Cagayan De Oro, Philippines – City Guide – Overview
Cagayan de Oro (CDO) is the second biggest city in Mindanao Island. With a population of 1 million people and growing, I would consider this a medium size city with a small-town feel. The airport is somewhat far away from the city center with a 45-minute shuttle ride. Cagayan de Oro is not as safe as Davao, so I would be more on the alert when walking around by yourself. There’s not many tourist things to do other than white water rafting. Cagayan de Oro is known as a good place for rafting, so if you’re into that you can check that out.
The local language is Cebuano also called Visaya, but everyone speaks basic to fluent English or Tagalog.
Try and find a hotel or AirBnB anywhere in this area.
I stayed at the Red Planet Hotel which is a cheap budget hotel but still one of the better hotels in the city. Not many AirBnB choices due to the size of the city. The location of the hotel is good since its next to the brand-new SM Downtown Cagayan de Oro mall and the SM Premiere. But aside from that, it’s still a 2-star budget hotel. If there were better hotel or AirBnB options I would rather go for that.
Staying in the city center is good because you’re near the lifestyle district which is an outdoor plaza filled with bars, restaurants and shops. Good place to be on any day. I will talk more about the lifestyle district later on.
I only used Grab and I never had a problem.
The Local Filipina Girls
They are similar to Davao because its still in Mindanao island. But Cagayan de Oro is smaller and less touristy than Davao. So being a foreigner will be even more exotic to these girls because they don’t see them as much or at all.
But – some of them could be shy because they have never been with a foreigner before.
The following spots should be your main targets:
- SM Downtown CDO Mall
- Ayala Mall
- Lifestyle District
Cagayan De Oro is smaller than Davao. The nightlife is even more limited. Unfortunately for me I was here during the weekday and it was summer break for the universities.
Many of the college girls went back to their province. So, my night life options were very limited. I think it will be better to visit when school is in session and on the weekend. The best area for nightlife is in the lifestyle district. It’s a new area with modern development, many locals go here to eat, drink and party.
Pulse Live Music Venue
Super loud club can barely hear yourself think. Many of the locals come here. Crowded every day. Working class type of people. Watch out for hookers as I encountered a few asking for money. Hard press to find a normal girl here on the weekdays. Maybe on the weekends some normal girls come here. If not, you may have to try and convince one of these pros to sleep with you for free. It’s possible but not easy.
Next to Pulse. Same type of crowd and vibe as Pulse. Watch out for hookers as well.
In the Lifestyle District. The Lifestyle district is a new and modern plaza that has many bars, restaurants and live band performances. Kardinal is the only club in the Lifestyle District, but it was empty when I was there.
The staff tells me its better on the weekend and when school is in session. Hooray for me!
LIV Super Club
It was closed when I was there. Even though its normally closed on the weekdays, it’s usually the best place to club on the weekends. The locals tell me that this club goes through many management changes, which explains why it’s periodically closed for weeks or months. But when it’s open it’s open! I’ve been told it’s the biggest, nicest and most popular night club in town. Cebu also has a LIV club, located in Mandaue City.
Somewhere Else Bar
Located near the Lifestyle District. This is my favorite bar in Cagayan de Oro . It was the best spot I could find on the weekday that had no pros. The first floor is a bar and the second floor is a small club. They play a good mix of old school hip-hop, Top 40, EDM etc.
Good spot to start the night or the whole night for that matter. Good ratio of girls. Only issue is that it’s a small place. So even though there’s not a lot of people, it still feels suffocating because of how small the place is.
In the same building as “Somewhere Else Bar”. Chill restaurant/bar. Good for dates.
Vicente Dela Park
This park is in the city center. They have a big heritage monument that’s worth a photo op. Other than that, there’s really not much to see here.
Cagayan de Oro nightlife on the weekday is slow and it’s even more dead when school is out of session. “Somewhere Else Bar” was the best place I found on the weekday. My recommendation on this place would be to come on the weekend and when school is in session. Google the university schedule and plan accordingly.
My ideal night game schedule would be:
Sunday – Thursday: Go to “Somewhere Else Bar” to start the night. If that place turns up empty, then “Pulse” is your last resort.
Friday – Saturday: LIV (If it’s open), Kardinal and Somewhere Else Bar.
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