Top 10 Outdoor Adventures in Cagayan de Oro City - BEST SPOTS PH



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Cagayan de Oro City is the gateway to Northern Mindanao and considered to be the City of Golden Friendship. It is also known as the entry point of outdoor adventures making it as the premier whitewater destination in the country, henceforth a best hotspot to get your adrenaline fix.

As one wise man said, “Travel is all about experiencing the best of what a destination has to offer, and in many cases, the best of what a destination can offer is adventure.”

Need a little outdoor inspiration? Now get off your shoes and get out there because summer has begun!

Practical Shooting might be a classic activity for others but for some, firing with real guns is a new wave outdoor experience in the city. Fortunate enough, Cagayan de Oro has one to put forward. Located in Zone 9 Anhawon, Bulua, Cagayan de Oro, the Northern Mindanao Practical Shooting Associations, Inc. (NMPSA) Firing Range is a tourist attraction in the sports of firearm shooting.

Before indulging to the shooting experience, a lecture from the Range Instructor will be discussed about the Rules of Firearm Safety, Fundamentals of Shooting, Dry Firing, Live Shooting, and Unloading the bullets of Firearms.

You might also want to check out this article:  A Great Panorama of Cagayan de Oro at Night

Skimboarding is a sport similar to surfing (a smaller counterpart to a surfboard without fins) which takes place near the shore. Most people know skimboarding as “that thing you do on the sand,” but this fastest growing watersport is more than just “that thing”. Take the 15-minute ride going to Apple Tree Resort and Hotel in Opol, the closest municipality of Cagayan de Oro and glide across the water’s surface in order to convene with the incoming, breaking waves and ride it back to shore. 

Now that’s the thing!

Photo courtesy by: Earl Ryan  Janubas. Photo used with permission.
Mountain Biking is an individual sport that requires endurance, core strength and balance, it is the sport of riding bicycles off-road, often over rough terrain, using specially designed mountain bikes. Luckily, this outdoor activity is sprouting in the city. Multiple categories can be experienced from trail riding to downhill, dirt jumping to trials or even free-ride.
Photo courtesy by: Earl Ryan Janubas. Photo used with permission.
Photo courtesy by: Earl Ryan Janubas. Photo used with permission.

Walking may be one of the most popular outdoor recreational activities in the world but Hill walking might somehow differ from that activity. Yes, it might be as easy as putting one foot in front of the other but despite its simplicity; one has to experience walking in mountainous areas which sometimes involves scrambling or somewhere between hiking and rock climbing where hands must be used in the ascent.

These off-trail trips or strenuous walks can be experienced within the boundary of Mapawa Nature Park starting from Barangay Indahag.

It might be a bit similar to the Whitewater River Rafting adventure but it can also be separated from that as River Kayaking is the use of a kayak for moving across water. This is one of the most adrenaline pumping activities in the mountainous terrains and river beds. If you’re not already crazy for whitewater rafting, then you might want to try this out by yourself. Remember, Kayaking is an intricate dance of strokes, maneuvers and balance between person, boat and paddle.


Getting in touch with Mother Nature is one way to unwind our senses and this could be experienced by taking a 30-50-minute ecological trek into the wilderness of Mapawa Nature Park. 

It hosts more than 200 tree species which include a 250-year old White Lauaan tree and a 400-year old Dao tree! Aside of the aforementioned trees, one can also observed the abundance of wildlife. 

Bird watching has something for you to experience and if you’re lucky enough, you can observe the Rufous Paradise Flycatcher (Terpsiphone Cinnamomea), Silvery Kingfisher, Mindanao Broadbill, Red-bellied Pitta (Erythropitta Erythrogaster), Philippine Drongo-Cuckoo (Surniculus velutinus), Hooded Pitta (Pitta sordida), Brown-throated Sunbird (Anthreptes malacensis), Guaiabero (Bolbopsittacus lunulatus), and Black Faced Coucal flying around.

Photo at the Right Side: Rufous Paradise Flycatcher. Photo courtesy by: Fayeed Tan. Used with permission.
The Mindanao Broadbill. Photo courtesy by Fayeed Tan. Used with permission.
The Black-Faced Coucal. Photo courtesy by Fayeed Tan. Used with permission.

For birding tours, contact Mr Dodong Ronnel Paglinawan at 0936-206-6635.

Who would have thought that the City of Golden Friendship has a lot to offer especially the waterfalls? Yes, Cagayan de Oro has more than a dozen recognized waterfalls inside its natural domain. 

While everyone has different reasons for hunting waterfalls, the city would be a great playground for Waterfalling as it is a new kind of outdoor adventure where one explores the scenic waterfalls of a destination. 

Visit all the 12 waterfalls of Mapawa Nature Park including the 65 feet Mintugsok Falls or go as far as Sitio Palalan, Tablon to stare at the 3 step of falls at approximately 50 meters apart of the Palalan Waterfalls.


Exploration of caves takes us into a world much different from the above ground, a world of darkness surrounded by rock and mud.   - Unknown”

Traditionally known as spelunking, Caving is the recreational pastime of exploring wild cave systems. Blessed with abundant nature, Cagayan de Oro has three identified caverns- Monigue Cave also known as the Mambuaya Cave, Huluga Cave, and Macahambus Cave. Explore the boundless beauty of Monigue Cave and witness the beautiful sparkling formations of stalactites and stalagmites which take 50-60 years to form an inch.

Route-finding and enhancing your wilderness travel skills? Now, this is for you! These two activities are like the two sides of a coin- Either you choose one journey from the other, you still experience the excitement of the other.
Canyoneering also known as Canyoning or Canyon Hiking may not be new to the city but this adventure may include other outdoor activities such as walking, scrambling, climbing, jumping, abseiling (rappelling) and swimming.  It is more often associated with technical descents- those that require abseils (rappels) and rope-work, technical climbing or down-climbing, technical jumps, and/or technical swims.

Gear up and brave the five falls challenge! Conquer 5 out of 12 waterfalls in Mapawa Nature Park by canyoneering, rappel alongside a 65 feet waterfall, 20 feet natural slide, 30 feet jump and of course, trekking the 5 river beds of the vicinity.



All year round, countless travelers and adventure seekers visit Cagayan de Oro and have been quenching their thirst of excitement for this adventure. Consider as one of the most popular recreational activities in the country, Whitewater River Rafting is the adventure paradise of thrill seekers in Cagayan de Oro. The good news is, you don’t really need technical skills or professional gears to try this adventure as 9 different courses are being offered. From Beginner Course with 14 Major Rapids to Advance 1 Course with 21 Major Rapids. From Advance 2 Course to the Extreme of all Courses. Trust me, all you need is a faith, strong legs and a good cardio.

For City Tour inquiries, kindly contact me directly through this number: 
0906-6577-669 or via e-mail at bestspotsph(at)yahoo(dot)com, 
and/or countclementdampal(at)gmail(dot)com.

The City Council just recently approved (March 18, 2016) the ordinance no. 13052-2016, amending Article IV, Section 1 of Ordinance No. 11087-2008, otherwise known as the Whitewater Rafting Ordinance, pertaining to the new rates of the river rafting and rename the old routes as well as open new routes.

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