Monday, September 23, 2013

An Overture to My Northern Mindanao Adventure

In the tragic course that befell Zamboanga for two weeks now, Mindanao have been placed on the boil with issues concerning safety.  With a 495.4 km distance from the city of Zamboanga to Cagayan De Oro, with at least  seven hours of drive, the conflict in Zamboanga is far from affecting the peace in the northern part of Mindanao including Camigiun Islands.

During the heat of the conflict I was on a four-day trip to Camiguin-Cagayan de Oro-Bukidnon.  No trace of conflict from what is menacing to Zamboanga.   What beckoned was the adoring beauty of the islands, the tranquil and invigorating experiences and the modern-day development of that part of the country.

The top photo was taken from Camiguin airport as a welcome party to tourists and aircraft passenger from Cebu.

View my post about my Camiguin Island tour at the link below:

Camiguin: The Anticipated Interlude

Our trip in Cagayan de Oro is such gawk-worthy, with easily accessible tourist destinations, exceptional hotel accommodation and a vast choice for food that are very affordable.
The 2011 typhoon Sendong and the city bombing have put Cagayan de Oro in devastation.  Now, after two years from the said typhoon and months since the threatening city incidence, it seemed there are no more traces from the debilitating occurrences. Of course, tragedies as such is still painful to remember for the Cagay-anons.  The city actually has a memorial wall for losses during Sendong.

Read on my CDO escapade at the link below.

Cagayan de Oro: The City of Golden Friendship

In the last day of our four-day familiarization trip, we chanced upon these locals lighting up some candles for their loved ones who died during the calamity.

But there is a lot more to the trip, something that have changed me a lot, which add to my character, which I faced with saved up courage.  I was finally able to conquer my fear from zip lining and riding the rapids.

Let me share you the itinerary we used for my first Northern Mindanao which I had shared with some media people and officers from Dept. of Tourism.

First Day

05:00 a.m.    Group assembly at NAIA Terminal 2 (after checking-in)
06:00            Departure Manila-Cebu Phil. Airlines
07:15            ETA Cebu
09:35            Cebu-Camiguin via Cebu Pacific Air
10:15           ETA Camiguin
10:30           Proceed to the Provincial Capitol
                    Courtesy Call on Governor Jurdin Jesus M. Romualdo
11:15          Leave for Bahay Bakasyunan
                    Check-in / Freshen Up
12:00 nn       Lunch at hotel
1:00 p.m.     Depart for Brgy. San Roque, Mahinog
                   Boat Ride to Mantigue Island (depends on weather condition)
2:20            Boat Ride to Brgy. San Roque, Mahinog
2:40            Mobile to Taguines Lagoon for:
                    Camiguin Zipline, Mahinog Aqua Sports
3:25            Leave for Sto. Niño Cold Spring Resort
4:00            Experience the cold spring
4:30            Mobile to Bura Soda Water Park
5:30            Proceed to Brgy. Bonbon, Catarman
                   Visit the Old Church Ruins, Sunken Cemetery, Walkway to the Old Volcano
7:00           Dinner at Ardent Spring Resort
                  Tour of the facilities
9:00 Return to the hotel / Rest Over Night

                   Read about my Camiguin experience HERE.

Second Day

5:00 a.m.   Coffee then leave for White Island Tour
6:30           Breakfast  at Hotel
                  Check Out
8:00           Leave for Benoni Wharf
                  Board RORO ferry to Balingoan Port
09:00         On board the ferry to Balingoan Port
10:15 Arrival / Transfer to Cagayan de Oro City
12:00 nn Lunch @ Fil Me Up Restaurant
1:00 p.m. Check-in at Seda Centrio Hotel
1:45          Mobile to Cagayan de Oro City Hall
2:10          Courtesy Call on  Mayor Oscar S. Moreno office
2:45          Cagayan de Oro City Tour (City Developments):
                 Limketkai Hotel Construction Site/ Paseo del Rio Construction Site/
                 Tune Hotel/ Pure Gold/ Seda Centrio Hotel
6:00          Dinner
                Back to Hotel
                Rest Over Night

Third Day

6:30 a.m. Breakfast at the Hotel
7:30         Macahambus Cave tour
8:30          White Water Rafting with Bugsay
1:00 p.m. Mobile to Del Monte Pineapple Plantation
2:00          Mobile to Dahilayan Adventure Park Manolo Fortich, Bukidnon
6:30         Dinner
                 Kagay-anon Restaurant (ostrich delicacy)
9:30         Back to Hotel
                 Rest Over Night

Fourth Day

6:30 a.m.   Breakfast at the Hotel
8:00 AM – 12:00 NN Cagayan de Oro City Tour (History, Culture, Arts and Products)
Plaza Divisoria
St. Augustine Cathedral
Gaston Park
La Castilla Museum, Liceo de Cagayan University
Museo de Oro, Xavier University
Pasalubong Center, Monster Kitchen, Vjandep
General McArthur Marker
Museum of Three Cultures
12:00 nn Lunch at Panagatan Seafood Restaurant
1:30 p.m. Mobile to Laguindingan Airport
3:00          Check-in at airport
4:20          ETD Cagayan de Oro City – Manila
5:50         ETA Manila (NAIA Terminal 3)

This is just a guide you can use when planning to do the same feat.  One thing I will make sure of though when you try the same Northern Mindanao tour - Adventure is more fun in Mindanao!

Deets on the trip will be updated now and then for there are so many things that needed to be written and shared about the trip.


  1. I have been wanting to visit Camiguin but was not able when I was still in the PH. I almost made though last year.

  2. I've been to Cagayan De Oro but missed the visit to Camiguin and Bukidnon. I hope I visit this place too.

  3. I have to do a lot more traveling in the Philippines when I get back. This is a wonderful guide to those who want to visit Camiguin.

  4. Ayyy the water rafting activity! Gusto ko siya itry with my friends :) Soon!

  5. This trip is a big proof that overall, Mindanao is peaceful and they can still enjoy the trip without being harmed. :D

  6. It's nice to know that you still had a good time in Mindanao, despite the past and present predicaments that are happening there right now (with CDO and with its neighbor, Zamboanga). And I salute you for your recent take on conquering your fears. :) I've tried both a few years back. But if there was one thing that I would like to try again, that would be the Zipline in Bukidnon, and not the river rafting in CDO. :) Anyway, I suddenly missed Camiguin.

  7. CDO is in my travel list. Camiguin seems a must-see place too.


I would love to hear your thoughts on my post, care for a comment?