Sunday, September 2, 2012

Kwentong Kaladkarin #39: Davao Delights – A Day in Eden

Da Where: Eden Nature Park & Resort, Mt. Talomo, Toril, Davao City
Da When: August 12, 2012
Da Who: me and Deej, on our Davao Duo trip

If you were brought up in a Catholic home and had Christian Living, Religion or Catechism classes when you were younger, then likely the word Eden is synonymous to Paradise. It is said to to be the garden where Adam and Eve were brought and there was no want or need in this place.
If only there was a similar place here on Earth. :)

For those just wanting a  quick nature trip, there's a park and resort of the same name that can be found on the foothills of Mt. Talomo in Toril, Davao. And this is where our feet (Deej and mine) found themselves on our "no-itinerary" trip to Davao.

We're both no strangers to this city down south; having been there twice myself and once even climbed Mt. Apo, and Deej living and working there for almost a year. This time though, we're here to catch up with friends and enjoy a few days of no work, pure pleasure. :)

From our backpacker lodging place in downtown Davao, we hailed a jeep going to Toril and paid PhP20/pax for about an hour commute. Just ask the driver to drop you off at Mercury Drugstore in Toril where single-drive motorbikes (habal-habal) can take you up the foothills of Mt. Talomo to Eden Nature Park.
Weeeeeh! :)
Make sure you take a ride from the queue of motorbikes right beside Mercury Drugstore so you get the association-approved rates of PhP60/pax if two people are riding one motorbike. If you prefer to ride alone with the driver, then it's going to be PhP100/pax. Deej and I took a ride from the first guy we saw after getting off the jeep and he charged us and outrageous PhP100/pax and Deej and I had to squeeze into one bike. Darn opportunistic people preying on hapless travelers. They don't realize that duping visitors actually reflects poorly on them. Tsk.

Anyway, we just tried enjoying the cool, green scenery before us as the wind caressed our faces with the temperature noticeably getting cooler as we go up higher. When we entered the resort's gates, we were handed a day trip pass from the security officer and proceeded to the Visitor's Center.

Deej and I paid PhP470 each for the buffet lunch which already included the day tour entrance fee. We made it just in time, lunch was served at 1130H. There was not much food choices but I enjoyed the fresh veggies grown inside the park and the sliced fruits too. Dining almost al-fresco also added to the ambiance.

Peacocks and peahens roam freely.
Fresh fruits and veggies.
We also shelled out PhP120 for the park tour so we hopped on a tour coaster after lunch. The tour took about 30 minutes with a lady guide telling us about how the nature park started and some tidbits about the flora and fauna of the area. Deej and I learned the park also had a mountain trail for the more adventurous who wants to do some hiking and camping. Well, we weren't prepared for that so maybe next time. All the greens actually made the tour very refreshing and we even had some glimpses of the Davao Gulf.

Hydroponic (soil-less) farming in the park
The Rainbow Pass and Ampitheatre
The Flower Garden
The inedible but attractive Mickey Mouse plant
A traditional house at the Tinubdan village

Make a wish...
Pagod na. :D
Deej and I thought the zipline and horseback-riding facilities were in the same area. The resort is best explored on foot but be prepared to walk long distances so comfy flip-flops or shoes is needed. We had to walk all the way to the entrance and cross to the other side of the park for the zipline and horseback-riding facilities.

It was Deej's first time to zipline (PhP150/pax for the roundtrip ride) and my first time to go horseback-riding (PhP85/pax for 15 minutes). We were both jittery but we had so much fun! :)

Ziplining over a view of Davao! :)
Deej and Cookie
Me and Ara.
By the time Deej and I got back to the city, we were weary but definitely didn't regret the tiring commute. It may be a far cry from the biblical Eden but absolutely worth it. :)

Eden Nature Park & Resort
Mount Talomo, Toril  Davao City
(082) 299 1020 for reservations

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