Located in Cagayan de Oro City
It is the third largest river in Mindanao (first is the Rio Grande Mindanao in SOCCSKARGEN; second is the Agusan River in CARAGA). It is also the main tributary for the Cagayan de Oro City’s most popular tourist activity – White Water Rafting.
White Water Rafting in Cagayan de Oro City began in 1995, when a group of outdoor enthusiasts came back from a trip abroad and were inspired and challenged to create a river activity on the city’s namesake waterway. Back then, the rafting excursion lasted for more than five (5) hours, with a break for lunch in the middle. Today, Cagayan de Oro City boasts of being the White Water Rafting Capital of the Philippines, due to the fact that the Cagayan River has adequately flowing water all-year-round.
Five companies operate the rafting activity: Bugsay, First Rafting Adventure, Great White Rafting, Kagay Journey and Red Rafts, each with their own signature color of raft: blue, yellow, white, beige/green, and red, respectively. They are mandated by a Memorandum of Agreement to charge the same rates (as of December 31, 2019) for the different levels, inclusive of round trip transportation from the city, rafting equipment (rafts and paddles), safety equipment (helmets and life jackets), river guides certified in rescue and first response:
- Beginner or Basic Level (lower section) = Php 1,200/person
- 12 kilometers river stretch with 14 major rapids (Class II-III) @ 3 hours actual run
- Advanced I (mid-section) = Php 1,800/person
- 16 kilometers river stretch with 21 major rapids (Class II-IV) @ 4-5 hours actual run
- Advanced II (upper section) = Php 2,500/person
- 19 kilometers river stretch with 28 major rapids (Class III-IV) @ 5-6 hours actual run
A minimum of six (6) rafters — may be in the same group or a combination of several groups — for the activity to run. Documentation (pictures and videos) is provided, at a separate minimal cost per group.
How to Take a Tour There:
By Private Means – Contact: La Montaña Tours and Vans (a local tour operations agency) via Email: firstname.lastname@example.org / Name of Tour: The CDO Experience / CDO Rafting Adventure
By Public Means (DIY) – Contact any of the five companies through their websites to arrange what level you would like to experience and when you want to take the activity. After paying the designated amount, the company will ask for your contact number and provide directions on how to get to their pick-up point within the city.
Tour Guide’s Note: It’s more fun in the Philippines, even in the New Normal! All my photos were taken before the pandemic, so if you want updated ones, come and travel with me next time!