Baguio City- The Summer Capital of the Philippines. The coldest place in the Philippines.
Baguio City is not on my list of local destinations. But, why did I go?
I packed light, as usual. There is always something good about packing light; I can walk and run easily while enjoying the trip. And I’m a traveler, travelers do light packing.
Three friends were with me. We reached Victory Liner Pasay terminal at 11:00 in the evening. The travel from Pasay to Baguio takes six hours. If we will depart at 11:00 in the evening, we will be in Baguio at 5:00 in the morning. Sweet!
Until we forgot, HEY, IT IS HOLY WEEK!
People going to different provinces were all over the terminal. There was a long queue for each destinations. Upon setting my foot on the terminal ground and studied the situation, I immediately went to the ticketing counter to purchase our ticket. Sadly I wasn’t able to secure our tickets because every buses were fullybooked and the next trip is on the following day at 1:00 in the afternoon, oh my!
We do not have any choice but to wait while lining up in the long queue. Luckily, coaches were leaving every after 30 minutes, sweet! Lesson learned, always book tickets online.
We got to step on-board at 2:00 in the midnight, at last. We expected to reach Baguio City at 8:00 in the morning. There were two stopovers before our final destination. First was at Sison’s Tarlac and second was at Sison’s La Union. From Sison’s La Union it took as one and a half hour ride before reaching the City of Pines.
I am not in mood to act like a tourist so I only have few photos with me.
Tadah! We were welcomed by strawberry taho vendors. My friends tried the strawberry flavor but I stayed with the plain one.
After 30 minutes of waiting, finally, Tita Sheila arrived. She brought us up to SM Baguio so we can have our brunch. In all fairness, SM Baguio is so cold even without air conditioner. It is an open space mall, with enough space to roam around. The boutiques are typical ones. There’s enough restaurant for tourists. People come and go in boots, leggings, dresses, sneakers, etc. You could merely see locals, mostly are tourists.
After our brunch, Tita Sheila walked us up to Session Road. Looks familiar, yes, it is the road where Panagbenga Festival is being held. I thought the road is broad in space, I was wrong.
After two hours, we reached her rest house where we stayed. We were all tired but happy.
In 30 minutes we changed and freshened up. We don’t want to waste time since we have to be back in Cavite by Monday, that leaves us only couple of days. After 30 minutes we went out, had our snacks then hired a taxi to Mines View Park. It cost us 70 pesos from Session Road to Mines View Park. It is so cheap considering the distance to where we were fetch. I never enjoyed that kind of joy ride before! The trees, the place, the temperature, all is perfect and relaxing. I can roam around Baguio City without leaving the taxi, I swear!
MINES VIEW PARK
Mines View Park is a narrow place (really narrow) with plenty of people. We had a good view of Baguio but we did not stay long because there’s no place where we could stay. Climbing back, we had a photo opt with a pink horse as a souvenir. It cost us 10 pesos per picture.
I smelled the aroma of roasted squid going up. I couldn’t resist the smell so we ate. It cost us 20 pesos per stick of squid and 35 pesos per piece of corn cob.
THE LONG LINE IN GOOD SHEPHERD CONVENT
We walked down Mines View Park and found the Good Shepherd Convent. Intrigued, we entered in and peeked why there is a long queue. Aha! There’s the famous Good Shepherd Ube Jam! I really wanted to purchase few bottles but we do not have enough time to queue in.
After that, we hired a taxi down to The Mansion but it was already closed when we arrived. Good thing, Wright Park is just across the The Mansion so we crossed the street. We took time taking selfies and couple shots down the road. The park is quite pretty but is not well maintained. There are flowers in the middle and pine trees in the side. At the end of the park there is a picnic area.
We thought Botanical Garden is just near Wright Park; we walked down the road only to find out it is not. We walked for two kilometers, oh my, our feet soared. Good thing the weather is pleasant so nobody complained. Upon reaching the garden, we decided to go no further because it is already dark and mosquitoes are all over. So, we rode back to our place.
NIGHT IN BAGUIO CITY
At about 8:30 in the evening, ukay-ukay (thrift store) vendors lay their goods on the hi-way road of Burnham Park. I couldn’t believe how plenty of ukay-ukays they are selling and the fact that the government is closing a part of the main road for ukay-ukays. Apart from ukay-ukays, there are also unused clothes and shoes being sold. When you reach the end of the tianggian, you will find street foods in every kind.
THE FOLLOWING DAY AT STRAWBERRY FARM
It was 8:00 in the morning when we started our trip to Strawberry Farm. We preferred not to have breakfast to save time. It took us almost 30 minutes going to the farm. I expected different from what I saw. I thought the farm is just a regular size field, but, it is very wide. Since we like to experience picking strawberries, we paid 350 pesos per kilo. It is really expensive because you can buy outside a kilo of strawberry for 50 pesos. But, having an experience is priceless!
CAULIFLOWERS AND BROCOLLIS ARE ACTUALLY FLOWERS
It is not only strawberries that we saw. There are also cauliflower, brocolli, lettuce,onions, everlasting, sunflowers and bell papers planted in the field. I was really amazed, with all exaggeration, how round lettuce molds itself into round, how huge is the spring of scallion and that cauliflowers and brocolli are actually flowers.
Outside the farm is where we bought goodies to bring home. Danica, our friend, bought two kilos of lansones to a vendor who’s using a handheld weighing scale. Fortunately, she told us that she bought two kilos. We have suspicion that it is not two kilos so I had Em looked for a weighing scale. There, we found out that the lansones is only 1 1/2 kilos. Em immediately confronted the vendor and said that her weighing scale is not right. Without any complain the vendor added more lansones to the plastic bag.
After the Strawberry farm we head back to our place and left our strawberries and other pasalubongs. We went out again for some official business. After which, we packed and left home.
We had a very short trip but we really enjoyed it as much as we thought we would not. I have a feeling I will go back again. I begun to love the place because it’s peaceful and cold.
Till next Baguio City!