“ THE HISTORICAL, CULTURAL AND PILGRIMAGE DESTINATION”
There are several reasons why Ozamiz is called the Historical, Cultural and Pilgrimage Destination in Mindanao.
Formerly, Ozamiz City is the municipality of Misamis. It became a chartered city on July 16, 1948. Ozamiz City is named after the late Senator Jose “ Pepeng” Fortich Ozamiz in honor of his Martyrdom and Heroism. The late Senator Ozamiz is the first Senator coming from Misamis Occidental.
Ozamiz City has emerged as one of the interesting tourist destination in this part of Mindanao after the historians have written and embraced all of the account of events and the stories on the bravery and heroism of the men and women fighting for their lives and beliefs during the alien invasion from the Spanish regime in the early part of 15th century until the Japanese occupation in our nation for over Two centuries.
During the 17th century Spaniards conquered this place not by force but by faith. The Spaniards built the Fort, locally known as Cotta in 1756. Father Jose Docus was the architect of the Fort. They introduced Christianity to the early settlers which was the Subanon. In the early Eighteen century the Spaniards brought to Ozamiz the original image of the Miraculous Our Lady of Triumph of the Cross which was kept in the first Catholic Church here and later on as Her miracles spread out , the Virgin has become the favorite devotion of the people. The Miraculous image was engraved and enshrine on the wall of the Cotta. Since then, Cotta has been closely associated with the Shrine as what Misamis folks considered the Miraculous Image of the “ Berhin sa Cotta” which has become adopted as the second patroness of the city. The Our Lady of Immaculate Concepcion is the patroness of Ozamiz whose feast day is celebrated every December 8, while “Berhin sa Cotta” has Her feast day on July 16 which coincides with the date when Ozamiz has become a chartered City.
Today, after 255-year ,Cotta remained the precious jewel of Ozamiznon and even to the Misamisnon and the faithful continued to pay homemade visit to the Shrine while devotees and pilgrims from the different part of the country continue in praying and thanksgiving for their petitions.
On March 13, 2002 the National Historical Institute (NHI) has declared the Fort or Cotta as one of the National Landmark of the Philippines naming it as “ Fuerte dela Concepcion y del Triunfo per en banc resolution dated March 13, 2002.
Interesting places in the city includes the 90-meter high-above sea level Bukagan Hill which kept on its belfry the 4-giant bells of St. Michael casted in Germany in 1648. The Immaculate Concepcion Cathedral which was designed by the national artist Leandro Locsin in 1962 and the Pipe Organ found at the choir-loaf of the Cathedral and the old Spanish ancestral home of the Rodriguez-Bernad family. Dr. Jose Rizal before he was exiled in Dapitan has stayed overnight at the Rodriguez ancestral home in barangay Aguada.
Ozamiz has the best seafoods to offer from the abundance of Panguil Bay. We have special menu on the famous “Laya fish. Try the green mango wrap with laya kinilaw meat, the fantastic Crabs and seashells cooked in different style just choose according to your preference in a very affordable cost.
We showcase our precious Subanon culture in a uniquely interesting and famous “Subayan Keg Subanon Festival every July 15. This is the way to continuously preserving the cultural values of the original people inhabiting in this place.
Today, Ozamiz stands proud and is very promising City, we have direct flights from Manila and Cebu. Vessels are regularly docking in our clean and modern seaport serving both passengers and cargo for Cebu,Dumaguete,Ilo-ilo,Iligan and Manila.