SPOTS IN VISIT IN CAGAYAN DE ORO. Cagayan de Oro is also known as the City of Friendship, and it is a traveller’s gateway to the various tour destinations in Northern Mindanao. While CDO serves as a good base for those who want to visit Camiguin, Bukidnon or Iligan, CDO itself has some attractions worth a visit. Below is a list of places to see in Cagayan de Oro as well as its neighbouring provinces.
PLACES TO SEE IN CAGAYAN DE ORO (CDO)
CAGAYAN DE ORO RIVER – WHITE WATER RAFTING
This is probably THE spot in Cagayan de Oro not to miss. The Cagayan de Oro River boasts of 14 rapids which tourists can enjoy through a basic course. Our travel agency offers White Water Rafting adventures which includes a jeepney pick up from yor hotel in Cagayan de Oro to the rafting site. We get the most competent river guides for you, to ensure your safety. Overall, the Cagayan de Oro River is classified as class III to III+, pertaining to the various classes of whitewater rapids, from Class I being easy to Class VI which defies the limits of navigation. Class III rapids on the other hand make for exciting runs, because of relatively big yet manageable waves and irregular terrains A whitewater rafting tour in CDO is one you will not forget for years and you would definitely want your friends to experience as well. This tour is best experienced in groups. Otherwise, our travel agency can arrange for
MAPWA NATURE PARK
You only need to travel 30 minutes from the city to get to Maslag and visit the 2,500-hectare Mapa Nature Park. What is good about the place is that it offers something for those who want a lazy time relaxing in a quiet, natural environment but most importantly that it offers loads of fun who those who seek out adventure. Mapwa Nature Park features a zipline activity, which is a staple in most of the adventure tour spots in the Country. However, what sets Mapwa Nature Park apart from the rest is the availability of group activities like Canyoneering, an Ecological Trek, Obstacle Course, and a Horseback Trail Ride. The Canyoneering and River Trek are super extreme, and we caution those who wish to do the activity to gear up, dress down and be ready to get wet and physical. Do not ever make a mistake of leaving your waterproof camera behind. If you are up for fun and adventure, Mapwa Nature Park is an awesome find near Cagayan de Oro City.
GARDENS OF MALASAG
Before or after having your fill of adventure at Mapwa Nature Park, you can head to Gardens of Malasag which is also near the area, 30 minutes away from Cagayan de Oro City. It is maintained by the Philippine government, and apart from being a place to visit when in CDO, the Gardens of Malasag also has accommodation facilities for those who wish to stay away from the city. Take in the panoramic view of the Macajalar Bay after you walk around the area. A map will be provided to you, so you will not get lost while exploring the property. The Gardens of Malasag also features an ethnic museum, which features various ethnic tribes in the Mindanao Region
CDO FOOD AND SOUVENIRS
Food and souvenirs are technically not “places to visit” but while in CDO, these are the “must-try’s”, apart from the adventure activities available: VJANDEEP, which is originally from Camiguin—the famous pastels that just melt in your mouth. Vjandeep pastels now carry a lot of products apart from the usual yema. The products are packed well and in a box, ideal for pasalubong. SLERs Ham—yum yum yum. This used to be a kitchen-based business. It’s expansion tells you there must be something really good and right with the way they are “hamming” it. While you are busy hunting down souvenirs and pasalubongs, do dine in any of CDO’s restaurants serving ostrich or crocodile meat. Be exotic in this seeming laid back place that offers adventure, culture and nature all rolled into one.
CAGAYAN DE ORO TO CAMIGUIN BY LAND AND BOAT
As of 2014, there are no direct flights from Manila to Camiguin. Those coming from Manila should visit Camiguin via Cagayan de Oro. However, those in Cebu are more blessed as they can access Camiguin from Cebu by air or boat. Those from Bohol can also visit Camiguin via boat from Jagna.
To get to Camiguin from CDO, one can take Ocean Jet Fast Craft, which runs for 2 hours. However, trips can be quite intermittent and are limited. Green Earth Tours and Travel is an official travel agent for Ocean Jet, and we can issue you your e-tickets, hassle-free. The best way for now however is to travel from CDO to Balingoan for one hour. Balingoan has a pier and this is where boats bound to Camiguin dock. From Balingoan to Camiguin’s Benoni Port, it will take another hour of float.
Upon reaching Camiguin from CDO, these are the tour spots you can visit and enjoy: The Camiguin Countryside Tour features: J&A Fish Pen, Taguines Lagoon Zipline, Katibawasan Falls, Sunken Cemetery, Ostrich Farm, Old Vulcan Walkway, Church Ruins, Soda Water Pool, Sto. Nino Cold Spring, Ardent Hotspring. Those who wish to go island hopping may can visit White Island, the Giant Clam Sanctuary as well as Mantigue Island.
CAGAYAN DE ORO TO BUKIDNON
Travel from Cagayan do Oro to Bukidnon means you need to travel approximately 128 kilometers by land. This translates to around two hours and a half plus of travel. Is it worth it? You bet it is!
There are many attractions one can enjoy when in Bukidnon. The most popular would be the Dahilayan Adventure Park, which features Asia’s longest zipline. While Dahilayan has some food stalls for those who wish to take their lunch in the area, the patient ones can travel to the del Monte Plantation, which is one of the world’s largest pineapple plantations. Enjoy a hearty meal of succulent steaks and fresh juices as you relive your other adventures in Bukidnon.
If on a 3D2N tour package, Dahilayan and the Del Monte Plantation may be visited on Day 1 if your flight to Cagayan de Oro arrives early in the morning so that you can free up your 2nd day with other CDO Tours, notably the Whitewater Rafting Tour or the Mapwa Adventure Tour. Similarly, if coming from Camiguin on your way back to Camiguin, you can do a side trip to Dahilayan if time permits.
CAGAYAN DE ORO TO ILIGAN
Travel from Cagayan de Oro to Iligan takes close to two hours, as you need to traverse 90 kilometers by land. Iligan has 20 plus waterfalls in total, earning for it the moniker “City of Waterfalls”. Maria Cristina Falls is the grandest of them all. Maria Cristina Falls is 98-meters high and is Iligan’s main source of electric power.
Another unique spot to visit in Iligan is the Macaraeg-Macapagal Ancestral House, the only house in the Philippines which served as a home to 2 of the country’s presidents—Diosdado Macapaga and Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.
The Iligan Anahaw Amphitheater is the largest of its class in the country, which can hold up to5,000 spectators per event. It is called the Jewel of Iligan, majestic amidst the green anahaw leaves that serve as its backdrop.
On your way back to Cagayan de Oro from Iligan, do not forget to stash some of Cheding’s Peanuts and Peanut Butter as pasalubong. Chedings has been churning out peanuts for more than 40 years. Don’t miss it.