It is home to leading universities, including the Capital University, Xavier University and Liceo de Cagayan University, recognised for their work in medicine and agriculture. They give the city a vibrant edge and a large student population. Bookshops can be found on almost every corner.
The city is surrounded by vast plantations, including those of the Bukidnon province, famous for its pineapples. Not to be confused with the Cagayan province in Northern Luzon or Cagayan islands, the city of Cagayan de Oro can trace its history back to the 1st century AD.
Little remains of the original city due to a fire that destroyed most of its buildings in 1901. As a result the Plaza Divisoria, a huge area of parks that divide the city, was designed and developed as a fire break. Today, it is where residents can be seen jogging, reading in the sunshine or quietly contemplating. Within the Plaza Divisoria is Bonifacio Park where local soldiers who fought for the country are honoured.