Adventures and Sports
Visit 10 Amazing Spots On The Outskirts Of Samal & Talikud Islands Via Habal-Habal
Ida Damo | Mar 23, 2017
My balikbayan friends, Leo and Ria, are in town and a first-timer, Thad, has been added to the group and so early morning on a Saturday, we got ready for an inland tour of the Island Garden City of Samal. We hopped on a ferry from Sasa Port in Davao City for a boat ride that lasted less than 10 minutes. Upon reaching Samal, we rode a habal-habal to our resort, dropped off our things at the Punta del Sol Beach Resort, lathered on sunblock, wore caps, and then got back to our habal-habals for the adventour of mainland Samal.
For this trip, we visited Canibad Beach, Hagimit Falls, Sabang Cliff Diving, Blue Bird Viewdeck, and Monfort Bat Cave.
Our first stop was Sabang for cliff diving. The guides said it was a 200-foot drop though diving from that height is no longer allowed. The only jump allowed is from 30-20 feet, so we opted to just take photos.
Next was Canibad Beach since it was the farthest from our resort. The ride on the rough road was tough and you had to go down a steep cliff to get to the beach. But once you get to the beach and dip in its cool blue waters, your tiredness melts away.
On our way back, we had to stop by the Blue Bird viewdeck to take photos as it has a stunning view of Malipano Island and the Davao Gulf and then it was off to Hagimit Falls.
Hagimit Falls is a popular tourist attraction of Samal Island as it has multiple tiers of cold water that really refreshes the traveler.
Next stop was the Monfort Bat Cave which holds the record for the largest population of Geoffrey’s Rousette Fruit Bats. Its “mama bat”, Ms. Norma Monfort was the 2011 recipient of the Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund Hero for her works with the bats.
We waited for the sunset for the bats to rise but the long day in the hot sun proved to be tiring for the group so we headed off to our resort to rest for the next day’s Talikud Island inland tour.
Sunday morning, we headed off to Kaputian in mainland Samal for the less than 15-minute boat ride to cross to Talikud Island.
From Sta. Cruz port, it is going to be a 3-hour Inland tour on a habal-habal. There are 7 stops on the tour but we opted for just 5.
First stop was the Punta del Sol Mangrove Sanctuary which has a walkway that snakes through mangroves and on to the parola jutting out to the sea. Some trees were already a hundred years old, but some were just sprouting from the ground. If you go snorkeling, an abundant marine life awaits you as the area is also a coral and fish sanctuary.
This is also where the ticket is issued for the tour. The ticket would ensure that we would not be paying entrance fees for each destination as it is already included in the PhP350/person tour fee. Each destination would have a stamp so we could keep track of the stops.
The next stop was a bat sanctuary for fruit bats that just been recently opened to the public. A trail of dead bats led to its discovery and a new bat mama was born.
Passing by Talikud’s Friendship Road is a must as branches from parallel trees that meet in the middle of the road forming a canopy for motorists and passersby. During the hot journey, this was a respite.
For the beach part of the tour, we headed off to La Isla Bonita. It is a long stretch of white sand beach with quaint cottages near the beach and on top of the cliffs. Even on a Sunday, you can still have a good portion of the beach and sea to yourself, making it a beach goers’ nirvana.
On our way to our last stop, we dropped by the Giant Balete Tree where Leo and Thad had a grand time climbing the tree and posing for photos. The stories behind the tree are stuff of legends. Then on to the last stop---Baga Cave.
Baga Cave’s reputation of being a tunnel that connects Talikud to Davao City awakened Leo’s curiosity and so we saved it for last so he could explore it.
By the time they emerged from the cave, it was already 3 in the afternoon and so we had to rush back to our resort in mainland Samal. Leo wanted to try the crocodile lechon at the Davao Crocodile Park which was an hour away.
It was an adventure and fun-filled weekend that Leo, Ria, Thad, and I enjoyed to the max even with the scorching sun. I have sunburn on my forehead and arms as a reminder to strictly re-lather sunblock as often as I can.
You can also try this adventour in Samal and Talikud next time you are in Davao on a weekend.
How to get there:
Samal and Talikud can be reached from Davao City by boat from the passenger/barge ferry in Sasa 11. Passenger ferries and barges travel every 30 minutes from Davao City to Samal.
Talikud is an hour by boat from Sta. Ana port or just 10 minutes from Kaputian in mainland Samal. For inland package tours, contact www.talikudislandtours.com.
Major airlines fly daily from Manila and Cebu to Davao City.
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