Short visit to Davao, Mindanao, Philippines

Holiday Ocean View Marina

The entrance to the marina is different from what we have seen so far..
Ocenview Marina on Samal
The entrance to the Oceanview Marina is well protected.

There is a gate and two ropes with floating elements blocking the entrance for waves and unwanted visitors. I have to call Ruth in the office via satellite phone to arrange the gate to be opened.

The workers of the marina come and move the elements, then they wave at us throwing both their arms towards us. We understand the sign as “go away”, keep waiting and wonder what the problem is. After 15 min I call Ruth another time and she tells me “ they are waiting for you to come in”. Ok, so we slowly enter the marina and attach to our berth.

Shortly after we learn that the local sign for “Come” looks like our European “Go away”, no wonder we are confused…

The marina is situated in the north end of Samal, an island just across from Davao, the capital of Mindanao.

Easy Check-in into the Philippines

Immigration Davao
In the immigration office we watch “Three angels for Charlie” ;-)…
Customs Davao
…and at Customs Hazel’s efficient work and friendly way surprises us pleasently
Samal Task Force
Samal Task Force is checking on the people of the ferry entering the island
Samal Ferry
The ferry Davao – Samal does the transport of persons, bikes, cars,…
Samal Ferry
…and every now and then a cow on a motorcycle 😉
Samal Ferry
He doesn’t seem to like sunlight
Davao Port
Directly next to the ferry the Container port of Davao

The next morning we take the Marina Shuttle to the ferry, then the ferry over to Davao and a taxi to Immigration and back to customs. The officers are both efficient and friendly and the fees are acceptably low, especially after Micronesia. Hazel from customs excuses herself for taking so long, even though she was working super efficient, even running through the building to get our fees paid in and our receipt collected.

The cost for a Taxi ride an hour across the city is about 4 Dollars, a bit longer it takes in the local open minibuses, but there you pay only 0.20 per person.

Shopping Paradise Davao

Service in Abreeza Mall
A practical combination, in Abreeza mall you can shop and go the the service at the same place
Babak center Samal
Babak centre, seems after Micronesia almost as a big city for us!
Trikes in Samal
The Trikes are the usual public transport here on Samal

But we only visit the city if necessary, because many things like fresh veggies and food and some hardware stuff we already find in Babak town on Samal.

Here the main public transport seems to be the motorbikes and the trikes, which are motorbikes with a side car attached for the passengers.

Vegetables Market Babak
And it has been long (since Nov in Fiji) that I haven’t found such a variety of fresh veggies!!

Maintenance and Sozializing

Engine Service
Engine room sauna – the clothes are soaking wet each time
Engine Service
Some wear parts have to be replaced, for example the broken impeller – the loose part we recover in front of the heat exchanger…

After the first shopping tours our priority shift to the engine maintenance. A total of 4 days Reto spends in the engine rooms, where the temperature is an additional 5 degrees to the already felt pretty hot 36 degrees outside.

He calls it Engine Yoga because of the interesting movements he has to do to access, but when he comes out it looks more like Engine Sauna and his clothes are soaking wet every time.

But also the socializing is pretty much fun here. Already our first evening we spend on Allen’s Screensaver doing an extensive sundowner together with Rick and Jen from the Foxy Lady and Liliane and Micheal from Meikyo. Then there is Pizza night, BBQ and Potluck but we skip the Sunday lunch, as we prefer to do out boat work during the day…

Getting ready for Indonesia

Major event is to get our visa for Indonesia in the embassy on the other side of Davao, which goes well all the documents are prepared as requested.

Already since days we see that a slot with Easterly winds comes up, this we want to use to cross over to the first island in the north of Indonesia.

Leaving south to the Golf of Davao

Oceanview Marina Samal
The Davao Marina from above, after 2.5 weeks we have to say goodbye again
Fishing boat
Fishing vessel in the Golf von Davao
Tourist boat
and here the modern Version with safety equipment
Fishing boat
… and here the special version, the “Spider boats”
Babak center Samal
If for Fishing or tourists, in San Remigio the beach is full with coulorful well kept Bangka boats

After provisioning, a last run to the malls and checking out again we leave the marina on Saturday, May 25th.

Visit on board
James, Losel, Jasmel and Jerico visit us on board, mainly to make selfies
Samal beach
Already in the morning at 6 am the beach is full with people…

The first 20 miles we engine down south to to the beach of San Remigio on the southern side of Samal. Only once there we realize that is Saturday, the beach is crowded with local weekend guests.

We are the attraction of the beach, our She San as well as ourselves end up on many photos and selfies.

Samal beach party
Instead of morning workout we are invited to a cup of Red Horse beer (7% alc)…
Samal beach party
and a bit later to share the breakfast Fried Noodels..
Samal beach party
…a friendly good bye

In the morning before 7 am we head to the beach intending to have a good walk around, but a group of friendly young people invite us to share a beer, a bit later to share their breakfast of fried noodles with pork salad. Yummy, we are hungry even from the short walk and have fun talking to our new friends.

We are lucky that day and get some wind from almost the right direction, so we manage to sail the larger part of the 25 miles to the Baksal bay.

Friendly visit on board
The teenager are curious and happy about cookies and lemonade

Once there it doesn’t take long and we are surrounded by the teenagers of the little village, they are curiously looking at She San and happy to get some lemonade and cookies.

Friendly visit on board
Lorre and Resedelia Cortez with their three daughters come out to check if we are ok

A bit later Lorre Cortez comes out with his family, as we understand mainly to apologize for the kids and to make sure that we are ok.

He’s embarrassed not to speak a better English (although his wife does know more, but tells it to him to tell it to us..) and I am embarrassed that my Bisaya is not existing, but I do understand a few bits from Spanish of Indonesian words.

In the morning we move a few miles south next to Sigaboy island for the last internet duties.

Fishing boat
Fishing vessel in front of the setting sun

The weather forecast for tomorrow is still promising Easterlies, so we have to soon say “Bye bye friendly Philippines!”, we really enjoyed our short stay here!

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