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A region nature has truly gifted

HARDLY is there any mention of Davao in major publications as a must-go major destination. This denied and deprives Manila readers of the opportunities to experience and savor the sites and amenities the Davao region and Davao City can offer.

For the record, Davao region owns two Guinness World Records: the Monfort Bat Sanctuary at the Island Garden City of Samal which hosts a large colony of 2.3 million Rousette fruit-eating bats, and the most number of people simultaneously blowing party horns during its annual Torotot Festival. Of course, there were two other registered ‘durian’ attempts for the Guinness records in the past decade, but both attempts failed.

The region, moreover, is home to the world’s rarest orchid and national flower, the waling-waling, and the Rafflesia mira, a specie of the world’s largest bloom found in Maragusan, Compostela Valley Province. Going east, the Mount Hamigitan of Davao Oriental, a dwarf forest, is a UNESCO world heritage site. Elsewhere, an adventurer can visit and view the world’s largest Rosary at Tagum City, which has beads carved from Philippine ironwood. Each bead is 32 kilos and overall the Rosary weighs more than two tons!

Two key economic landmarks that often find front-page treatment in business publications are Tadeco Farm, the world’s largest contiguous banana plantations found in Tagum City, which covers nearly 10,000 hectares, and the gold-rush Mt. Diwata in Monkayo, Compostela Valley, which was predicted to yield US$25 billion in gold during its lifetime.

Of course, world-class tourism attractions abound. In Samal Island, the famous Pearl Farm Resort owned by the Floirendos remains the region’s most expensive destination. Under development is the world-class, 37-hectare Dusit-branded Lubi Plantation in Kopiat Island, Compostela Valley. The billion-peso project will shortly host the Lubi Beach Club and Dusit Thani Resort Hotel.

Beyond its regular amenities, Davao City is known for respectful drivers who give commuters their exact change.

Liquor-drinking in the city is disallowed an hour past midnight, and videoke sing-along is discouraged after ten in the evening, except on special occasions.

Nature has indeed gifted the Davao region with attractions that make Davao a coveted experience. Not only is it safe to move around without fear of being mugged, its metro also offers the hospitality and the food treats that are uniquely tribal and Dabawenyo. (Johnny Dayang)