The city center has all the amenities of city life—malls, restaurants, and tons of trycicles! It’s the center of trade and education in the region. Move to the outskirts and you’ll find vast tracks of farmland and rainforested mountain ranges. Koronadal is one of the few Hiligaynon-speaking cities in Mindanao, the rest are primarily Cebuano. But don’t be surprised if you hear B’laan, T’boli, Maguindanaon, and the Cebuano language spoken by the locals as the city has quite a diverse population.
The capital of the province and the region, Koronadal is the main trading center and educational hub. There are plenty of restaurants. Sabalai Bistro is an homage to Philippine cuisine while the sleek Cinco Ninas offers an urban ambience. This area, along with the rest of South Cotabato, has a lot of meat—pork, chicken and beef, etc. So you’ll find restaurants like Manny’s Balbacua and Bulalo which serves all parts of cow—fried, boiled or steamed. You can even taste cow skin or bone marrow. And of course, every town in the country has their version of halo-halo, literally “mix-mix.” The dessert is a cool concoction of jellied fruit and beans, flan, milk, and ice cream. In Apareha’s, they serve this in a coconut.
Looking to escape city life within the confines of this city? The hills and mountains that surround the city offer refuge and an adventure. The Suppon and the 70-foot Siok Watefall will surely tickle your fancy. Cadidang Cave within the Roxas mountain range is just a 30-40 minute drive from the city center. Up for a swim? The Paraiso Verde Water Resort has a wave pool and olympic sized swimming pool. If you want to stay in a resort, The Farm @ Carpenter Hill, with its spacious and Asian-inspired setting is everyone’s favorite relaxation destination.