With summer just a few weeks away, many of you must already be thinking where to spend your vacation with family or friends.
But if you are looking for both relaxation and adventure, then Davao City might just be the perfect place for you.
As a local, I can say that tourists can have pretty much lots of things to do here. We have a variety of restaurants where you can indulge on good food, beautiful beaches just a few minutes away from the city or mountain resorts where you can just simply enjoy nature.
One such place is Eden Nature Park and Resort. It is located in Toril, south of the city, and about an hour and a half’s drive from downtown, depending on the traffic. If you don’t have your own vehicle, you can either hire a taxi, rent a car or van, or take public transport (Ride a jeepney bound for Toril and ask the driver to drop you off at Mercury Drug. There are lots of motorcycles at that stop which can take you to the resort.)
Eden Nature Park and Resort is an 80-hectare man-made forest planted with pine trees, fruit trees, shrubs, vegetables and flowers, making it perfect for both weary and adventure-seeking souls. Since the property is huge and has a variety of amenities, you will never run out of things to do. There are two types of entrance fees here which already includes meals: P200 for adults and P170 for children for snacks (served at 9 am and 2 pm respectively), and P520 for adults and P330 for kids for a buffet lunch.
If you are going there for a day tour, it is highly advisable to come early so you can fully enjoy what the resort has to offer. When we went there last December, we arrived shortly after lunch and here’s a list of what we were able to do:
We were given a free stub at the Fishing Village that day but entrance there usually costs P40 per person. That already includes equipment rental. You pay an additional P200 to P220 for every kilo of tilapia or hito caught. If you only paid for snacks, perhaps you might want to have your catch cooked there for your lunch or dinner for an additional fee.
2.Guided Shuttle Tour
Since my husband’s grandmother was with us during that trip, we availed of their guided shuttle tour (P120 per person) so she can see the various attractions the resort has to offer. This is also highly recommended when you only have limited time since the tour takes about 45 minutes only.
It was peak season when we went there so we only had about 5-10 minutes to explore and have our picture taken at every stop-over. Each group though is limited to about 10 to 15 people and the guides often volunteer to take your group picture.
We ate our snacks at one of their restaurants and our 82-year old Lola got to rest too
4.A visit at their aviary
They have different species of birds at their aviary where you can also acquaint yourself with different species of local and imported trees such as teak.
This is their “adventure” area where guests can enjoy the Skyrider (think zipline) for P150 or their newest attraction, the Skycycle (bicycling in the air, anyone?) for P200.
My brother and sister wanted to try the rides but so many people are still queuing up and they were about to close in an hour. We ended up watching the people taking the rides instead and had photo ops with Lola.
Other things you can do at the resort:
If time is on your side and you’re up for a long walk under the cover of huge trees, you can explore the resort at your own pace and have unlimited pictures taken at their various attractions. The staff will provide you with the resort’s map when you register and pay the entrance fees.
Located near the restaurants, this is similar to a Skyrider but with this one, you are suspended above the air for just about 2 feet only. This is a ride both kids and adults can enjoy for free.
The resort has a pool and entrance fee there costs P80 for adults and P55 for kids
If you hadn’t ridden a horse in your life, then this is the perfect time. Try horseback riding at Eden for only P85.
Eden Nature Park and Resort also has cottages where you can spend the night or relax for a few days. During off seasons, they often offer 50% discounts on room accommodations. For rates and other information, you can check their website at www.edennaturepark.com.ph
Text by Ruby Thursday More-Bacongco