Things to Do in Panabo City, Davao Del Norte

Panabo City is a 3rd class city in the province of Davao Del Norte located in the border of Metro Davao with a population of more than 180 thousand people and one of the fastest growing cities in Davao Region. It is formerly known as Magugpo (an old barangay of Tagum) and originally inhabited by the native group of Aetas that directly engage in hunting using the bow and arrow (Pana sa Baboy) and root crops production as their daily diet. In the 20th century, Panabo became the center of trade or known as Taboan, immigrated by the Christians, then later, the indigenous group move to the highland.

Today, Panabo became the agro-industrial city and home of numerous banana plantations. Banana cultivation and exportation is the backbone of the city's economy that claimed their namesake of “the Banana Capital of the Philippines”. Aside from that, there are spots that can also be explored when visiting Panabo City;

The Baywalk

Bay walk is always part when it comes to a developing of a city in the coastal part. Part of the activities in the bay is to bond with the breathtaking sunrise while enjoying the fresh air neither witnessing the epic view of the sunset with the great panoramic background as the day end. At night, the bay walk turned into a party place which everyone can enjoy a food trip and drinks can be ordered in the numerous food stalls.
Seaport view at the Bay walk area, Panabo City 2018
The Panabo Park
Panabo Park is located in the Old City Hall building, near Panabo City Grand Terminal. The Park displayed with an impressive sculpture design made by the Mindanaoan Artist, Kublai Milan. Inside the Old City Hall is the exhibit of several artifacts, historical insights, and paintings with connections to the City history.

The iconic banana sculpture in Panabo City Park, 2018

The Mangrove Park

Since Panabo City is situated at the Davao Gulf, the mangrove has a vital role in keeping the city from any catastrophic event. The environmental activists believed that the mangrove helps stabilize the coastlines and control erosions caused by floods and waves.  Today, the mangrove turned into a Park which is perfect for the walking, mesmerizing with an Instagramable background.

the other side of the mangrove park, 2018

The Panabo City Hall 

Panabo City Hall is a local government office and the mayor’s office is located. It has an impressive modern design and turned into a Christmas village when it lights up during the Christmas season.

Panabo Mariculture Park

This Mariculture Park is a sustainable project made by the Local government of Panabo in partnership with the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) that provides a stable livelihood to more than 50 fishermen. This partnership aims for the continuous support on infrastructure improvement, equipment’s, and other support services.   This farm produces varieties of commercial fish such as dangit, milkfish, kingfish, Lapu-Lapu, lobster, prawns, and other first-class harvests. If you wish to try their fresh catch, get on and dine at BSK restaurant located at the Panabo City Bay walk area, near at the fish port.

The Panabo Night Market

Located at the central market, a dynamic night market can be experienced with a unique blend of cultural identity through several food variations they served, apparels shops and the selections of the famous Ukay-Ukay (second-hand items). Parts of the street are closed from 5:00 PM up to 2:00 AM daily to give the space to the small entrepreneurs by put up their stalls. Try the best Kwek-Kwek (boiled egg then fry with coated flour mix in orange color) and fish ball dip with the homemade sauce, then pair it flavored juice drink. A selection of barbeque stalls and roasted meats at the other side, which can be ordered on the spot per then cook and have fine dining experience under the stars.

One of my favorite street food; pork barbeque, isaw & hotdog

Panabo City Sports Center 

One of the Philippines Identity is that every city has its own sports center which is built by the government and several basketball courts around the communities.  Sports center in Panabo City held several events and the only arena in the province of Davao Del Norte where the Professional Basketball team played in selected games. The Arena’s backyard is also used by the aspiring soccer kids club for their daily routine training.

Mabunao Eco-park

Mabunao Eco-Park is located in Barangay Mabunao featuring the 281 steps stairs towards the campsite. This place has not many activities and still under development but has potential in years to come.

Panabo at Night

If you’re a nightlife enthusiast, there are two famous Bar in the city. Ultrabowl - a restaurant that served with local dishes (try the Sito’s Grill) in the daytime with the bowling (pin) amenities inside while a live band performance and an entertainment disco at night. Another famous Bar in Panabo is the PADs  Kamayan; that attracts youngsters and frequent party goers who love the disco and the live Band.

Try the best food of Panabo

Aside from fast food and restaurant, there are several food establishments that locally brand from Panabo City. As a food lover, searching for something unique but affordable dish became a strange routine in every place I go. There's a lot of places to eat in Panabo City but this is just my recommendations.

  • Darwin Balbacuahan - is the oldest stall serving with the best Balbacua in town.
  • Food centrum - located beside the old City hall. Best time to eat here at night with a lot of choices from a variety of food stalls. 
  • Mervic Lechon  -  one of the best Lechon (roasted pig) in Panabo, located in the national highway in front of Rivera hospital 
  • CARAs food haven - served local food in a mid-price range located in Mahogany street
  • Dens cafĂ© - a Filipino food (a typical Lutong Bahay) served through the buffet at a good price; located in Quezon Street, Barangay  Sto. Nino
  • Maria Clara Restaurant - located in Panabo wharf road, Barangay San Pedro; this classy restaurant served with Filipino and international food. 

The Binulig festival

Binulig festival is thanksgiving celebration for the abundant of the year-round harvests that marked every 19th – 25th of September with lots of awaited activities like street dancing competition, trade fair, sporting events and more.

Book a flight bound for Davao City (Bangoy) International Airport with daily flights schedule available from the major airport in the country. At the Airport, have a short walk or hire a taxi to reach the bus stop near the exit gate at the front of Jose Maria College. Then, Catch up a bus bound for Tagum City, Butuan or Mati City, then, gets off to Panabo City Grand Terminal.


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