Kadayawan Festival | Harmony in Diversity
With its wealth of colors, music, dance & indigenous crafts, no doubt why all roads lead to Davao City in August when it celebrates the Kadayawan Festival.
Coming from the word Madayaw meaning good or beautiful, Dabawenyos treat its guests with delightful activities. Local and international tourists gravitate to Davao to experience the Kadayawan Festival vibe. Its timeless interpretations of its region’s culture, heritage, food & people are what make it all exciting.
Kadayawan Festival is the King of Festivals
Kadayawan is a cultural festival that celebrates its bountiful graces. Its people, the Ovu-Manuvo, Ata, Matigsalug, Tagabawa, Klata-Djangan, Kagan, Maguindanao, Maranao, Sama & Tausug are the stars of this gathering. Davao’s distinct character, prosperous economy and solid governance have made it a natural attraction to become a popular migration hub. Over the years, this multi-cultural co-existence had grown to shape what is now the cosmopolitan Davao.
The highlight of Kadayawan Festival is the exciting street dancing competition. It is a stylized interpretation of its indigenous dances and music. Early in the morning, the streets are flooded with dancers and musicians. They are clad in colorful structural garments dangling with brass bells, beads and horsetails. To the sound of the debakan, agong, kulintang and other bamboo instruments, they move in synchronized motions & surprising stunts.
The Dabawenyos also express their fearless statements of artistry in the floral float parade. It showcases the bounty of its harvest of local blooms and fruits formed into moving sculptures. From ideation to execution this parade is nothing short of awesome spectacle.
Davao truly prides itself as the land of many great things. It is home to the King of Birds, the Philippine Eagle & the Waling-Waling as the Queen of Orchids. Durian, acclaimed as the King of Fruits also abounds in this region. It has the largest city and the highest peak in the Philippines. Truly, Davao is the national host of the King of Festivals!
Experience these wonderful excesses of bounty, color and traditions. Live the Kadayawan Festival vibe!
How to Get There
- There are domestic flights to Davao City from Manila, Cebu, Cagayan de Oro, Iloilo and Bacolod. International airlines also fly direct to Davao.
- Check airline schedules and tariffs at (Philippine Airlines) www.philippineairlines.com (Cebu Pacific Air) www.cebupacificair.com (Air Asia) www.airasia.com
- Davao can be reached by land. If you’re driving, take the Manila-Bicol route via Quezon Province. Travel all the way to Matnog in Sorsogon. Take the barge to Allen, Samar then Liloan-Surigao. From there, drive down to Agusan, then Compostela Valley and Tagum in Davao del Norte.
- Bus services via Philtranco (+632 8518078) are also available. However, this takes longer time because it follows the public commuter routes.
- Land trip takes more than 2 days depending on the your time of arrival in Matnog, Allen & Liloan where you take the barge as they sail on appointed schedules.
- Call +632 5287000 for complete sailing schedule of WG&A Superferry.
- This route takes 2 days.
Where to Stay
There are a lot of hotel accommodations available in Davao. The following are recommendations according to the type of accommodation you prefer.
- Marco Polo Hotel Davao (+63 82 2210888)
- Waterfront Insular Hotel (+63 82 2218881)
- Grand Regal Hotel (+63 82 2350888)
- Apo View Hotel (+63 82 2216430)
- Microtel Inn and Suites (+63 82 2332333)
- Royal Mandaya Hotel (+63 82 2258888)
- Hotel Esse (+63 82 2273773)
- Blueberry Hotel (+63 82 2275555)
- Hotel Vicente (+62 82 2957053)
- Tropika Hotel (+63 82 2343331)
- Casa Leticia (+63 82 2240501)
- Bagobo House (+63 82 2224444)
- D’Leonor Hotel (+63 82 2211160)
- Linmarr Hotel (+63 82 2212915)
- C5 Dormitel (+63 82 2286186)
- Sampaguita Hotel (+63 82 2272958)
- Sunflower Hotel (+63 82 2215011)
- We R Inn (+63 82 2279328)
- Ponce Suites Gallery Hotel (+63 82 2279070)
Bed and Breakfast
- La Piscine (+63 82 2211155)
Where to Eat
Good restaurants are not hard to find in Davao and choices are just as many as you can think of. I’m personally recommending the following:
- Picobello Ristorante Italiano (Gaisano South Mall, Ilustre St.)
- Swiss Deli and Restaurant (Lanang)
- La Piscine Pool Bar & Cafe (Palm Village, Obrero)
- Bagnetian Kitchen (Palma Gil St., Obrero)
- Marco Polo Hotel (CM Recto St.)
- Waterfront Insular Hotel (Lanang)
- Yellow Fin Seafood Restaurant (Quimpo Blvd.)
- Ahfat Seafood Restaurant (Victoria Plaza Mall)
- Roadhouse Cafe (SM-Quimpo Blvd)
Must-Tries & Souvenirs
Never leave Davao without trying these:
- Durian in Magsaysay Park
- Pomelo and Mangosteen in Bangkerohan Market
- Picobello’s wood-fired pizza
- Various handicrafts and handwoven fabrics at Aldevinco (CM Recto St)
Side Trips & Other Sights to See
Explore Davao more!
- Samal Island (this can be crossed in 15 minutes)
- Crocodile Farm
- Eden Nature Park
- Wakeboarding in Deca
- Philippine Eagle Center
NOTE: Davao City strictly enforces the No Smoking Policy all around the metro. Please look for the designated Smoking Area before lighting one.