South Cotabato is one of the places in Mindanao that both local and foreign tourists return to every year, despite the security threats that have clouded over the island in the past few years. Like other regions in Mindanao, South Cotabato capitalizes on its rich and beautiful nature. Its fertile soil has paved the way for migration and agricultural industries as well.
Dubbed the “Land of the Dreamweavers”, South Cotabato is home to the T’Boli tribe, known for their art of weaving that bases its patterns on their dreams. With lakes, waterfalls, vast plantations and well-preserved traditions, South Cotabato opens the doors to the picturesque southern region of Mindanao. That said, here are a few South Cotabato tourist spots and activities you can enjoy.
Lake Sebu is one of the top tourist attractions in South Cotabato, and the town where it’s located is named after it.
One of the town’s three lakes, Lake Sebu is more than just a tourist destination; in fact, it’s a major watershed in South Cotabato. It’s also paved the way for a progressive agricultural scene and is an economic ace in the region.
There are several restaurants located around the lake where tourists can enjoy local dishes, especially those made with tilapia. You can also enjoy a calm and relaxing boat ride to see the fish pens as well as the verdant forests of Lake Sebu. If you’re a peace-loving traveler, you can opt to spend a night or two at any of the affordable accommodations nearby.
With its lush forests and largely unspoiled beauty, South Cotabato is one of the best places to enjoy some well-deserved solitude. If you want to completely detach from the hustle and bustle of city life, then take a trek to Lake Holon.
People who have visited the place before claim that this lake is not just one of the cleanest, but it’s also one of the most beautiful.
The lake is the crater of Mt. Parker, formed during its eruption centuries ago. Considered sacred among those of the T’Boli tribe, the trek to the lake takes about 5 hours, and there are two trails. When you reach the end and catch a glimpse of this 300-hectare (742-acre) lake with deep blue waters, you’ll feel it’s well worth all the trouble it took to reach.
Some of the activities you can enjoy here include swimming, kayaking and camping.
The Pineapple Plantation
Mindanao is home to different fruit plantations, and the pineapple plantation in Polomolok City is one such example that’s also a must-see stop. Covering more than 180,000 hectares, it’s a recognizable area as you pass by, with the imposing Mt. Matutum as its background.
Managed by DOLE Philippines, the plantation is one of the largest in the world. A tour of this place will have you walking along the vast fields filled with pointed leaves and golden fruit. You’ll also learn more about how these pineapples are cultivated and harvested.
Aside from trying out some of the resorts in South Cotabato, you can also see the above destinations along the way. If you’re including all of these in your itinerary, make sure to plan your trip well so you can enjoy yourself without worrying about the next leg of the trip.
A lot of people right now are aware that Davao City is a bustling metropolis, but that’s hardly a good enough reason for tourists to travel to the area. To get the most out of your trip, you need to go a little bit farther than just Davao City – you need to head into the Davao region, in fact.
The region includes the city and the Davao Gulf as well as the Compostela Valley, Davao Occidental, Davao Oriental, Davao del Sur and Davao del Norte. With that said, here are some of the destinations to consider for Philippine beach holidays when you want fun under the sun.
The Island Garden City of Samal
Located along the Davao Gulf, this holiday destination is known to be the largest resort island in the Philippines. It has almost 70 resorts to choose from, including the most famous ones – Pearl Farm Beach Resort and Paradise Beach Resort. You’ll have absolutely no problem finding the right accommodation here for you.
The one thing all the resorts have in common are white-sand beaches and the deep, clear, blue ocean. Beyond that, Samal Island has something for everybody, on any budget.
Dahican Beach in Mati, Davao Oriental
Seven kilometers of white sand beach confronts first-time visitors to the “skim boarding capital of Mindanao.” Just be careful when you visit this place, however. Why? It’s because the waves are high and the currents are a bit too strong. Still, it’s a haven for anyone that likes a challenge in the water, and peace on land.
Aliwagwag Falls Eco Park in Cateel, Davao Oriental
If you love the water but hate the salt, Davao has the Aliwagwag Falls Eco Park. It’s made up of a series of 84 waterfalls that spill into the Cateel River amidst a lush rainforest you can admire using the monkey bridge. It’s a fully developed tourism destination, however, so you can enjoy your nature stint in comfort.
Matin-ao Inland Resort in New Corella, Davao del Norte
Bask in the natural spring waters that empty out into the numerous Matin-ao Inland Resort swimming pools. The children would love the slides here, just remember to keep a close eye on them so they won’t get hurt or anything. Of course, you, the parents, can also have a great and wonderful time here as well.
Banana Beach in Tagum City
Banana Beach is the only beach that’s found inside of a banana plantation in Tagum City. But you have to admit, it can’t be anything but a unique experience to say the least.
Davao grows some of the best fruits in the country, but this place is definitely not one for monkeys to lurk in. Plus, this place has first-rate accommodations and amenities, so head on down here now!
So, there you have it. These are just some of the best beach holidays Philippines destinations in the Davao region. Just remember the basics when it comes to planning for your beach trip for you to avoid any disasters along the way.