The Island Garden City of Samal is a vacationer’s paradise. Samal Island, as many locals call it, is only accessible via ferry from the mainland. Fly into Davao International Airport and get a taxi to the ferry. Private crafts, water taxis and barge ferry’s which carry automobiles can be taken from the SaSa or Santa Ana Wharf. Several resorts offer boats which drop you direct to your vacation destination, be sure to tell the taxi which resort you have chosen so he will know where to drop you.
The island itself consists of 30,130 hectares of land with over 118 kilometers of coastline to enjoy. The Sama tribe who first inhabited these small clusters of islands is the reason today it is called Samal. The Visayans used the word in the wrong manner and in the end the “L” was added, giving it the current use of the name Samal. The war in the Pacific changed the entire region as it was overtaken by the Japanese for four years. After fierce fighting the island was given back to the people and a new beginning was undertaken.
Samal has some of the largest cluster of resorts within one district in all the Philippines. World famous Pearl Farm resort lies near the bay of Penaplatta and some 70 other coastal resorts adorn this region. Several resorts are built inland and without a doubt choosing just one will be the hardest decision of all. The numbers of resorts are growing quickly due to the demand to see and visit the beauty of Samal.
Be sure to visit the falls of Hagimit not far from Penaplatta. This deep gorge of flowing fresh water is a cool place to sit in the multitude of waterfalls which surround the area. The resort huts are built into the cliffs and beds of the area which make this stop a unique place to stay. Hagimit Falls is a must see destination and one time will beckon you to return over and over again.
A Samal favorite, the famous Monfort Bat Cave, is listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as being the largest colony of fruit bats around the globe. The cave has brought about rare and unique understandings of this type of bat and their importance to humans. For those a bit squeamish this trip might be best viewed from afar but for the adventurous type this stop will amaze you with over 2 million bats in one place.
Samal Island has a rich history of marine life. Scuba diving and snorkeling are a must when visiting the region. Famous spots such as Mansud Wall and Talikud Island are havens for those that love seeing life in the sea. These areas are a plethora of corals and multi colored fish which call the warm Davao Bay their home. While in the area try to spot the famous Vanishing Island, which is only viewable at low tide and often enjoyed by the locals.
There is so much to see and do while in Samal that taking a trip here is an adventure in itself. From the wild animals of Paradise Resort to the sleepy white sands of Kaputian, there is truly no place so beautiful then this. Come to Samal Island for the adventure, live the history and find your way back to enjoy it all over again.