Davao City, Davao del Sur, Philippines

Travel Guide: Visiting Davao on a Budget

Sometimes traveling means spending a lot of money to others. Well, that's what I also thought when I was still not into traveling. When we went to Iloilo and Capiz last year, I learned that you can actually limit yourself and be wise in spending your money. So when we went to Davao, I tried to budget my money as much as I could. Haha! I went there with my Youth For Christ Tagaytay family. We booked our flight last November for only 2,300 pesos, roundtrip, at Clark International Airport.

We left Tagaytay at around 3:30 in the morning, April 3 and arrived at Clark at around 7am. Our flight was still at 1:45pm. Haha! You can't be sure with the Manila traffic so we agreed to leave super early. Malate ka na sa lahat wag lang sa flight mo, girl. Haha! We arrived in Davao past 4pm. Travel time was 1hr and 45min. We just ate dinner and rested since we were out and traveled almost the whole day. 

We checked in at El Bajada Hotel. We choose to stay here since it just a few blocks away from the University of Southeast Philippines which is the venue of this year's ICON of the Youth For Christ. It's also a cheap but a good hotel.

Photo from Google

Photo from Google
The three of us stayed at the family room which costs 1,850 per night, inclusive of buffet breakfast. Not bad, right? There are a lot of budget hotels in Davao that you can choose.


We availed 4KV Travel and Tours' Davao City Tour. It is just 2,500 pesos for 10 hours and 4 destinations of our choice. Our first stop was Davao Crocodile Park. We were supposed to go to the Museum but it was closed temporarily. 

The entrance fee was 350 pesos for each person. It already includes the entrance for the Crocodile Park, Tribu K’Mindanawan and the Butterfly Garden. 

You can feed the crocodiles, ostrich, and rabbits. Price varies. For the rabbits, it is just 20 pesos.

Lolong's replica. Same size.

We were lucky enough to see the peacock spread its feathers.

Tribu K’Mindanawan is known for its fire shows and showing the rich culture of various indigenous groups in Mindanao. Unfortunately, there was no scheduled show when we went there but we explored the place.

The Butterfly Garden was a few meters away from the Crocodile Park. It's a good thing we hired a van. 

The second stop is the Japanese Tunnel. There is a 50 pesos entrance fee. It is not just a tourist destination anymore. They turned it to a resort and hotel which is on the upper part of the place. 

TIP: The tunnel can be really muddy because of the water coming from its walls. Of course, I didn't know that. I wore my white shoes. Oo, pinaglaban ko talaga yung white shoes ko. Haha! 

Our third stop is the Shrine of the Holy Infant Jesus of Prague. We went to the pasalubong center before we went here pala. I just didn't have photos. We bought Durian candies and Pomelo. One box of Pomelo costs 400 pesos (5kilos). The candies range from 35 to 50 pesos.

And for our fourth and last stop, PARADISE ISLAND which is in Samal Island! :)

Our driver dropped us at the bay going to the resort. The fare costs 20 pesos per person. It was just a few minutes away from the city. This place is so amazing!

For our third day, we just stayed in the hotel because Karissa had to attend to some of her clients. In the evening after the talk and session, we went to Roxas Night Market. I feel like it is a kilometer in length or even longer. Haha! We commuted going there, 8 pesos jeepney fare. Going back to the hotel, we hired a pedicab, 20 pesos per person.

For our fourth day, we spend our morning packing because we moved to the Waterfront Insular Hotel. You may check my separate blog post for it.

While waiting for them, I decided to go out and be adventurous. I do really go out alone especially when it is my first time in that place. I went to Jack's Ridge, another famous tourist destination in Davao. It was 15 to 20 minutes away from El Bajada Hotel. I took a taxi since I am not familiar with the place even though it was already past 7pm. One way costs around 160 pesos to 180 pesos. I don't think it is advisable to commute since it is going uphill and I don't think there are jeepneys there.

There were so many people because it was a Saturday night. Most of them are with their families and friends while I was alone. Lol! You can see the Davao city lights at night and the Davao view during the day. I first went to Karlo's Coffee Shop because I was craving for cakes.

I was surprised to see that they have this Jack's Ridge Love Locks.

I decided to sit down and listen to the live band at Kai's Bar & Grill with the city lights view. They have an entrance fee of 50 pesos inclusive of one San Mig Light or San Mig Pale Pilsen. I don't really drink but I made this night an exemption. What a chill night! Haha! I went back to the hotel past 10pm, I think. 


  • Jaywalking and littering are strictly prohibited by the government. Use the pedestrian lane or ask the local where you can cross the street.
  • Use sunblock when going out. The weather in Davao can really be sunny and warm during the day.
  • Always bring your ID with you.
  • There are a lot of restaurants and karinderya in Davao. There were times that we only pay 40 to 60 pesos per meal with drinks. 
  • Most people of Davao are courteous and friendly. They are also simple and humble. Hands down!
  • It is considered to be one of the safest city here in the Philippines. Policemen are always around and they really patrol even at night. 

There are so many places that I wanted to visit but was not able to because of our schedule. At least, it gave me more reason to go back to Davao. On this trip, I realized that I like to travel not just because of this blog or just for photos. I travel because I want to know what is there outside my hometown. I want to know their culture, their history and their way of living. This is just my first travel for this year and I am forever thankful to God for this kind of experience. Traveling doesn't always to have to be expensive.

Til we meet again Davao,


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