Davao del Sur
is in southeastern Mindanao. It is bounded on the north by
Davao Province, on the east by Davao Gulf, on the west by Cotabato
Province, Sultan Kudarat and South Cotabato, and on the south by
the Mindanao Sea. Geographically, Davao City is in Davao del Sur.
It is a highly urbanized city.
|| Digos City
|| 5,164 sq. km.
|Number of Towns:
The western part of the province is dominated by Mt. Apo which is
the country´s highest peak. Mount Tanglao and Mount Latian
are two other landmarks in the hinterlands. Wide fertile valleys
are found between the mountain ranges and the narrow coastal plains
in the east.
The weather is basically warm with no marked seasons. Rainfall
is evenly distributed throughout the year.
A Brief History_______________________________
Davao del Sur was created from the old province of Davao in 1967.
Davao derived its name from the Bagobo word Daba-Daba referring
to the Sacred Brass of the tribe´s legendary chieftain,
Datu Duli, who lived in Mount Apo.
The letter "o" was added to the word, making it Daba-o
Daba-o which, to the Bagobos, means justice and the datu´s
fairness to his people. As years went by, the word was shortened
to Dab-o and eventually, Davao.
Davao City was founded by a Spanish expedition led by Jose Oyanguren
in 1848. He named the village Nueva Vergara after his hometown
in Spain. It became a city on October 16, 1936.
The majority of the population are Visayan migrants. Cebuano is
the most widely spoken language. Other prominent migrant groups
are the Ilonggos and the Ilocanos.
Several ethnic groups exist in the province, among them B´laans,
Bagobos, Manobos and Tagacaolos. These early settlers occupied
the slopes, and base of Mt. Apo, and have developed their own
cultures which have been preserved to this day.
The Bogobos, for example, are known for their colorful dresses
woven from Abaca fiber and ornamented with beads, shells, metal
disks and embroidery in geometric patterns. They also wear bells
as anklets or costume accessories so they jiggle when the walk
Commerce and Industy_______________________________
Because of its favorable climate and fertile soil, Davao del Sur
is primarily an agricultural province. It is popularly known as
Coconut Country since coconut is its major commercial crop. Its
rice and corn production is more than sufficient for its population.
Other crops grown are bananas, cacao, ramie, coffee, fruits and
Davao City is the commercial center of southern Mindanao. Foreign
and domestic vessels load and unload goods at its port.
Davao Gulf is the major fishing grounds of the city. There are
eleven coastal municipalities facing the Philippine Sea.
Logging has supported a wood-processing industry but rapid forest
depletion is a cause of concern.
Getting There and Away_______________________________
Regular buses ply the route from Davao City to General Santos. Buses depart from Manila to Davao City via Bicol, Samar, and
Leyte daily. Buses from Cagayan de Oro are also available daily. Flights are also available from Manila and Cebu. Ferries going to Davao City from Manila via Cebu and Zamboanga
city are also available.
Map of Davao
del Sur Province
Map of the Philippines | About