SAMAL ISLAND DAVAO Guide [ Island Garden City of Samal ]


Samal Island, Davao Travel Guide, Resorts, Beaches  [ Island Garden City of Samal ]


Hey there, my fellow Happy Trippers! I’m excited to share with you my ultimate guide to Samal Island in Davao. After receiving numerous inquiries about my trip, I thought it would be helpful to put together this comprehensive travel guide just for you.


Samal Island, also known as the Island Garden City of Samal, is a true gem located in the province of Davao del Norte in the Davao Region of the Philippines. It’s comprised of Samal Island itself and the smaller Talikud Island, both nestled in the pristine waters of the Davao Gulf. Being part of the Mindanao Island group, it’s no wonder this place offers a captivating blend of natural beauty and thrilling adventures.

One of the best things about Samal Island is its proximity to Davao City. With just a short 10 to 15-minute boat ride covering a distance of two kilometers, you can easily make your way from the bustling city to this tropical paradise. Personally, I always make it a point to include a side trip to Samal Island whenever I visit Davao City. It’s a perfect getaway from the urban hustle and bustle.

As the largest resort city in the Philippines, Samal Island boasts a plethora of breathtaking beaches along its shores and picturesque hills dominating its landscape. Whether you’re a beach lover or an adventure seeker, this place has something to offer for everyone. From pristine sandy stretches to vibrant marine reefs, you’ll find plenty of beach resorts and tourist attractions to cater to your desires.

Exploring the crystal-clear waters is a must-do activity here. Dive into the tempting waters and witness the vibrant underwater world through scuba diving or snorkeling. Immerse yourself in the beauty of marine life and discover the colorful coral gardens that adorn the island’s coastline. It’s a true paradise for water enthusiasts.

If you’re seeking a thrilling adventure, why not try your hand at some exciting water sports? Get your adrenaline pumping with activities like windsurfing, kayaking, jet-skiing, and even banana boat rides. The options are endless, and the experiences will leave you craving for more.

But Samal Island isn’t just about the beaches and water activities. Venture into the heart of the island, and you’ll be rewarded with lush greenery and majestic hills. Trek through the scenic trails and embrace the serenity of nature. Don’t forget to visit Talikud Island, located southwest of the main island, for even more breathtaking landscapes and hidden treasures.

As the sun sets, make sure to catch the awe-inspiring view of the island bathed in golden hues. Find a cozy spot on the beach, sip on a refreshing cocktail, and witness nature’s painting in the sky. It’s a moment that will etch itself into your memory forever.

So, my dear Happy Trippers, get ready to embark on an unforgettable journey to Samal Island. Pack your bags, bring your sense of adventure, and prepare to be captivated by the beauty of this tropical paradise. Samal Island is waiting to enchant you with its stunning beaches, thrilling activities, and the warm hospitality of its people. Get ready for a trip of a lifetime!

Safe travels and have an amazing time exploring Samal Island, the Island Garden City of the Philippines!


giant slide at Maxima Aqua Fun [ Samal Island, Davao Travel Guide, Resorts, Beaches ] 


Island Garden City of Samal Guided Tour

There is a Samal guided tour that you can avail of when visiting the place. The tour covers the following places: Talicud, Angel’s Cove, Coral Garden, Babu Santa, Diaz Island, Wishing, Dayang Beach, Samal Mariculture, Kaputian Beach, Malipano, Taklobo Sanctuary, Dela Paz Islands


Where to Stay in the Island Garden City of Samal, Davao [Resorts, Beaches ]

To ensure a seamless and unforgettable trip, it’s highly recommended to book your resort or hotel room in advance. This way, you can secure the best rates and guarantee your spot in paradise. So, don’t wait until the last minute! Take a moment to click on the links below and explore the amazing selection of accommodations available on Samal Island.

By booking your room through these links, you’ll have the opportunity to compare prices and find the best deals that suit your budget. Plus, you’ll have the peace of mind of knowing that your accommodation is reserved and ready to welcome you with open arms.

Remember, the early bird catches the worm, or in this case, the best room with the most incredible views. Book now and get ready to experience the true beauty of Samal Island. Safe travels and enjoy every moment of your stay in paradise!

Must read: List of Resorts in Samal Island, Davao

How to get to the Island Garden City of Samal, Davao

For Foreign Visitors, you can fly directly to Davao City International Airport. Or if you’re entering the Philippines via its capital city of Manila or other major cities in the country, just take a domestic flight to Davao City. The domestic flight to Davao City from Manila is by major airlines with a combined frequency of fourteen (14) flights daily.

Island Garden City of Samal launch pad is in Davao City, approximately 45 minutes away by motorboat. You can go to Sta. Ana Wharf and Km 11 Wharf in Davao where there are small boats and even a ferry (if you are taking your automobile). If you will be staying in one of the big resorts such as Pearl Farm, they can bring a  separate motorboat for you.

For budget travelers, Davao City can also be reached by sea through Ferry from Manila or Cebu. A land trip to Davao from Manila is also available via Bicol, but it is going to be a very long journey.

Getting Around Island Garden City of Samal, Davao

The modes of transportation on the island are tricycles or trikes and for those staying in big resorts, they have bus and private car services. For backpackers and budget travelers, Habal-habal is the most convenient one. One motorbike or Habal-habal (motorcycle) can take 2 passengers. It would be great to agree first on the rate before engaging on any trip to the Island.

Read here for our posts about this destination:


Maxima Aqua Fun

The Giant Slide at Maxima Aqua Fun

What to Do in the Island Garden City of Samal | Tourist Attractions

  1. Giant Water Slides: Get ready for an exhilarating ride on the gigantic slides at Bluejaz Beach Resort and Water Park. These slides span an impressive length of 130 meters and drop 30 meters from top to bottom, offering a thrilling serpentine flume ride that ends in the refreshing waters below. You won’t want to miss this adrenaline-pumping adventure!
  2. Maxima Resort Aqua Fun: For another dose of excitement, head to Maxima Resort and take on their giant tarpaulin slide. This thrilling slide will send you soaring down into the sea, providing an unforgettable rush of adrenaline as you make your splash into crystal-clear waters.
  3. Luxurious Relaxation at Pearl Farm Beach Resort: Indulge in a day of pure bliss at the luxurious Pearl Farm Beach Resort. Lounge by the pool or on the pristine white sand beaches, pamper yourself with spa treatments and soak in the stunning views of the surrounding paradise. It’s the perfect place to unwind and rejuvenate.
  4. Thrilling Water Sports: Samal Island offers a wide range of exciting water sports activities. Challenge yourself with windsurfing, water polo, jet-skiing, water-skiing, banana boat rides, and scuba diving. You can also try your hand at sea kayaking, Hobie Cat sailing, surfing, and even underwater photography. Big resorts like Pearl Farm Beach Resort provide excellent facilities and equipment for these thrilling adventures.
  5. Free Fall at Hagimit Falls: Seek adventure at Hagimit Falls, where you can take hold of a thrilling free fall into the natural swimming pools. Feel the rush of adrenaline as you plunge into the crystal-clear waters, surrounded by the lush greenery of the falls. It’s an exhilarating experience amidst the beauty of nature.
  6. Caving Exploration: Delve into the fascinating world of caves by exploring Balete, Mangongawong, or Baga caves. With their intricate rock formations and mysterious ambiance, these caves offer a unique adventure for those seeking to uncover the secrets of the underground.
  7. Mountain Climbing at Mt. Puting Bato: Strap on your hiking boots and conquer the heights of Mt. Puting Bato, standing proudly at approximately 1,362 feet above sea level. The trek to the summit rewards you with breathtaking panoramic views of Samal Island and its surrounding beauty. It’s an adventure that will test your endurance and offer a sense of accomplishment.
  8. ATV Adventure at Hagimit Falls: Explore the enchanting surroundings of Hagimit Falls on an ATV adventure. Rent an ATV and ride through the scenic trails, taking in the lush landscapes and feeling the thrill of off-road exploration. It’s a fun and exciting way to immerse yourself in the natural wonders of Samal Island.
  9. Vanishing Island in Barangay Tambo: Don’t miss the chance to visit the Vanishing Island in Barangay Tambo. This unique sandbar disappears when the tide gets high, providing a rare opportunity to walk on water and witness the ebb and flow of nature. It’s a fascinating phenomenon that showcases the ever-changing beauty of Samal Island.
  10. Monfort Bats Conservation Park: Discover an awe-inspiring spectacle at the Monfort Bats Conservation Park, home to over two million bats. Witness the mesmerizing sight as they take flight during sunset, creating a breathtaking natural display. It’s a truly unforgettable experience that allows you to connect with the island’s wildlife.
  11. Japanese Cave House: Immerse yourself in Philippine history by visiting the Japanese Cave House. This historical site offers

Maxima Aqua Fun

The author resting in the water after experiencing the giant slide at Maxima Aqua Fun [ Samal Island, Davao Travel Guide, Resorts, Beaches ] 

 Happy Trip Travel Tips   

If you’re planning a delightful day trip to the enchanting Samal Island, it’s important to prepare wisely and travel with care. Let’s ensure your journey is hassle-free and filled with joyous moments. Here are a few caring tips to make your visit even more delightful.

Firstly, as you venture out for a day of exploration, pack light and carry only the essentials. The most convenient way to navigate the island is by hopping on a habal-habal, so lighten your load and give yourself the gift of freedom and ease.

When it comes to sustenance, fret not, dear traveler! Most destinations on Samal Island offer a delightful array of food and drinks. So, leave those bulky canisters behind and savor the local flavors that await you.

Remember, under the warm embrace of the sun, our skin needs tender care. Don’t forget to pack enough sunscreen to protect your precious skin from the sun’s rays. Embrace the crystal-clear waters and pristine shores of Samal’s beautiful beaches in your favorite swimwear. Capture these precious moments with your trusty camera, ensuring you have extra memory cards to store the breathtaking sights you’ll encounter.

Taking care of your well-being is of utmost importance. Be sure to pack any necessary medications you may need during your adventure. We want you to stay healthy and vibrant throughout your journey.

In this digital age, staying connected is essential. While navigating the island, keep your mobile phone close and accessible. This will not only allow you to stay in touch with loved ones but also ensure that you can easily reach out for assistance if needed.

So, dear Happy Trippers, let us embark on this unforgettable journey with preparedness and care. Pack wisely, embrace the natural beauty of Samal Island, and immerse yourself in the wonders that await you. Cherish every moment, capture the magic, and create memories to last a lifetime.

May your day trip be filled with joy, relaxation, and serenity as you embark on this remarkable adventure. Safe travels, dear wanderers!

More Happy Trip Travel Guides


  1. I’ve been to Samal a few times already and there is so much more to see. Will definitely visit the Hagimit falls and experience the slide in Maxima. Thanks for sharing those! BTW, do you have some tips on how to go to puting bato?

  2. I’ll be in samal by saturday with my friend. Hope go enjoy our 1 day trip

  3. Do you know the boat schedules back to davao city? Very informative and detailed blog post by the way. Thanks

  4. Such a paradise!
    Renting motorbikes is nearly everywhere. Visit book2wheelcom now 🙂

  5. Ohh, I wanna visit this soon. SUch a fun place to visit and I can’t wait for my turn to go here hihi

    Thanks for sharing!

  6. Waaaa! I miss Davao, actually the slide in Maxima. I had a side trip to Samal after my tour in South Cotabato. I enjoyed that slide, plus the airbed thingy. Where you’re to jump and fly! The underwater world of samal is also awesome!

  7. I am from Davao and I approve of this. I wish you were able to experience cliff diving in Canibad too.

    • Mia lamprea

      Hi! I am from
      Manila. It is possible to tour around samal if we arrived there around 9am but we’re going to leave our things first at oasis filinvest then go to where we can ride a boat going to samal? Can visit all of that mentioned above in a half day coz we’re going to davao city after? Thank you

  8. Samal looks to be like one of the most beautiful places to visit. I hope to go there with my family soon.

  9. that place looks amazing wish i can visit philippines soon. that falls! i wanna see all the waterfalls in philippines

  10. Wow this place looks amazing! I would definitely love to visit there one day, and there are so many fun things to do and explore!

  11. That slide looks like so much fun! And the water is beautiful!

  12. wow, what a beauty! I’ve been wanting to visit Davao for years. I’m looking forward to visit there when I come home. Thanks for sharing.

  13. Except for the bat sanctuary which would totally freak me out – this place looks awesome.

  14. What gorgeous place! Not sure I’d be brave enough to visit the bat sanctuary though! Yikes!!!

  15. This place looks amazing. And those water slides are calling my name.

  16. Those slides look amazing (and scary)! What a beautiful place!!!

  17. This looks like a super fun and full of adventures places! Would love to go for a whole week!

  18. victoria

    Such a fun place to visit. I would love to go there and have some fun.

  19. I’ve visited Samal years ago and always love seeing the place because it’s just so clean and really beautiful.

  20. Nicole Escat

    Such a fun and great place to go. I would love to take my family to Davao.

  21. Ryan Escat

    Such a beautiful place. I want to go there with my family.

  22. Wonderful images! Thanks for sharing this guide. A must read for first time travelers! Awesome!

  23. I wish I can visit Davao this summer, it is one of my wishlist. I’m taking notes of the guide you listed here… very informative!

  24. Elizabeth O.

    There’s just so much to see and do there in Samal. The island is lovely and I think it’s great that most of the activities are also for kids. So it’s really perfect for a fun family trip!

  25. Everything looks taken out of a movie! im so jealous =) id love going there sometime…

  26. It looks like an amazing place to vacation! I would probably lounge around and go spalunking.

  27. I have never heard of samal island before, it definitely seems like my kind of place.

  28. This is a brand new place to me. I was happy to learn about it–never heard of it before.

  29. Wow such a beautiful place, I would love to go visit there one time, Your guide is so detailed to! Thank you for sharing

  30. These are wonderful places. I need to check these out as I want a beach vacation.

  31. Robin Rue (@massholemommy)

    That sounds like such a fun place to visit. I would love to go.

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