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Bankerohan Public Market Davao City

2010 October 31

Bankerohan Public Market

One of my favorite places that I visited during our recent trip to Davao and Samal Island was the Bankerohan Public Market in Davao City. The trip to the market was toward the end of our visit and served two purposes, to help me practice my Cebuano (Bisaya) in a “live setting”, and of course to see this gem of Davao City. My only regret was that I didn’t spend more time there. Next time it will be a priority for me.

I’d not been to the Bankerohan Public Market during any previous visits, so this was quite a treat for me. I wasn’t expecting it to be so large and so nice. I was also able to go through part of the Agdao Market while there this time, but I much prefer the Bankerohan Market. The stalls, and really the whole setup, just seemed so much nicer. I’m not sure how the two compare in prices, as I didn’t really get a chance to buy that much and there was an awful lot to take in.

I was escorted to the market by Mindanao Bob (Bob Martin) and my Bisaya teacher, Bebe. It was a pleasure to join them to practice my Bisaya, and to see how far along Bob was in his own practice. It certainly was motivation for me to keep at it, regardless of how slow it’s been going for me at times. I worked on phrases like, “Pwede ba ko’ng magpractice ug Bisaya? (Can I practice Bisaya)”, “Unsa’y imong pangalan? (What is your name)”, “Pila kini? (How much is this), and related phrases. It was a lot of fun to see and hear their responses. Most vendors were very receptive to speaking to me, and that it was also fun, if not funny, for them.

Anki Bisaya Phrasebook Flashcards

I also got to see a lot of fruits and vegetables that I’d never encountered before. Most vendors would have samples available for you, and if not, were more than agreeable to cut some for you. I purchased something that I can’t even remember what it was, but it was more for the exercise of buying something using only Bisaya. It was quite good, whatever it was.

I think the best part of the trip to the market was when we took a back path to the inside of the market and ended up at a little restaurant that I believe was called Del Mar Cafeteria. There I got to enjoy a little more Bisaya discussion, but more essentially I got to try puto maya and sikwate. I don’t think they called it sikwate, that’s what I’ve found looking for it on Google, but it was the drink made from pure tabilya or tsokolate. I really enjoyed that, as it is the pure cacao beans roasted and ground into tablets. I picked up a pack of their Pure Tabliya and brought back with me, but so far have not been able to emulate the drink they made for me. I guess they have a little more practice at it than me.

Samal Island has their own markets. In particular there is a Public Market in Penaplata, and I imagine I’ll take advantage of the that pretty often at some point in the future. That said, a trip to Bankerohan Public Market will be one of the main reasons for me to visit Davao when we are finally living on Samal.

17 Responses leave one →
  1. Lyndon permalink
    October 31, 2010

    Bankerohan is the best place to be when you want really good fishes and meat :]

    • October 31, 2010

      Hi Lyndon – it looked like they had a great variety of both of those, as well as fruits and vegetables. I understand the prices are very good as well.

  2. November 1, 2010! Nice randy..! Sekwati and puto maya! hehe Yeah, sekwati – hot chocolate drinks, tableya- native chocolate solids from pure cacao brought by the Spaniards i think here in the Phil.. :) Nice too know, kahibaw ka mogamit ug mga bisaya na mga words(you know how to use visayan words . Ayo ayo igsoon(brother)! God Bless and amping(take care) ! :D

    • November 1, 2010

      Hi Dal – thanks for the nice comments. Yes that sekwati was very good and I hope and can learn to make it here and promote it as well.

      • November 1, 2010

        Walay sapayan( Your welcome) randy! Yes you can! :) i will help you, i will send you instructions on how to cook sekwati!

        • November 2, 2010

          Daghang salamat. I believe I have not been using enough tableas so far. I have a few left and will try with more, as is suggested.

  3. November 2, 2010

    Randy, good to see you had a chance to practice your Bisaya at the market. Same market Bob and I went to back in July. It’s really exciting to actually speak the same language with the vendors there. I’m sure everyone there was happy to listen to the kano try some Bisaya.

    I like the Samal book. Salamat.

    • November 2, 2010

      Yeah, I think most of them got a kick out of it. I thought it might be the same market, but wasn’t sure.

      Glad to hear the book arrived and that you enjoyed it.

  4. November 3, 2010

    Hi Randy – I’ve been waiting for you to write about this, I figured you would! I was also going to write about our trip, but wanted to give you the first crack at it!

    I also enjoyed our visit to Bankerohan, it was a blast. When we first went, I could feel how tense you were to speak Bisaya, but you really loosened up as the time went by! You were speaking like a native by the time we went back to my house!

    I’m glad you enjoyed the trip, Randy!

    • November 3, 2010

      Hi Bob – it took me awhile as I’ve been a little swamped since I returned. I guess that’s good, at least in regards to work.

      Thanks again for the hospitality. It was also great to see Feyma again and meet your family.

  5. Mariane permalink
    May 21, 2012

    hello there! i am from davao and my family has a “laray” there (hehehe..just ask your mentor what that means ) along datu bago st. you should try going to bankerohan next time at dawn, there would be lots of sikwate and puto mayas. and you know what? we from bankerohan are always eager to entertain foreigners like you because conversing with the likes of you always make us very worried but definitely always bring us laughter afterwards.. :)

    • May 21, 2012

      Hi Mariane – I was just at Bankerohan yesterday. I was tracking down some dried garbanzo beans (chickpea) and was successful finding a stall that had them.

      I’ve not been there around dawn before, but I do get my sikwate at home almost every morning. Need to cut back and start drinking tea instead.

      Thanks for the comment, I appreciate it.

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