Arrival in Davao, Philippines

We arrived in Manila around 4AM! We are staying at the Pearl Farm Beach Resort on Davao so they had a van come to pick the four of us up and drive us to the marina. It was raining a bit but it wasn’t too humid so it was tolerable. It was still dark out when we arrived to the marina and we had to take a ferry to the actual resort. Unfortunately for us the next ferry wasn’t until 8AM! So we stayed in the lounge of the marina and took naps and drank coffee. At the marina, they searched our luggage because we’re not supposed to bring any of your own food or snacks to the resort. If you want to bring you own stuff, you have to pay a “corkage” which is an arbitrary amount. Watch out if you visit this resort, hiding drinks and food within your luggage doesn’t really help, they will poke around your clothes and stuff to find it!

We took the ferry at 8am and it took about 30 minutes to get to Davao.

To welcome our arrival, they play this wonky comical music which is quite funny. They give you a glass of fresh pineapple juice as you disembark from the ship.

We checked into our suites, Ron and I stayed in “Samal 3” which is one of the cabins right on the water. The window faces the water and you have a small balcony with a seat and a rack for drying your swimwear. Inside the cabin is a queen size bed, the bathroom is the other side of the cabin with a separate room for toilet, and open sink with two closets, then another separate room for shower. Quite cozy.

We went to have the breakfast buffet which is included with our stay. The papaya was the best part. The buffet also included things like pork toscino (sweet) and beef tapia (salty).

Next to the restaurant there is this cage which a beautiful white parrot, his name is Charlie. He can only say “Hello” and “Goodbye” and “Charlie”. At least that’s all we could get him to say.

After breakfast, we walked to the other side of the resort where there are water sports and Ron signed up to start his scuba certification lessons. He will be doing that while I just go snorkeling.

Since we had quite a long journey, we went to rest a bit. We fed the fishes that were swimming below our balcony with some bread from the buffet and then took a nap until late afternoon.

Ron and I went to explore more the island and ended up at the Game Room to shoot some pool. Afterwards we met up with Timo and Elina at the restaurant for some drinks, I tried the fresh green mango juice and Ron had classic Coke in a bottle.

Together we walked to the far end of the resort and I took a nap on the lounge chairs on the beach while the rest chatted away.

We eventually left the beach and went back to our cabins, this time everyone took a nap before meeting up at the bar. Parola Bar is a small bar located in the tower as you arrive to the resort. They have karaoke in the evenings. The drinks are a bit weak but if youÕre friendly to the bartender, the drinks are made a bit stronger. Ron had the mango daquiri and I tried the Pearl Farm cocktail.

After drinks, we went to have dinner. There is only one restaurant on the island so I think we’ll be going through their entire menu before we leave the resort.

Our dinner guests were the geckos all around…

We shared the Chicken Binakol Soup (Filipino lemongrass scented chicken soup with summer vegetables in a crisp pastry crust served in a coconut, P200 = 200 Pesos, 1USD ~ P45).

The portion was quite large and it was quite tasty.

I ordered the Crispy Pata (Crispy deep fried boneless pork knuckle with vinegar dipping sauce, P450).

This was basically deep fried pork fat. It actually had quite a lot of meat and was VERY filling. If you have high cholesterol, don’t eat this!

Ron ordered the Deep Fried Chicken (Local herb-marinated chicken served with French fries and pickled green papaya, P275).

Inexpensive but nothing to rave about.

Elina had the Char-grilled gindara fillet on lobster dumplings (with stirfry noodles on teriyaki glaze, P290).

Timo had the Tournedos of Pork Tenderloin (on chives pomme puree with sautŽed spinach and shallots, P350).

After our filling dinner, we went to the game room and Ron played a game of chess before we headed back to watch TV and head to bed.

This will be a good vacation!

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