through Singapore or Hong Kong or Doha as this might be the most hassle-free way to enter.
- Cathay Dragon part of Cathay Pacific flies four times a week nonstop from Davao to Hong Kong.
- Silk Air part of Singapore Airlines flies daily from Davao to Singapore .
- Qatar Airways flies a few times a week from Davao to Doha.
- XiamenAir Flies a few times a week to Quanzhou China.
Getting there: A taxi from the Davao Airport to down town Davao costs about , as of 2018. It's also possible to catch a jeepney to town center by walking to the highway (5-10 min walk).
There are passenger ferries coming to/from Samal Island and Talikud Island. Another good way to get from Davao city to Samal Island is by the Island City Express buses that use the 24/7 car ferry from Sasa over to Babak on Samal island. The ticket price for the bus and ferry combined is . If you just use the Car Ferry the ticket costs per person. Island city Express buses go all the way to Kaputian on Samal island. From (Santa Ana wharf) near Magsaysay park boats also leave for Samal island for .
The nearest port with long distance passenger ferries to Manila, Cebu, Iloilo, Bacolod and Bohol Island are now at Cagayan de Oro port or Nasipit port 27 km from Butuan city.
By busMost buses depart and arrival at the Davao City Overland Transport Terminal (DCOTT) located at Maya, Ecoland.
Getting there: It costs by taxi or by jeepney to go the 2 km from the bus terminal to downtown Davao.
- Bachelor Express goes to Surigao, Butuan, Bislig, Mati 173 km, Tandag, Tacloban.
- Rural Transit (part of Bachelor Express) goes to Cagayan de Oro 277 km, Valencia 134 km, Malaybalay 160 km.
- Mindanao Star (part of Bachelor Express) goes to Digos, Kidapawan, Cotabato City. General Santos, Koronadal.
- Yellow Bus. goes to Digos 63 km. General Santos 149 km, Koronadal 201 km.
- Philtranco goes to Manila via Surigao, Tacloban, Calbayog, Legazpi City.
- PP Bus Line also goes to Manila via Butuan, Surigao, Tacloban, Calbayog, Legazpi City.
- Davao Metro Shuttle goes to Panabo and Tagum city 66 km.
- There are minivans going to Cagayan de Oro for , Mati , Kidapawan , Cotabato City and Tagum ; most waiting at Gaisano Mall and Victoria Plaza.
By taxiThe simplest way to get around is by hopping into a taxi. A typical trip can cost about or approximately US$2. Drivers in Davao do not normally bargain if they notice that you are a tourist, hence the cost of the trip is the same in price as a regular. Davao taxi drivers are regarded as the most honest taxi drivers in the Philippines. Taxi drivers in Davao City do not charge tourists extra fare unlike their counterparts in Cebu and Manila. You can also call or send an SMS to the cab company directly to have a cab driver pick you up.
Taxis start their fare at and will add per few hundred meters. Please do say "thank you" or "salamat" once you have arrived at your destination. Davao Taxis issue fare receipts that list the name of the taxi company, the plate number, and the taxi number which could come in handy if one leaves valuable items or documents inside a cab. Just tell your taxi driver if you want to get a receipt.
By jeepneyIf you are up for more adventure, then do as the locals and catch a colorful jeepney. Ask around for which route to take to avoid getting lost. They are usually available 24 hours and cover most of the nooks and crannies of the city. This is the cheapest option for getting around. The usual cost for a jeepney ride is for every 4 km ride, and about a increase per km when going beyond the 4 km (for regular passengers).
A jeepney from downtown Davao to the Davao airport cost and takes 45 min.
To pay, pass your fare to the person next to you, all the way to the driver or the conductor, by saying "bayad po". Paying the exact amount is highly recommended. To stop at a certain destination, say "lugar lang", "para", or knock your coins hard on the steel handle.
By carAnother alternative is to rent a car. There are many cars for rent. If you don't know the routes you can hire drivers by asking the attendant of the rental company. Local companies tend to be cheaper than the national ones.
Avis Car Rental. Airport view hotel. J Camus street. Tel 63-82-2216430.
By busBuses are also available, but these tend to ply exclusively along the north-south route and going out and in the city area. Air conditioned buses to Calinan go from Bankeroham Public Market. Island City Buses go to Kaputian Samal Island via the car ferry at Sasa; these buses go past Magsaysay park .
By water taxiAnother mode of transportation around Davao Gulf is through a water taxi. Water taxis serve the daily commuters and visitors of Davao City, Samal Island, and neighbouring coastal municipalities around Davao Gulf. It will get you to the island, waterfront restaurant, or beach resort you wanted with comfort and ease. The pioneer water taxi service in the Philippines is found in Davao City and has the swift, safe and secure water transport, the best and most professional skippers and has a customer friendly and positive attitude, all incorporated to make your transfer easy and pleasurable.
Mt. ApoThe highest mountain in the Philippines.
phone: +63 82 2868883address: Riverfront Corporate City, Carlos P. Garcia Highway, Davao CityThe park serves as a breeding center of crocodiles and houses also a small zoo, with daily animal shows on the central stage. Possibilities to feed crocodiles, tigers and some other animals for a fee. Ticket includes an entrance to Butterfly Park (8AM-5PM) and K'Mindanawan Village (not a real village, but one for tourists, fire show on F-Su 5:45PM-6:30PM).
Eden Nature ParkAbout 50 km from Davao, Eden Nature Park is close to the town of Toril. It's in the mountains so it's cooler than Davao City. It has nice walks, restaurants, horse riding and a Sky-Rider thing and lots more. It's a pretty good day out and well worth the trip from Davao.
phone: +63 82 2978830address: Shrine Hills Road, MatinaThis was a hangout for Japanese Forces during World War II. It is now a tourist spot in Davao City, where you can have a scenic view of Davao City (especially during the night). There is a restaurant, a pool, bars, cottages, and a trail up and down the ridge, where you can enjoy your stay.
Philippine Eagle CenterSee the Philippine eagle, one of the largest eagles in the world, and one of the most endangered. The center is home to about 30 Philippine eagles. Aside from eagles, it is also home to other birds and animals as well as raptors in a simulated forest environment.
People's Parkaddress: Legazpi Street, Davao CityA public park located along Legazpi Street. A park where people people gather around, enjoy the stroll crossing bridges,exercising around the walkway which circles the park, seeing man-made waterfalls, beautiful plants, etc. It is more enjoyable as the sun goes down and at the night.
San Pedro Cathedralphone: +63 82 2210191address: San Pedro Street, Davao CityThis cathedral, built in the 19th century, is the city's main cathedral. It is across from City Hall.
Shrine of the Holy Infant of Jesusphone: +63 82 2972911address: Shrine Hills Road, MatinaA shrine that is up a hill with views across Davao in which you can unwind, relax, and reflect. There are mass celebrations once in a while per day. A lot of people visit this place during Sundays.
Lonwa Buddhist temple
address: University Avenue (temporary address)No photos except on few recent paintings and a separated room.
Forest Hill Resortaddress: Talomo DistrictOne of the most visited inland resorts in Davao city. Has a very nice big swimming pool and is very clean.
Camp Holiday Resort and Recreatiom Areaphone: +63 82 3033294address: beside Samal Ferry Wharf Samal IslandFor the day fee you get the use of swimming pools, nipa huts, open cottages and a seaside veranda. Very clean.
Davao Museumaddress: 113 Agusan Circle, within Insular VillageLocal history and culture of indigenous peoples.
Wake Board Parkaddress: near TacunanOne of Asia's largest wakeboard parks. Great place for day trips, or rent locally to extend your stay
Banks & ATMsMost ATMs in Davao city have a fee for overseas bank cards and a limit of per withdrawal.
an exception is the ATM at
- HSBC Bank (UK). Ground floor Luisa Avenue Square Jacinto extension.
- The two ATMs at HSBC charge no fee for overseas bank cards and allows up to per withdrawal.
- Aldevinco center. has many money exchanges. C M Recto street (over the street from the Marco Polo hotel). The exchange rates for cash is extremely good.
- Nellie Stephanie Money changer. Aldevinco shopping center. +63 82 224-1448.
- X Changer money changer. 2nd floor Abreeza mall.
Book store & shoe shop
address: Nccc mall and both SM malls in Davao.Second-hand books from the USA and UK.
Shoe Walker Enterpriesphone: +63 82-2271216address: 254 San Pedro StreetLow cost shoe shop.
Gaisano Mall of Davaophone: +63 82 221-6168address: J.P. Laurel AveThis is the largest Gaisano mall in the Philippines. Cinema tickets from per person.
phone: +63 82 224-0811address: Illustre StHas a Gaisano department store & large supermarket.
phone: +63 82 297-6403address: Quimpo Blvd, Ecoland & J P Laurel Ave
Victoria Plazaphone: +63 82 221-4990address: J.P. Laurel AveHas a large supermarket and department store.
phone: +63 82 321-9332address: J.P. Laurel AveGenerika Duugstore is part of the Ayala Group.
Felcris Centrale Mall & Felcris Supermarketsphone: +63 82 225-0207
address: San Pedro Street
Davao is renowned for its durian and pomelo. Durian is definitely an acquired taste, but those who do end up liking it will swear that the bad smell is worth it. Pomelo is a citrus fruit that most closely resembles a grapefruit and s quite common in South East Asia. Beware of bringing durian inside airplanes, hotels and other establishments. They may have strict regulations on allowing durian inside and some do not allow durian to be brought in at all.
Mid-range & splurge
- Na Trang (Jekoy's Grill), Jacinto Extension, beside Central Bank. Authentic Vietnamese cuisine. Try their tofu and mushrooms, Vietnamese pancake, wet lumpia and fried spring rolls. Coffee is great here also.
- Jack's Ridge, Just across the Santo Nino Shrine. Delicious Filipino cuisine, a variety of burgers and American food,with a breathtaking view of the city. Arrive half an hour before sunset, the viewing telescope gives great views,and after sunset, the lights show the extent of the city. Great place to watch a thunder storm from.
- Dencia's, Ilustre Street. Classic Davao-Chinese cuisine. Best orders are tokwa't baboy, congee, and pancit canton.
- De Bonte Koe, Rizal Street. Dutch Cuisine. Try their herring with onions. Never miss the apple pie.
Tadakumaphone: +63 82 2348813address: Damosa Business Center, Mamay RoadServes delicious Japanese dishes at reasonable prices.
De Boerderijphone: +63 82 303-1255address: #6 DBC Bldg-H, McArthur Hway, MatinaCozy international bar with Dutch roots. Burger, steak, pizza & pasta, kroket, bread.
Davao Green Buffet Hausphone: +63 82 2251860address: Corner Legaspi and Gen Luna streetsAll you can eat buffet.
Taco Boyphone: +63 9212029499address: JS Gaisano,Gaisano mall of Davao, SM city. Abreeza MallMexican food. There are also Taco Boys in Gaisano Mall in Tagum, Matina Centerpoint, Ateneo de Davao University and Nccc Mall.
phone: +63 82 321-5065address: Bolton StreetGarden express pizza. Also does breakfasts. Free delivery with no minimum order required.
Jenny Fried Chicken JFCphone: +63 9228882283address: San Pedro streetYou find Jenny fried Chicken fast foods all over Davao city. They also sell grilled chicken for , pork chop , cassava cake .
Barbecue Bossphone: +63 9223796748address: E Quirino Aneune.Five pork barbecue with all the rice you can eat. Cold beers from . Has a garden where you can drink beer at night.
Bankerohan Public Marketaddress: Magallanes StreetLow cost fruits and vegetables.
Kuya Ed Buffetphone: +63 82-2242162address: Magallanes StreetAn all you can eat buffet. Sells drinks.
Tita Dz Kainanphone: +63 82 222-2647address: F. Inigo streetAll you can eat buffet with ice tea.
Twins Restaurantphone: +63 82 227-6686address: F.Inigo streetAll you can eat buffet with ice tea.
Grub Resto cafephone: +63 82 301-8069address: Duterte streetAll you can eat pasta.
Fortune Bread Bakeshoppeaddress: R Magsaysay avenue.There are 3 Fortune Bread bake shops in downtown Davao.
City Triangle Food Courtaddress: Claveria Street
Carlos Food Housephone: +63 9177056898address: F Inigo Street
City foodsphone: +63 82 221-7777address: Ramon Magsaysay Avenue
B Delight Bakeshoppeaddress: San Pedro street.There are B Delight bake shops all over Davao
Mindanao has a large Seventh Day Adventist population. Adventists do not drink and any stores they own will typically not sell alcohol.
Kangaroo Coffee Cophone: +63 82 222-2766, +63 932-724-2309address: Tionko cor. V. Mapa St.Kangaroo is a place dedicated to fresh Mindanao coffee, home-style food, and inspirational literature, in a classical-modern atmosphere. Specialties include Kangabrew (brewed coffee),Durian Mocha Heaven Ice-blended, Mangosteen-Passion Ice-blended,Tsokolatte (native hot chocolate with espresso, KangaYo (fruit & yogurt drinks), Smoked Fish Pasta, Chicken Curry Rice Meal, Creme Brulee, New York Cheesecake, Kanga Nuggets, Kanga Mint Cookies.
phone: +63 82 2286304address: Rizal StreetA great place to hang out. Ask for their Shisha Fries.
phone: +63 82 234-3408address: Guadalupe Village, Lanang, DavaoKnights Cafe offers a choice of local and Western dishes at its pool side bar and restaurant. WiFi and swimming is free if you buy food/drinks. Feast of Fish&Chips to Kinilaw and from traditional English breakfast to pizza. Good place to meet and get lots of local knowledge.
Ellen's Tuna Queenphone: +63 9228147063, +63 9102261849address: South Street Dbp Village, Matina, Davao CityServes the original pritong paksiw buntot ng tuna formerly at Petron Bajada, sinigang silik ng malasugui, beef calderetta, laing, kinilaw (tuna), lechon kawali and tuna sisig. Grilled steaks (lamb chops, beef prime ribs, burger steak) are also served. Try the latest Tuna Sisig na Pizza and the creamy halo-halo at its best.
Basti's Coffeeaddress: Victoria PlazaBasti's is a cafe in Victoria Plaza, with an entrance outside as well as through the food court. They brew great coffee, and they ask you to pick between 'mild' and 'strong'. They also have pastries including an interesting durian cheesecake. Davao is a no-smoking-in-public-places city so smokers might find it useful to know that there is an enclosed and air-conditioned smoking section in Basti's.
British Bar & Deliphone: +63 82-3056471address: 39 Pili Street Nova Tierra Village LanangThe only British pub in Davao.
There is no shortage of accommodations in Davao, ranging from the four-star accommodations of the Marco Polo Davao on Claveria, the Royal Mandaya Hotel and the Apo View Hotel, where Casino Filipino 2 is located, to lodges and inns, pension houses, backpacker hostels all around the city. You can find townhouses or apartments for rent, all for negotiable rates.
There are many places to stay in Davao for under a night.
Sampaguita Tourist Inn (the old one)phone: +63-823004110address: Mt Mayon Street.Single with fan private bathroom and cable TV . Single with A/C private bathroom and cable TV . Add for hot water. Add for a double. Free wifi only on ground floor.
phone: +63 82 300 4040, +63 82 222 2021address: San Pedro StIt offers free Wi-Fi access in every room, free Sun-to-Sun cell phone call, free calls to the US and Canada, hot and cold shower, Air-conditioned rooms with cable TV, telephone are . The My Hotel has security cameras. There are also Single fan rooms with outside bathrooms. Free breakfast.
Sampaguita Tourist Inn (the new one)phone: +63 82-305-8680address: Quirino AvenueVery basic single for , double , triple , family . Add about for A/C. Add another to 200 for hot water. Add another to 300 for coffee table and sofa. Other phone +63 82 302-7645. Free wifi only at ground floor.
phone: +63 82 3019997, +63 9179049032,+63 917 8230514address: 3rd Floor, SPMC Cooperative Building, Southern Philippines Medical Center (aka Davao Medical Center) Compound, BajadaAirconditioned rooms, quiet location, short walk to all modes of public transport, owners and staff are helpful and very friendly. The dormitel occupies the whole third flood of the building (you can ask permission to go up the rooftop for a breath of fresh air). Each no-frills room have four double-decker beds, with common tables and a (very) small cabinet for your more important stuff. Toilets/shower-stalls are clean and well lighted. Separate facilities for men and women. The ground floor of the building is occupied by various establishments: laundry shop (/kg), food center, vendors and a popular Chinese fast food chain. The second floor is occupied by an internet cafe and spa/parlor. Tip: call for reservations well ahead of time as they opten fill-up pretty quickly with various traveller groups.
phone: +63 912 806-6372address: Barangay Katagman, Purok 5, Peñaplata District, Island Garden City of SamalIf you want real peace and quiet, go here. No videokes, guaranteed. You could set up a tent, if you like or get a room in a Bahay Kubo (hut). The owner's wife is a mean cook, specializing in Thai and Indian dishes. There is no in-suite toilet, but the "outhouse" is very clean and has running water. The site is several minutes away on foot from two tourist spots: Moncado's Camp 23 and Balay ni Moncado (Moncado's Whitehouse). You can arrange for a pickup at the Peñaplata Warehouse Club bus stop then take City Island Express Bus from Davao City to Samal Island. Or, you can arrange a pickup from Davao City.
phone: +63 82-3003893address: 5th floor fct Tower 1034 mt Apo StreetA/C dorm beds.
phone: +63 82-2821111address: Cm Retro StreetFan single/double rooms with outside bathrooms. A/C rooms own bathroom and cable TV. New and clean hotel. Has elevator and restaurant.
D Morvie Suitesphone: +63 82 221-0075address: CM Recto Street and San Pedro StreetTwo new D Morvie Suites in Davao city to add to the three in Cagayan de Oro and one in Iligan city. A/C rooms with own bathrooms and cable TV 12/24 hours. New and clean, but small rooms. Free Wi-Fi.
Day Light Innphone: +63 9433807611address: San Pedro StreetClean A/C and fan rooms with outside bathroom.
Evergreen hotelphone: +63 82-2213860address: R Magsaysay AveuneClean fan rooms with own bathrooms. Free Wi-Fi.
phone: +63 82-3210628address: Magallanes Street, corner of Legaspi Street.7 a/c single rooms with own bathrooms and cable TV. 17 a/c twin rooms with own bathroom and cable TV. 6 a/c Matrimonial rooms with own bathroom and cable TV. The GV Hotel Davao has 95 rooms.
El gusto family lodge.phone: +63 82 2273662address: Magallanes streetFan rooms with own bathroom.
Residencia vhila Dormitelphone: +63 82 295-3033address: 83 cm recto street.A/C dorm.
Ayrelios Pensionephone: +63 82 227-8146address: Bolton street.Fan single/double, a/c single/double.
Megiko Dormitel.phone: +63 9328697988address: J Rizal street.A/C double rooms with own bathrooms, cable TV, and free Wi-Fi. 12/24 hours.
Alta Pension Housephone: +63 82 221-1843address: J P Lurel avenue.Single fan with common bathroom, twin fan with common bathroom, a/c twin with common bathroom.
Larous Pension Housephone: +63 82 305-7438address: V liustre streetFan double, a/c double.
House or Tubo Travellers Innphone: +63 9214673312address: 100 Fatima street Kawayan driveA/C double rooms with own hot water bathroom and cable TV. Free Wi-Fi in rooms. Can use the Kitchen to cook.
Littie Pink House Bed and Breakfastaddress: 17 Jacinto ExtensionA/C single/double rooms with own bathroom and cable TV, free breakfast. Also has 12-hour rate.
phone: +63 29552969address: Sta Ana Avenue.Over 100 four-bed A/C dorms with common bathrooms. Has lockers. Has free Wi-Fi.
VBH Innphone: +63 822277369address: W Aquino street AgdaoSingle/double rooms with own bathroom and cable tv. phone in room.
RGH Tourist Inn Hotelphone: +63 84-3710561address: Magsaysay Street KapalongEconomy single/double, deluxe single/double.
phone: +63 9278656970address: Awhag Village Bacaca Road Poblacion district.Six-bed dorms, and small a.c. rooms with cable TV. Free breakfast. Locker .
phone: +63 82-2858274address: Pisces Street Dona Luisa Village EcolandA/C room with own bathroom and cable TV.
Apo View Hotel
Marco Polo Hotel
Because of the work of the local government on strengthening security during the past decade Davao is generally a safe city even for travellers and violent crime is rare except few parts of downtown Davao are unsafe at night. Armed guards and security forces can be seen everywhere, guarding malls, hotels and public events. Your biggest concern should be pickpockets, who are active in downtown Davao and on jeepneys. If you leave Davao proper, please ensure you do your research as to the safety of the area, as the chances of something happening to you, e.g. being kidnapped, rapidly increases if you are a foreigner.
- Indonesia Consulate General. Melati Street Ecoland. phone 2992931.
- Malaysia Consulate General. Bonifacio Street. Phone 2214050.
- Japan Consular office. R Magsaysay avenue. phone 2213100.
- Bureau of Immigration Davao office. JP Laurel Avenue Bajada, over the street from the Victoria Plaza Mall.
- Visa extensions done in one hour or less.
Laundry shopaddress: General Luna StreetWash-dry-fold done within 24 hours.
- Netxpress Duterte Street open 24 hours a day per hour.
- Southern Philippines Medical Center. JP Laurel Avenue. phone 82-2272731. This is a DOH hospital. For you can see a doctor or a dentist.
- Davao Social Hygiene Clinic. RHWC. Emilio Jacinto Street. (Jacinto Health Center) Phone +63 82 222-4187. Free STD and HIV testing and treatment. M-F 8AM-5PM.
- Amesco Drug is a low-cost pharmacy store. There is one on San Pedro Street and one on Quirino Avenue.
- Zenit Dental Centre, 4th floor Gaisano Mall Jp Laurel Avenue, is a clean and has good prices for dental work.
- Digos 66 km south of Davao, 1½ hours by bus
- Bukidnon 4-5 hours by bus
- Cagayan de Oro, bus/van 7-10 hours, depending on weather/traffic/road construction, stops including lunch+diner break.
- General Santos 149 km, 3-4 hours by bus
- Butuan city: 6-7 hours by bus/van
- Cotabato City: 5-6 hours by bus/van
- Mati: 3-4 hours by bus/van
- Bislig: 6 hours by bus
- Tagum: 2 hours by bus ride
- Kidapawan: 3 hours by bus