Malaybalay City is the capital Bukidnon, a landlocked province in the highlands of Northern Mindanao. Owing to its high elevation, it has been known for its cold weather and is dubbed as the South Summer Capital of the Philippines. Despite not having white sand beaches and high end resorts, Malaybalay offers its rich cultural heritage and tourist attractions tailored-fit for outdoor adventure enthusiasts.
These are the seven (7) tourist attractions you may want to check out once you visit Malaybalay City.
1. Kaamulan Festival
Kaamulan comes from the Binukid word "amul" which means "to gather". The festival gathers and celebrates the culture and traditions of the Seven Hill Tribes who are recognized as the original inhabitans of the province. These are the Matigsalog, Umayamnon, Bukidnon, Manobo, Tigwahonon, Higaoonon and Talaandig . The festival is held annualy during the months of February and March. Its main highlight is the Ethnic Street Dancing Competition. Participated by real "lumads", Kaamulan Festival is dubbed as the Only Authentic Ethnic Festival in the country.
Visit this LINK for the Schedule of Activities of the upcoming 2017 Kaamulan Festival celebration.
2. Monastery of the Transfiguration
Perched on the hills of Barangay San Jose, the Monastery of the Transfiguration is a popular wedding destination. Its pyramid church was designed by the late National Artist Leandro Locsin. With its quaint and peaceful setting, the Monastery also offers accommodation for those who want to take a spiritual retreat or simply de-stress from life's daily grind. The Monks also maintain their own farm and offer their most popular product: Monk's Blend Coffee.
Visit this LINK for related posts on the Monastery of Transfiguration.
How to Get There: From Malaybalay City proper, ride a multicab to Barangay San Jose then look for habal-habal motorcycle to take you to the Monastery.
3. Bukidnon Provincial Tree Park
The Bukidnon Provincial Tree Park is a popular hiking destination owing to its proximity from the city proper. The pine-clad trail is less than 2 kilometers to its peak (840++ meters ASL) more popularly known as the Two Trees. Despite being an easy hike, you will be rewarded with the refreshing view of rice lands, rolling hills and the majestic Kitanglad Range Natural Park from afar.
(Visit this LINK for related posts on the Bukidnon Provincial Tree Park)
How to Get There: Take the road in-between DPWH and GK Capitol Village then after crossing the spillway over Kalawaig Creek and passing by some residential dwellings, follow the established narrow trail all the way to the peak.
4. The Waterfalls of Kibalabag
Kibalabag is a highland barangay about 20 kilometers from Malaybalay City Proper. Unknown to many, the barangay boast of three waterfalls that can be visited within one day. These are the Katihan Falls, Dumagongdong Falls and Kibalabag Falls. To get there, you may take a motorcycle ride (habal-habal) from their terminal near Arbees Bakeshop along Magsaysay Street. One-way fare is 200 pesos and travel time is about 40 minutes. Upon arriving in Kibalabag, register at the barangay hall then ask for a guide to the three waterfalls. The river trek is moderately difficult and is recommended only to those who are used to hiking activites.
(Visit this LINK for related posts on Kibalabag Falls)
5. The Big Rock
The Big Rock is large boulder which sits along the road going from Malaybalay City to Barangay Kibalabag. It is about 9 kilometers from the city proper. It is a favorite route of runners and bikers because of the challenging uphill climb stretching for about 2 kilometers. At 1,000 meters ASL, it offers breathtaking views of mountain ranges and verdant hills. To get there, you may charter a motorcycle (habal-habal) from their terminal near Arbees Bakeshop along Magsaysay Street.
(Visit this LINK for Adventure Trails Near Malaybalay City)
6. Mt. Capistrano
Mt. Capistrano is another popular day hike in Malaybalay. A moderately difficult climb, its rocky peak offers amazing view of the vast rice lands down below. It has two established trail: one in Sitio Binalbagan, Barangay Simaya and the other is near Jurolan Pool in Barangay Managok. The most popular trail is in Binalbagan because of its shorter (but steeper) distance to the peak. To get there, ride a multicab from Malaybalay City to Barangay Aglayan. From Aglayan, ride a habal-habal motorcycle to Binalbagan. Once in Binalbagan, ask around for any Purok officials who can provide you a local guide to the peak.
(Visit this LINK to read my Mount Capistrano Experience)
7. Nasuli Spring
Ice-cold water sprouting from underground made up the deep pool of Nasuli Spring. A popular picnic spot, it has recently been improved with the addition of cottages and tables for rent and comfort rooms. Life vests are also available for rent. Located in Barangay Bangcud (about 17 kilometers from city proper), you may ride an ordinary bus or multicab from Malaybalay City. Tell the conductor or driver that you will disembark at the entrance of Nasuli. From the highway, there are habal-habal motorcycles which can take you the resort as it is still about one kilometer away.
(Visit this LINK to read my recent Nasuli Spring Resort experience)
How to Get There:
2. Visit this POST for cheap accommodations in Malaybalay City.'