a seeker in search of Easter Eggs

Country > Philippines > Cagayan de Oro
Date > 2013 > April
Activity > Counter Culture | Traveling

Counter Culture Traveling

Summer Peace Festival 2013 at Cagayan de Oro Apr 26-28, 2013

Summer Peace Festival 2013 at Cagayan de Oro

Location Google Map: Ki Bathala Garden, Cagayan de Oro, Philippines

Counter Culture
I was tagged on Facebook about a counter-culture event happening right in my backyard at Ki Bathala Garden near Cagayan de Oro - the Summer Peace Festival. Like many of the grassroots events happening across the country, focus was on music, culture, nature, spirituality, freedom, art, peace and yoga. It got my attention. I haven't been to a local event like this. Images of Woodstock filled my mind...of course, tempered by the contraints of culture, church and government. I was equally curious how interactive, how fluid and how open such a local scene would be like.

Additionally, the counter-culture scene is where I am in my elements. Whether it's Burning Man in Nevada or a regional 3-day outdoor rave like the annual OM Festival in Ontario, I find time and make an effort to be there to soak-in all the good vibe that's there for the taking (and giving).

Summer Peace Festival 2013 at Cagayan de Oro
a gathering by the fire

As an event highlight, a figure from Woodstock will grace the event - Fantuzzi. Yes, he was there at ground zero in 1969 where the iconic festival defining the counter culture all happened. I've always felt I was born too late for Woodstock. At least I could talk to someone who was actually there.

One Sound Stage, One Bonfire, One Eating Area
I've attended festivals with several sound stages, many bonfires each offering its own kind of drum circle. These are things that happen when the numbers inflate. It still works, but you lose the intimacy. Here at SPF, I have no doubt the numbers will rise over the years. But at least, for now, the event is 'contained' enough to be intimate. There was no fragmentation. You all come to the same sound stage, same bonfire and eat together in one area. That was a nice touch.

Like many festivals that have come before this, I come away from it with lingering thoughts about people I've connected with. Yes, I did connect with a few interesting characters but there were lapses too when I couldn't feel the Flow from others. I'm sure it's me. But from a people perspective, I relish my highlights as follows:

Todd GrannisTodd G.
The last time I saw a mirror-image of my thoughts, sentiments, persuasion and insight from another person was still in 2003 at Burning Man when I met Johannes Frazier. He would say something that mirrored my thoughts exactly and I would say something that would resonate the same way for him. This just went on and on and it was uncanny. We even had the same superhero - the Silver Surfer! We parted as soul brothers. At SPF, I met Todd and we hit it off as we talked about things covering a wide spectrum - the Federal Reserve's fractional monetary system, quantum mechanics, spirituality, fitness, life, women, consciousness, etc. We only differed in one aspect - he was a Superman fan. I bumped into him again as I was leaving the event, as he was leaving too, so we rode the jeep together where I ended up being his breakfast guest. Later that night, as I went to a restaurant for the first time, he was also there! In Casablanca parlance, "This is a start of a beautiful friendship".

ReneeRene K.
I just squeezed myself into a table and went on a spontaneous conversation with the guy beside me, and it was a while until I realized he was the owner of the farm. I told him it was like attending Woodstock and I got to talk to a guy who happens to be Max Yasgur (the farm owner of Woodstock). We both had a laugh. He was a hippie whose heart was in the right place. He is lucid about his thoughts. He said a few things...carefully chosen words, I guess, that came from a profound experience. After that, I told him I would support his efforts through my web machinery...on a no-cost basis...a hippie kind of love. He is good energy and it's that kind of energy I want within my orbit.

Yes, he was at Woodstock and had been in the counter-culture scene the last 40 years, attending festivals, raves, be-in gatherings, etc. Through his rich life experience in the hippie world that spans decades, I fantasize that he was at ground zero during the most significant moments that shaped, mobilized and saw the demise of the counterculture movement. Perhaps he smoked with the Grateful Dead, attended Timothy Leary's turn-on, tune-in, drop-out psychedelic odyssey, stopped one of the National Guards from shooting peace rally students at the Kent State University, witnessed the Hell's Angels' melee at the Rolling Stones' Altamont concert, slept overnight at Charles Mansion's hippie commune, and attended Live Aid. His thoughts and words are reflective of the idealism of that era - peace, love and harmony.

As much as I admire him for all the things he went through, the skeptic in me couldn't help but speculate, "How can you be doing this for 40 years and still feel it under your skin?". I mean, as poignant and poetic as the song, "Bridge over Troubled Water" is, after Art Garfunkel has sung it a zillion times over the years, does he still feel that song when he sings it? Or you've done it a million times all you need to do is turn on a switch in your head and auto-pilot? I bet even Jesus wanted a break from his divinity and live a day putting his pants on one leg at a time. I mean, how many times can you slap Christ around until he dosn't feel like offering the other cheek anymore?

Kayen BernardoKayen
She was one of the first few I've met at the event. Our conversation spanned many topics and we could have talked for days without having to repeat ourselves. She was gone as magically as she appeared. I got to meet her partner Victor who gave us mortals the coolest soundscape.

I was at the bonfire and began a chat with this Canadian guy. He offered to buy me beer and what followed was a very relaxed conversation about life, struggles and triumph. It wasn't like anyone was proving a point. It just flowed as long as it needed to - perhaps until the glass was empty. I offered to make it my round but we both had things to do.

Ending Thoughts
Counter-culture events...I'm glad it's happening more and more in this country. I believe such off-the-grid experience gives faith in a horizon far broader than what's visible.

Ki Bathala Garden is private property and not open to the public.

--- Gigit (TheLoneRider)
YOGA by Gigit Yoga by Gigit | Learn English Learn English | Travel like a Nomad Nomad Travel Buddy | Donation Bank Donation Bank for TheLoneRider

ps - If you want me to objectively cover your event for this website (product launch, art show opening, ribbon-cutting, etc.), email me.

Leave a comment?

The following people like this:

Reader Comments:

Rene KieferRene Kiefer Philippines
(May 18, 2013) Dear Gigit, you are an eloquent writer and keen observer, your aura was recognized and we love to know that you are around with such good vibes. You know the one love thing om shanti.

NandinniNandinni Philippines
(May 18, 2013) The festival looked so vibrant. Did it feel like Burning Man in Phils?

"Did it feel like Burning Man in Phils?" -- Marie Roman
(May 18, 2013) True, the festival was vibrant. But no, it wasn't like Burning Man. I don't think there is anything on the planet that comes close to it.

AmaliaAmalia Philippines
(May 2, 2013) Thank you so much! You're wonderful!!! Your vibe will be hard to forget. Blessings!

"your vibe will be hard to forget" -- Amalia Misa
(May 2, 2013) ...many people at the event I wish I could have jammed with, beyond a passing 'hello' and 'see you''re one of them I'm sure we'll cross paths again.

Next story:

Goodbye Cagayan de Oro Traveling

Goodbye Cagayan de Oro

(Jan 31 - May 5, 2013) It didn't make sense to leave a place that showered (and continued to shower me with abundance). But I had to ask...what is my point? Is it to find security? NO! Is it to spend life on Easy Street? NO! What I wanted was to let life take me where it takes me...even if it means leaving abundance for something uncertain and unpredictable. Having regain perspective, I packed up...more »»

About Cagayan de Oro

City of CDO About Cagayan de Oro:

Cagayan de Oro, fondly referred to as "City Of Golden Friendship" is the northern gateway to the rest of Mindanao. Because of its stable peace and order situation, commerce is bustling fueled by local and foreign investments.

Cagayan de Oro in a nutshell

  1. Economy - business hub of Northern Mindanao region with its economy largely based on industry, commerce, trade, services and tourism
  2. Climate - no typhoons all year round, tropical climate with an average temperature whole year round of 280C (820F)
  3. Tourist attractions - white water rafting and river trekking, Monigue Cave, Malasag Eco-tourism Village, Macahambus Adventure Park, F.s. Catanico Falls, McArthur Park, Xavier Museum
  4. Land area - 488 square kilometers
  5. Geography - located in northern Mindanao, along a narrow coastal plain with its south flanked by the plateaus and mountains of Bukidnon and Lanao del Norte.
  6. Religion - 87% of the population are Roman Catholic
  7. Education - it is home to 3 private universities, Capitol University, Liceo de Cagayan University and Xavier University - Ateneo de Cagayan and considered the educational capital of the region
  8. Language - the main language is Cebuano with English used primarily for business and in the academe. Tagalog is also spoken.
  9. Shopping - Night Cafe And Market, Limketkai Mall Center, SM City, Robinsons, Gaisano City Mall, Market City, Centrio Ayala Mall and (soon to open) Paseo Mall
  10. Population - 621,000 in 2010
  11. Transportation - one can easily roam around the city by any means of land transportation
  12. Medical Facilities - there are eight major well-equipped private and government-run hospitals

Google Map of Cagayan de Oro

Google Map Cagayan de Oro, Philippines

How to get to Cagayan de Oro

how to get to Cagayan de Oro How to Get to Cagayan de Oro by Air

Cagayan de Oro is major destination in the Philippines and all major airline companies have flights to Cagayan de Oro. CDO arrival is at Lumbia Airport. To get to the city, you can ride a cab (~P300) or take a Carmen-bound jeep (30 mins, P17)

  1. PAL Express - has flights to CDO coming from Manila and Davao
  2. Cebu Pacific - has flights to CDO coming from Manila, Cebu, Iloilo, Bacolod, Davao and Zamboanga
  3. Philippine Airlines - has flights to CDO coming from Manila, Cebu, Bacolod, Davao
  4. TIP: unlike GenSan or Busuanga where you are forced to take a cab or van from the airport, in CDO, you can just walk out of the airport and cross the street and flag down a jeep that will take you straight to downtown CDO, to Cogon Market or Carmen. 45 mins (because they stay long on nearly every major stop, waiting for more passengers), less than P20.
how to get to Cagayan de Oro How to Get to Cagayan de Oro by Land
  • Philtranco - Manila (Pasay) to Cagayan de Oro, 42 hours, non-aircon, departs Manila 10:30am daily
  • Bus - from Malaybalay, P375, aircon 6.5 hours (some road repair)
how to get to Cagayan de Oro How to Get to Cagayan de Oro by Sea
  • Super Ferry 2Go Travel - Manila to CDO, 33 hours

      Accommodation and Rates (as of Mar 2013)

    • Mega Value Class - Php 1500
    • Tourist Class - Php 1350
    • Stateroom for 2 - Php 2400
    • Manila to CDO schedule

  • Negros Navigation - Manila to CDO, 33 hours, Manila (02)554.8777, CDO (088) 856.9114

      Accommodation (as of Mar 2013)

    • Suite Room Accommodation
    • Admiral Cabin Accommodation
    • Business Class Accommodation
    • Tourist Class Accommodation
    • Tatami Economy Class Accommodation
    • Budget Class Accommodation

      Schedule of St. Micheal the Archangel (as of Mar 2013)

    • depart Manila Mondays at 3:00 p.m. - arrive Cagayan de Oro City on Wednesday 4:30 a.m.
    • depart Manila Thursdays at 11:59 p.m. - arrive Cagayan de Oro City on Saturday 9:00 a.m.

  • Sulpicio Lines - Manila to CDO, 33 hours

Cagayan de Oro Blogs


  • Cagayan de Oro: Passing Through Aug 13/20, 2023
  • 2013

  • Goodbye Cagayan de Oro Jan 31 - May 5, 2013
  • Summer Peace Festival 2013 at Cagayan de Oro Apr 26-28, 2013
  • Abundance and Letting Go Apr 5, 2013
  • Cagayan de Oro's Street Masseuse March 24, 2013
  • Cagayan de Oro - the City of Golden Opportunities Mar 19, 2013
  • River Rafting along Cagayan de Oro River Mar 7, 2013
  • Abundance in Cagayan de Oro Feb 10, 2013
  • 2009

  • Exploring Cagayan de Oro Mar 7-9, 2009

  • Brief History
    1. 1622 - the Spaniards set foot on Cagayan de Oro initiating the start of Spanish colonization in the area. This started a war with the Moros who didn't appreciate the locals siding with the Spanish priests
    2. 1739 - moro raids menaced the population of "Little Cagayan" prompting the construction of a fort, Fuerza Real de San Jose
    3. 1870 - Cagayan de Oro, now the capital of Misamis Province, experiences its golden age of arts and literature
    4. 1898 - the 333 years of Spanish rule came to an end giving the Cagayanons a brief taste of independence
    5. 1900 - the Americans arrived and occupied the city thru military might
    6. 1942 - with WWII in full swing, the occupying Americans surrendered to the Japanese Imperial Army
    7. 1945 - the Americans regain control of Cagayan and the region. WWII ended soon thereafter, with the surrender of the Japanese
    8. 2011 - Typhoon Sendong sends torrential flood waters from the mountains into the city wreaking havoc and killing hundreds as the Cagayan de Oro river overflowed. The people demonstrated resilience and tenacity with their rebuilding efforts

    Cagayan de Oro Attractions

    travel tip to Cagayan de Oro Not to be Missed in CDO:

    1. Divisoria - visit CDO on a Friday or Saturday and eat varied BBQ offerings at the famous Night Cafe in Divisoria. It's also great for shopping and getting an outdoor massage (full body massage P100)
    2. River Rafting - see selection below
    3. Dahilayan Adventure Park Dahilayan Adventure Park - 840m zipline, Dropzone (pendulum swing from 120 feet), pedal-ride on a forest canopy, team-building rope course and mountain lodge (read Blog)
    hotels Cagayan de Oro Hotels/Hostels/Pension/Inns/Lodging:
    • Uptown Condotel Uptown Condotel - Cagayan de Oro's first and only luxury condotel, fully furnished, near SM
    • Hotel Conchita Hotel Conchita - central location in Cagayan de Oro, near Ayala Mall, Limketkai Mall and Divisoria
    • De Luxe Hotel De Luxe Hotel - centrally located and short walk from Centrio Ayala Mall, Limketkai Mall and Divisoria
    cagayan de oro outdoor_activities Cagayan de Oro Outdoor Activities:
    • Dahilayan Adventure Park Dahilayan Adventure Park - experience Asia's longest dual zipline and warp-speed to 90kph
    • Sumalsag Cave - technical caving requiring a submerged dive to exit the cave. Sumilao, Bukidnon
    • Sprint Multisport Shop - Corrales corner Ramon Chavez St., 9000 Cagayan de Oro, Philippines
    • Jatico Adventures - zipline, big swing, bungee tramp, zorb, boot camp, Sitio Mahayahay, Bayanga
    • Macahambus Adventure Park - rafting, zipline, rappeling, skybridge, caves, Barangay Bayanga
    cagayan de oro spa Cagayan de Oro Spa:
    • Iaso Spa Iaso Spa - Uptown CDO's refuge for body scrubs, soothing massage, sauna and jacuzzi treat
    • 3K Thai - Capistrano St., 714.918
    • Body Touch - Rosario Strip 856.1519 and Robinsons Mall, Limketkai, 856.3127
    • Fai Thai - Velez St., 714.528
    • La Cabana - CM Recto Ave., 856.4168
    • Nuat Thai - Papa Juanitos Square, Florentino St., 857.5877
    • Palm Day - San Agustin St., 857.2862
    • Red Fern - Velez-Chaves St., 852.1855
    • Sentara - Limketkai Drive, 856.8870
    White Water Rafting in CDO Cagayan de Oro White Water River Rafting Tours:
    • Cagayan de Oro river rafting Great White Rafting Tours - discover pure adrenaline with our professional guides (read Blog)
    • Bugsay Whitewater Rafting - San Agustin - Velez
    • Eco Extreme Rafting Adventure
    • Golden Friendship White Water Rafting
    • Rafting Adventure Philippines - #86 Jongko Bldg. Arch. Hayes Street, CDO
    • Kagay Whitewater Rafting - #21 Pres. Aguinaldo St., Cagayan de Oro City
    • Pinoy Whitewater Tubing - by De Oro Mountain Explorers (DOME)
    beaches in CDO Beaches and Beach Resorts in Cagayan de Oro:
    • Chali Beach Resort - Cugman CDO, GPS Waypoint: N 08 28.334 E 124 42.097, from Xavier University, take RD jeep and ask to be dropped-off at Chali Beach, P13, 30 mins. P100 consumable. Not for beach-swimming, pool (P100 extra), relaxing sea breeze, good food in resto, (the old domain, does not work anymore)
    • Roan Beach Resort - Taboc, Opol, Misamis Oriental, P100 open cottage, P300 big cottage, no entrance fee
    • Apple Tree Resort & Hotel - Brgy. Taboc, Cagayan de Oro (formerly : Lauremar Beach Resort)
    • Yasay Beach Resort - Opol, Misamis Oriental, consumable entrance fee, 45 mins from CDO proper, P40, beach hut P200
    • Marvilla Beach Resort - Opol, Misamis Oriental, consumable entrance fee, 45 mins from CDO proper, P40, beach hut P200
    • San Pedro Beach Resort - Opol, Misamis Oriental, consumable entrance fee, 45 mins from CDO proper, P40, beach hut P200
    • Duka Bay Resort - Medina, Misamis Oriental, shaded by ancestral trees, 7 villas
    • Lyka's Blue Lagoon Beach Resort - Misamis Oriental
    • Acuna Beach - Baloy, Cagayan de Oro
    • Bonbon Beach - Bonbon, Cagayan de Oro
    • White Beach - white sand
    • Baagas Beach - Bonbon, Cagayan de Oro
    heritage sites, landmarks, attractions Attractions:
    • St. Agustine Cathedral and Garden - destroyed several times by fire and bombing, fully rebuilt
    • Cagayan de Oro City Museum - located at the converted Water Tower
    • Gaston Park - gathering place by locals for social interaction
    • Divisoria - popular during Friday and Saturday nights for its Night Cafe alfresco bbq
    • Golden Friendship Park - located along the Divisoria stretch
    • Macahambus Cave, Hill and Gorge - great outdoor trekking and caving, free
    • River Taxi Cruise - starts at Liceo Cagayan University going downstream to the Cagayan de Oro river mouth
    Cagayan de Oro Malls Malls:
    • Ayala Centrio - newest mall to open in CDO; 4 cinemas, C.M Recto Avenue and Corrales Street
    • Gaisano Mall - 6 branches, main mall located in CM Recto Ave., affordable shopping
    • Limketkai Center - 4 cinemas (1 is under renovation), 66,000 square meters of store space
    • SM Cagayan de Oro - 4 cinemas, shopping, restaurants, grocery, etc., located Uptown
    map of CDO Location of Participating Establishments

    link Essential Links:

    CDO >> Davao City by bus

    CDO has 2 bus stations - West Terminal Bulua and East Terminal Agora. For Davao, you have to take a jeep going to Agora.

    1. CDO West Terminal (Bulua) - if you came from Iligan, you would be getting off at trhe Bulua West Terminal. Take a jeep to East Terminal (Agora Terminal), 20 mins, PHP 20
    2. CDO East Terminal (Agora) - take bus going to Davao City, 8 hours, PHP 875. This terminal is open 24 hours and there is always a bus going to Davao - no need to pre-purchase tickets
    3. Davao Bus Terminal - you'll arrive at the Davao Bus Terminal, close to SM City. From there you can take a cab ride to your hotel. There are many jeeps that will also take you to the Poblacion town center, 15 mins, PHP 12

    CDO >> Iligan by bus

    CDO has 2 bus stations - West Terminal Bulua and East Terminal Agora. For Iligan, you have to take a jeep going to Bulua West Terminal.

    1. CDO East Bus Terminal (Agora) - 24 hours, if you came from Davao, you'll be disembarking at the Agora East Terminal. Take a jeep going to West Bus Terminal (Bulua), 30 mins, PHP 20.
    2. CDO West Terminal (Bulua) - 24 hours, take a bus going to Iligan. Many buses going west (Pagadian, Zamboanga, Plaridel, etc.) will pass by Iligan - just ask the bus conductor. 2 hours (1.5 hours night trip), PHP 200 (SC P160). You will get off at the Tambo Integrated Bus Terminal in Iligan
    3. Tambo Integrated Bus Terminal - from the terminal, take a jeep to City Proper and it will pass by the Iligan Port, 30 mins, 15 PHP (if you intend to take a boat out of Iligan)

    CDO >> Lazi, Siquijor by boat

    Cagayan de Oro to Lazi, Siquijor route by Kho Shipping was just opened up in early September 2023. Before, going to Lazi from Davao meant going to Iligan after CDO, adding 3 hours on the trip. Now, Iligan can be completely bypassed.

    1. CDO Port - take Kho Shipping to Lazi, W-F-Sun, 6 hours, CDO departure 5 pm, arrival in Lazi Port 11 pm, economy Pxxxx, tourist Pxxxxxx.

    2. Cagayan de Oro to Lazi

    Currency Converter
    Currency Converter

    »» next Counter Culture story: PechaKucha Night at Gilt (Artisan Lounge), Cebu
    »» back to Counter Culture
    »» back to Homepage

    ARCHIVE: 2024 | JAN | FEB | MAR | APR | MAY

    1970 | 1973 | 1975 | 1976 | 1979 | 1981 | 1996 | 2000 | 2001 | 2002 | 2003 | 2004 | 2005 | 2006 | 2007 | 2008 | 2009 | 2010 | 2011 | 2012 | 2013 | 2014 | 2015 | 2016 | 2017 | 2018 | 2019 | 2020 | 2021 | 2022 | 2023 | 2024 | ALL BLOGS