Right smack on my list of favorite travel destinations is the wonderful city of Baguio.
Baguio City also known to be the summer capital of the Philippines lives up to it’s nickname even today. It is one of the favorite nature ridden destination in the country today. This quaint city does not only offer best sights to see, refreshing cold weather, but also gastronomic delights that will surely titillate your taste buds!
When we visit Baguio, we usually stay in a hotel with a good location, a place where you are able to walk when going to favorite downtown destinations such as the Burnham Park or the famous Session Road. There are many inns and pension houses for backpackers if you are in a budget. While most of them have non-air conditioned rooms at affordable rates, the weather makes it work for you because it is really cool during night time. We usually take the Bus from Manila to Baguio to reach our awaited destination. The road going there is good so you will not have a problem when you travel there. I would describe it as a more of a roller coaster ride because of the crisscross roads, in fact it makes me queasy at times but generally, you’ll survive it. I like night travel rather than day because its much cooler and the ride much quieter too. It will take about 5-6 hours by Bus depending on the traffic.
The first things that I love about Baguio is the lovely weather. The cool breeze makes the walk in the park perfect for families, lovers or even solo backpackers. Baguio offers so many sights from parks to the famous Presidential Mansion. I just love walking during mornings where you know there is sun but you can’t help but walk the roads because of the cool wind you catch. The many pine trees of the city are what makes the place cool plus the fact that it sits atop a mountain. Furthermore, the people of Baguio are also very friendly and accommodating to tourists. The local language is Ilocano but the general public also speak the local “Tagalog”.
Another thing I love about Baguio is the Gastronomical adventures I get to have especially when I visit Mine’s View park. My most favorite food is the dried squid. It’s salty and tastes lovely with spicy vinegar! Baguio is also very known for their fresh veggies and Strawberries. I have never seen such a vast expanse of strawberry plants than what I have seen in La Trinidad of Baguio city. In the strawberry fields, you can purchase already freshly picked ones or you can also pick them out by your self in the field with the help of the accommodating “manang” there. The best part of them all? You get to eat them all by yourself! Aside from the actual fruit, you can also enjoy the strawberry jam, wines, candy and all other delicacies that you can make out of strawberries. Moreover, the best strawberry jam great for “pasalubong” are the ones that can be bought in Good Shepherd Sisters. I love how they make them more chunkier and more strawberry filled too. (drool!) So, moving on, Another really great food trip in Baguio is the local Taho! they mix it with strawberry jam and I tell you, you really have to try it. You will realize that it’s not only M&M’s that melt in your mouth. =)
Of course aside from the gastronomical adventures that you must try in Baguio, shopping is always a girls best friend. Baguio is very known to store varying knitted items from clothing to booties or scarves. I always love buying these type of goods here because aside from being cheap, they are also well made because the people of Baguio are known for making them personally. They usually sell it by wholesale there like 3 for 100 pesos type of deals. Another great thing to shop is the many wooden carvings. They have flutes and traditional sandok and sungka. Their wooden key chains that you can have engraved with your names are also a hit for tourists.
Last thing I highly recommend when going to Baguio? Taking a stroll at night at Session Road or a day of picnic in Burnham park. Session road is one of the famous roads of the city. This is the road where parties go and a lot of shops and restaurants are. It is known to be one of the night life of the city, although not much of nightlife there. You can find urban restaurants such as Army Navy, Andoks, and Sizzling Chef there. On the other hand, Burnham park is one of my favorite places in Baguio. It’s one of the heart of Baguio. There you can ride a swan boat in their man made lake or take a stroll with a rented bike. You can also enjoy the sunshine while eating bread with ice cream (something I always do!) or you can just stroll the whole park and enjoy the sight of people laughing and having a good R&R time with the family.
I just can’t wait for another Baguio adventure soon. I always have a good time there. Wishing to visit during Penagbenga Festival there. I would love to see the flowers!