Just after my 3-day trip to Bohol, Me, and fellow travel bloggers, Eric and Sinjin joined up our travel itineraries when we met in Cagayan de Oro, Misamis Oriental. I was really looking forward for this trip since it was my first time to be in Mindanao. We had planned on commuting from Cagayan de Oro to Ozamiz City, Misamis Occidental with a sidetrip to Marawi on the eve of the Eid ul-Fitr or the day which marks the end of the Ramadan.

Cagayan de Oro – Misamis Oriental

We spent only one night in Cagayan de Oro, so we concentrated most of our tour within the downtown area. I’ve read a lot about Cagayan de Oro’s promising rise as an investment haven in the Visayas-Mindanao area. I was definitely interested to see some of the new developments in addition to the historical sites in the city. I had my first taste of Ostrich meat at Cagay-an Restaurant. It tasted just like beef, which was quite a let down since it wasn’t so easy on the wallet.

View of the ongoing Laguindingan International Airport during the Cebu to Cagayan de Oro flight

Misamis Oriental Provincial Capitol

Cagayan de Oro Cathedral

Gardens of Malasag Eco-Tourism Village

Great view from Malasag Eco-Tourism Village

Ostrich meat at Cagay-an Restaurant

Plaza Divisoria at Night

My Biggest Travel Mishap in Marawi!

It was the eve of the Eid ul-Fitr during our visit to Marawi. Traffic in the city was at a standstill as everyone trooped to the city to buy food and other stuff needed to celebrate the end of Ramadan (the month of fasting). It was so hot and the traffic / noise was very stressful, I couldn’t wait to get out of our van transport. We saw a very interesting Mosque near our drop-off in the downtown area. When it was time to take out my camera for a photo, sweat started to roll down my head. I had realized that I absentmindedly left my sling bag inside the van. In panic, I rushed back to the drop-off point but the chaos of the street had already shrouded any sign of the van. I was so scared because my sling bag contained my most important valuables including all my cash, atm card, and camera.

Eric and Sinjin accompanied me to the terminal hoping to retrieve my lost bag. When we got there, I sought the help of the people at the terminal but they couldn’t readily do so because we didn’t take note of any specific information that could identify the van or the driver. I had also left my cellphone inside the sling bag. We tried miscalling my number countless times. There was no answer at first but one call, finally, did push through! The people in the terminal were able to identify the driver and informed us that they call him as “mufti,” a title which is equivalent (in Mulim society) to a pastor or a deacon. Much to our relief, the honest driver returned my bag and all of its contents back before the end of the day.

Ozamiz City – Misamis Occidental

Continuing on with the trip, we went on a daytrip to Dolphin Island in the Misamis Occidental Aquamarine Park. This dolphin rescue center has been stirring quite a buzz for offering visitors the chance to swim with dolphins and other marine animals. We also got to visit the historic Fort Santiago in Ozamiz City and the old Jimenez Church, one of the few remaining Spanish Colonial Churches in Mindanao.

Swimming with the dolphins in Misamis Occidental Aquamarine Park

Fort Santiago (Fuerte de la Concepcion y Del Truinfo) in Ozamiz City

Belltower of the Jimenez Church

Stay subscribed for more photos, stories, and the itinerary details. This post is part of the Central Visayas and Northern Mindanao Multi-Series.