Samal Island, from Island to Highlands

Samal Island is a very special place to me and my family. When we were growing up, papa’s work takes him to Samal almost everyday. That’s where most of their livestock come from.Twelve years ago, I started selling Samal properties for a local company in Davao. I sold probably a total of 200 lots which gave me my 1st van, a Mitsubishi L300. It was an award coming from my boss for a job well done, so to speak. It also gave me the chance to own my 1st house, which my parents are enjoying now.This time, I am now selling our properties. On credit, if I may add. 🙂 We offer 3 year term @ zero interest payment scheme on a straight monthly basis.

Needless to say, Samal  has been very good to us.

So I will make a tribute to the island who has helped me and my entire family for the past 3 decades.

The Island Garden City of Samal is composed of 31,000 hectares more or less. It is divided into 4 districts namely:  Babak, Penaplata (where the City Mayor holds his office), Kaputian and Talicud Island, which is separated from the mainland.

Although, it’s only 10 minutes away from Davao City, the island is a part of Davao Del Norte.

How To Go There:

From Davao City, one has an option to do the following:

a) Take the bus, which is also owned by the ferry company. The terminal is beside Magsaysay Park
in R. Magsaysay Avenue. The fare ranges from P25.00 – P60.00 .

b) Take a jeepney to Km. 11 Sasa. Then walk towards the passenger port. There are boats (locally known as “Lantsa”).  Fare is Php12.00 per head.

c) Take your own or rented car to Samal by way of a ferry boat. The port is also in Km. 11 Sasa. Ferry Schedule starts at 6 a.m. and ends at 10:00 p.m. with 15-20 minutes interval, during low season. During peak season, the waiting period can be 1-2 hours depending on how long the line is. 🙂  Actual travel time is only 10minutes.

Car / Van fee is Php270.00 including the driver and 1 passenger. More than that, they charge P10.00 per head.

What To Do:

Samal Island is famous for its white sand beaches and crystal clear waters. There are so many beach resorts scattered all over the place.

Then, there’s the bat cave in Babak, which is the home of millions of fruit bats.  If you don’t mind the strong smell of the bats’ dung, then you’d be amazed when you watch them fly. 🙂

We have diving spots, for those who want to go diving. Just go to Sta. Ana Pier and there are diving offices there.

Samal is called a garden city because of the “garden under the water“.  On the 4th birthday of my nephew Marco , we went to Kaputian Beach Park. Then we rented a boat for P700.00 and went to the vanishing island in Lidao , Kaputian. That was one of the most amazing experiences I had. It was low tide so the water was just ankle deep. So we were able to walk on a long strip of land in the middle of the sea! The corals are so beautiful, I couldn’t stop taking pictures. hehehe…

When we landed at the vanishing island.
Walking in the middle of the sea… Nice right?! 🙂

Island hopping is also one of the best ways to enjoy the island. Just make sure that you do that when it’s not “habagat” time or you would hate the trip because of the waves. 🙂 Also, remember to come back before 3pm. The boat tend to sway more because of the wave even if the weather is fine…  You should not miss this when you go to Samal. It’s so beautiful you’d be amazed at God’s creation…

Beautiful rock formation…
The wishing island.
Fishing Boat
The undeveloped white sand beach..
Private beach houses..
Fish Cage. They grow milkfish or “bangus” here. 🙂
PLACES TO STAY:                                                                
The first resort you will see upon reaching Babak, by way of a bus or Ferry boat, is Camp Holiday. It is only more than a year old and is owned by the bus and ferry company.
If you head towards Limao, Blue Jazz resort is there. Then the famous Paradise Island. A lot of people thought that it’s an island in Samal. But no, it’s not. It’s just the name of the resort. 🙂 Then, there’s Costa Marina. As you continue travelling, you’ll reach Catagman. Resorts like Mayumi , Bali-bali and Punta Del Sol are there.
As you continue, you’ll reach Brgy. Cawag. This area is near the beach view lots we’re selling. You’ll find Maxima Aqua Fun. If you want adventure, try their canopy walk! Or their water slide that will take you directly to the beach. 🙂 Like Pearl Farm, you can jetski , rent a banana boat, do snorkelling, etc. Entrance Fee is Php200.00 per head.
The best beaches in Samal is in Kaputian. That’s why our family chooses to go there when we want to go to the beach. I love Kaputian Beach Park. If you’re on a day trip and wants to do picnic on the beach, this would suffice. It’s a government operated resort so it is cheap. P10.00 per head, the last time we were there. The  picnic cottage is about P80.00 .  You can bring a tent and camp beside the beach or bring a hammock, tie between the trees and there you go. Relax to the max! 🙂
They also have cottages and a tree house for overnight stay.
Kaputian Beach Park.
You’ll also find the world famous Pearl Farm Resort in Kaputian.
Matt and Blaire at the Infinity Pool of Pearl Farm.
There’s Hof Gorei, a german owned resort. I’ve never been there yet. But I heard that their infinity pool and sunken bar is also very nice. 🙂
If you want something cooler, then visit Hagimit Falls, by all means. 🙂 It’s cool waters is soothing and refreshing!  Sorry, I have no photos of Hagimit anymore. Those are part of the photo collection I lost when John’s hard drive crashed.  Hagimit was developed by the local government now. So it’s cleaner and well-maintained.

There’s another attractive waterfall in Samal known as Tagbaobo Falls. But this one is at the back of Samal, facing Davao Oriental. You can rent a motorcycle or bring a 4×4 vehicle because the road is rough. It is undeveloped but its untouched beauty makes it more appealing and beautiful.

For those who like mountain climbing, Puting Bato Peak might be of interest to you.

I’ve read that there are 71 caves in Samal Island, so you can do spelunking as well.  Maybe one of these days, I’ll have to check one and write about it. 🙂  The easiest to go to is the cave owned by the Monforts. It houses millions of fruit bats. They usually come out before 6pm to look for food. They’re asleep during daytime so you can take photos all you want then.
Samal maybe small, but it’s a very busy island.  There are so many things you can do, so you won’t get bored. From Island to Highlands, indeed!
So come and enjoy! 🙂UPDATE:   I had the chance to visit Hagimit Falls again last month. Wow, the place looks so different from what I remember! It’s more beautiful and developed now. I just hope that its commercialization will not affect its natural beauty. 🙂 To the LGU’s , congratulations for a job well done! Please read my  blog about it here –
                                                                          Lea C. Walker



About leawalkerblog

Businesswoman. Realtor. Photographer. Traveler. Blogger.
This entry was posted in Babak, beach resorts, blue jazz, camp holiday, Kaputian, kaputian beach park, lots for sale, My Travels, paradise island, pearl farm, Penaplata, Punta del Sol, Samal Island, Talicud and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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