Davao, Philippines - Stein Travel
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Davao

Davao is the gateway to the southern Philippines, a hub of commerce, industry and transportation (sea and air) in the southern Mindanao region. Although as an urban metropolis Davao has little to recommend it, the attraction of the city is its accessibility to a beautiful surrounding rural landscape of hills and fertile valleys, dominated by the massive 9,692ft (2,954m) Mount Apo, a dormant volcano that is the Philippine's highest mountain peak. Among the valleys live the ancestral tribes of the Philippines, like the Bagobo, Manobo, Mandaya and Bilaan, with their rich and colourful cultural heritage, ethnic art and handcrafts.

Davao is centre of the Philippines fruit- and flower-growing region, and an annual festival (the Kadawayan Festival) is held in August to celebrate the bounty of the fields and the different tribal cultures. The region is also home to the endangered Philippine Eagle, and the rare Vanda Sanderiana orchid. Like the rest of the Philippines, of course, the Mindanao region and its many islands also offer thousands of tropical beaches and dive sites, most accessible only by the most intrepid of adventure travellers.

Information & Facts

Climate

Davao has a tropical marine climate and its weather is characterised by a uniform distribution of rainfall, temperature and humidity. Temperatures generally range between 75°F (24°C) and 90°F (32°C) year-round and, due to its geographical position, Davao does not experience the typhoons which plague surrounding areas.

Language

The official language of the Philippines is Filipino, but English is widely spoken. Tagalog is the most predominant of the many dialects or local languages spoken throughout the islands.

Money

The currency of the Philippines is the Peso (PHP), which is divided into 100 centavos. Major credit cards are widely accepted in the cities and tourist destinations. Banks do not always accept travellers cheques, but a receipt of purchase is useful. ATMs are available in the major cities. US dollars are widely accepted in Manila and other tourist areas and are the easiest currency to exchange; otherwise Euros and Pounds Sterling can also be exchanged in banks and hotels. Banks open from 9am to 3pm, Monday to Friday, but their ATMs are open 24 hours. It is best to carry pesos when travelling outside of major centres.

Time

Local time is GMT +8.

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