Few cities in the Philippines offer as many attractions to tourists as Davao City. While the thriving city is packed with breathtaking views of Mother Nature’s creations – from magnificent mountains and valleys to tranquil beaches, this city also boasts many places teeming with a rich history and culture that will make any history buff’s jaw drop.

As one of the largest cities in the world, visitors will never get bored with Davao City’s wealth of cultural, historical and natural offerings. As we all know, truly getting to know a city is more than just visiting attractions but it also requires a travel back to its past like a visit to these must-see historical heritage sites in Davao City.

1. City Hall of Davao

City Hall of Davao
Image credit: davaocentral.com

Situated right in the heart of the city, the City Hall of Davao is one of the oldest landmarks in Davao City. This iconic building was first built as a municipal hall by the American government in 1926 but was destroyed in WWII. The city hall was fully restored in 1947 and still looks much the same as it was in 1903 with its original facade being preserved.

The city you experience today is founded on the daily grind that takes place at the Davao City Hall, where all the developmental plans are conceived and approved for implementation. Along with the San Pedro Cathedral and Osmena Park, the Davao City Hall is one of the main city attractions not to be missed.

2. Mount Apo

Mount Apo - Davao
Image credit: Bro. Jeffrey Pioquinto, SJ | Flickr.com

Towering over Davao City at 2954 metres, this dormant volcanic mountain is located south of Davao and is the highest peak in the Philippines. Aptly named Apo, which means “grandfather” in Tagalog, this magnificent wonder boasts an exotic display of nature, from fascinating flora and fauna, stunning blue lakes and cascading waterfalls to geysers and sulfur pillars.

Despite its height, the mountain is considered easy to climb and is any mountaineer’s dream conquest. Even if you’re struggling to complete ten steps without panting your lungs out, the breathtaking view when you reach the peak will be worth more than any souvenir.

3. Uyanguren Landing Site

The Uyanguren Landing Site marks the spot where Don Jose Uyanguren landed in Davao with the intent of invading the region. The Spanish conquistador, who later became the first governor of Davao, strategically managed the ports and welcomed Spanish settlers which earned the city its reputation as a coastal commercial hub.

Under his control, Davao’s commerce flourished and the region gradually transformed from a tribal community into a civilised and organised region. This is the place to visit to get a glimpse into where Davao’s transformation began.

4. Battle Memorial & Japanese Peace Memorial Shrine

JAPANESE PEACE MEMORIAL SHRINE in Davao
Image credit: My Homeworks | Facebook

Located within the compound of Mintal Elementary School, this memorial is a historical marker symbolising the longest battle between joint forces of the American and Filipino troops, and the Japanese Imperial Army. The Japanese Peace Memorial Shrine which honours Japanese war veterans, is also located in the same town.

Both monuments are visited by war veterans and their families every year to celebrate the heroism of all soldiers who risked their lives for their countries. Many visitors often visit the Battle Memorial and shrine for a glimpse into the heroic moments which happened in Tugbok District and to pay tribute to all the fallen heroes.

5. San Pedro Cathedral

San Pedro Cathedral
Image credit: Franz28 | commons.wikimedia.org

Constructed in 1847 by Don Jose Uyanguren during the Spanish colonial period, the San Pedro Cathedral is the oldest church in Davao City and is one of the most stunning churches that was built during the Spanish colonisation. Despite its age, you’ll be surprised to see how well-preserved altar and the original carvings of the various saints are, which makes this church truly a sight to behold.

Every Sunday, a section of the streets will be closed to allow the passage of hundreds of churchgoers, and the streets around the church will be bustling with vendors selling all kinds of religious accessories from candles, rosaries to prayer books, and even colourful balloons and toys to entice children.

6. Andres Bonifacio Rotunda

Andres Bonifacio Rotunda
Image credit: shankar s. | Flickr.com

Many cities have experienced remarkable turnarounds due in large part to local heroes who’ve made tremendous sacrifices to make a difference to their communities, and Davao is no exception.

Affectionately known to his comrades as “Supremo”, Andres Bonifacio was a revolutionary nationalist and founder of the Katipunan, a secret revolutionary society which sought to gain independence from Spanish colonial rule and eventually sparked the Philippine Revolution.

This statue of Davao City’s local hero Andres Bonifacio is situated right inside a small roundabout next to the Davao Museum, but it is hard to miss its prominence.


Philippines is a beautiful place to visit with gorgeous beaches and resorts. However, it is also an amazing cultural destination, with rich history! Book your holiday through ShopBack and enjoy the best travel deals!

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