“Don’t dwell on what went wrong. Instead, focus on what to do next. Spend your energies on moving forward toward finding the answer.”
It has always been my plan as a solo traveler to explore new places from different provinces in Philippines. Whenever I look at the map, I would always wonder what will be my next adventures and how can I help promote local tourism. I have already been to the island of Camiguin however, most of the travelers tend to go directly to Cagayan de Oro or Iligan City and not consider this underrated municipality.
The Municipality of the Mendina is a 4th class municipality in the province of Misamis Oriental. It is located along the coast line of Gingoog Bay and only 22.8 km away from Balingoan Port which is the entry point to Camiguin island. The municipality is known to be one best diving spots in the country.
How to get to Medina, Misamis Oriental
From Manila, take a plane going to Laguindingan, Misamis Oriental. There are daily flights through Cebu Pac or PAL then take a bus going to Bulua Terminal, Cagayan de Oro. From Bulua Terminal, there are jeepneys directly going to Agora Terminal. From Agora, you need ride a bus going to Medina through Butuan or Gingoog route for 2.5 hours.
From Butuan, you can just take a bus ride going to Cagayan de Oro City or Zamboanga then inform the driver to drop you off to Medina with travel time of 2 hours.
From Camiguin Island, you need to take a boat ride or RoRo from Benoni Port to Balingoan Port for 1.5 hours then ride jeep or bus going to Medina with travel time of 30 minutes.
I arrived at Medina around 4:30 pm and went directly to the tourism office to ask assistance in where I can stay overnight. There are a lot of beach resorts in the municipality from high end to cheaper ones depending in your accommodation preference.
One of their high end resort is the Duka Bay Resort located at Bgry. Duka. The resort has been operating for years and one of the best resorts in Misamis Oriental. There are also water activities that you can do such as diving, snorkeling, skin diving, kayaking or riding a banana boat. You check their official website and facebook account for details at https://www.facebook.com/dukabay/ or http://www.dukabayresort.com/
I stayed overnight at Resort De Alberto located at Bgry. Bulwa which is 1.7 KM away from Duka Bay Resort. The resort offers quality accommodation with spacious rooms good for couples, family or a group. They have also function galleries for seminars and other occasions. The resort is known to have a huge pool area and has a beach front for tent pitching if you opted to camp. However, the sand is different compared to other resorts. The resort also has a restaurant that serves different types of local food. Their accommodation comes with a free complimentary breakfast. I personally recommend this resort if you wanted a quiet place to stay but still able to enjoy their amenities. For more information, you can check and like their facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Resort-De-Alberto-Medina-Misamis-Oriental/163427653825142
But if you are a budget traveler, there are also cheaper resorts in the area but most of them are for day tour activities only. I highly suggest that you stay in a motel in the town proper and negotiate with a local boatman for your water activity the following day.
Most of the fishermen residing the near coastal areas of the Medina are tourist guides. They assist all travelers for their water activities. They own small motor boats and just need to pay them directly. There is no way for you to do island hopping in the area because there are no islands across Gingoog Bay. If you are a not into scuba diving, your activities will only be snorkeling at the marine sanctuary, swimming and beach bumming.
Medina has the cheapest snorkeling fee out of all the places I have visited. You do not need to the rent the entire boat but only pay a specific amount. If you are in a group, you will only pay Php30 ($ 0.581 / € 0.476) or Php100 ($ 1.936 / € 1.585) for solo travelers for 30 minutes.
The boatman will bring you to the marine sanctuary where you can feed the fishes or do snorkeling to have a close encounter with the fishes. You also need to buy breads in any local stores near the area as they do not provide fish food.
The LGU together with BFAR (Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources) and other non- government agencies have started to educate the locals about marine preservation and has strictly implemented a “no fishing” policy in their sanctuaries.
What was interesting and fascinating about the seafloor of Medina near Duka Bay is the presence of an ocean vent releasing spring cold waters. It was my first time to encounter and I was really amazed that beneath is a small crevasse where spring water continuously flows out towards the surface.
At first, I thought it was like a hydrothermal vent where an active volcano might be present but according to the locals, it is a small passage underneath the corals from the spring reservoir in the mountain where the cold water is coming from.
My total experience in Medina, Misamis Oriental was awesome. I realized that this municipality is definitely underrated when it comes to the tourism exposure and deserves to be visited. The local government has been focusing in improving the tourism aspect to attract more visitors. It will not only boost their economy but it will also create jobs to help the people of Medina. I would like to thank LGU Medina and the Tourism Office for giving me the opportunity to feature your municipality.
Edan Mark Vosotros ( Municipal Tourism Coordinator) – 09778055120
- Bus Fare – Php100 (Iligan to Cagayan de Oro)
- Jeep Fare – Php13 (Bulua Terminal to Agora Terminal)
- Bus Fare – Php205 (Cagayan de Oro to Medina)
- Snorkeling Fee – Php100 (solo for 30 minutes)