DUAW KAGAY-AN PARK in Cagayan de Oro City, Northern Mindanao, Philippines is a small, very old park that has long been used by the townspeople for strolling and relaxing. It is located on the banks of the Cagayan River, nestled with old trees between the Cathedral and the old City Hall building, next to the Ysalina Bridge and separated from Gaston Park only by the tennis courts.

Decades ago, where the Madonna statue now stands, there were some enclosures with monkeys for the amusement of the townsfolk. Today, Duaw Kagayan Park is officially closed. As the gate was open and some gardeners were working here, I went inside. Since the park was rebuilt, it has never been opened. Probably because it hasn’t been completely finished yet, or maybe because something very strange happened?

Yes, what happened there? They built the flood protection wall under the Ysalina Bridge and on top of this wall there is a possibility to walk from Duaw Kagayan Park along the river to the city administration. Only unfortunately, the passage height under the bridge is designed for dwarfs and for years this has not been rectified. If you now duck your head, you can already pass under the bridge and come out behind the city administration at the rear exit of Police Station 1. Here, on the protective wall, there is a pretty little eatery decorated with lots of flowers, and you can also always find policewomen and policemen for a little chat.

Before the flood wall was built, some families of non-settled inhabitants lived here under the bridge. These have been evicted and were really not a pretty sight.

It is a pity that the park is not open to the public, because it offers itself with perhaps more seating as Lover Lane and also the normal park goer could very well watch and enjoy the dancing lights of the Ysalina Bridge here on a balmy evening.


VIDEO (2:30) by Philippines Magazine




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