Sunday, May 04, 2014

Sunday, May 04, 2014

Visiting the “Garden of Eden Restored”, one must wear proper clothing, read: Decent clothing.
No flipflops, no short pants, and sleeveless shirts or spag-straps, NO!  After all this is a religious sanctuary where proper decorum must be observed. 
A visit to the “Garden” require planning way in advance, a Letter of Request must be submitted and approved at their office at the Jose Maria College (see pic left-above), located along Phil-Japan Friendship Highway, Davao City, at least 1 week or two before your intended visit.




Early morning on the day of our visit, we passed by the Jose Maria College to pick up our permit and immediately, we proceeded to the site.  It's more than an hour drive from Davao City proper.

Upon arrival at the compound, we were greeted by a very welcoming, friendly and cheerful lady staff who led us to the café/reception area where one can have some snacks, and then there was a video presentation, followed by a brief orientation of the place.So what is the Garden of Eden Restored all about?  In simple appraisal, this place is a huge parkland, a theme park, a botanical haven, a Disneyland minus the rides and Mickey Mouse.  Not!  Although it seemed to be.
It’s a well-maintained garden estate, manicured lawns speckled with all sorts of trees, foliage, shrubs, bushes, bursting in colors with all varieties of flowers and rare orchid species.  Several gazeebos, cemented footpaths, ponds, fountains and fruit plantation, resting benches with porch umbrellas.  It’s even better than the Baguio Botanical Garden, in my own personal observation.





The high-walled compound houses perhaps all amenities one needs – restaurants, café, shops, stores.  Several townhomes-type utopian buildings lining one side of the compound, archetypical of some European mansions.  According to our lady guide, she, her family and all the workers in the compound live in those villas.  It’s like a piece of Europe within a wall.

The house of Apollo Quiboloy himself is not hugely impressive but big enough, beside it is the Prayer House, a small chapel of sort where one offer prayers or meditate.  Right in the middle is a huge stack of mails from people around the world beseeching prayers perhaps.  Our guide discloses that some visitors would come back to express their gratitude for prayers (at the prayer house) fulfilled.

In the middle of the grassy lawn at the back of the café near the entrance is a round cemented helipad.  There must be quite a lot of cctv cameras all around the place, it’s well guarded and staffed.
The compound is huge enough to house a whole community or village, or a disneypark for holiday treat.  Yet, with all its botanical splendor, this is certainly a place for peaceful meditation, retreat, and rekindling of fate.  It’s far from the city proper but well worth a visit if you’re spending a lot of time in Davao.
The Garden of Eden Restored, also known by many as Prayer Mountain is located in Tamayong, Calinan, Davao City.  Around here is the birthplace of the founder and leader of the Kingdom of Jesus Christ (a church), one of the popular and influential (as well) religious figure in the country – Apollo Quiboloy.

TIPS
Bring your own umbrella and head caps, in case it rain or it’s a sunny day.  Tripods, professional videocams not allowed, and don’t wear short pants and flipflops.

Getting to the place requires that you have your own vehicle as there is no public transportation available.
For further information, visit their site at:

Address: KJC Comp., Phil-Japan Friendship Highway, Davao City, Philippines
Landline No.: (082) 2342866
Mobile No. : +63 916 557 3333
Google Map DirectionPrayer Mountain

0 comments:

Post a Comment