If you’ve been here before, I’m pretty sure you already have a list of things to do in Baguio. You’ve explored the usual tourist spots like Mines View, Camp John Hay, Burnham Park and The Mansion. You probably had your photo taken by the huge lion’s head along Kennon road & brought home strawberries & peanut brittle to your loved ones.
Baguio City is the summer capital of the Philippines. It’s a city located on top of the mountains in the northern region of the country. To get there, you’ll have to drive or take a bus from Metro Manila. The trip now takes 4 hours (Woohoo!) compared to the usual 5 thanks to a new segment of the TPLEX (Tarlac, Pampanga, La Union Expressway) just located right after the SCTex (Subic, Clark, Tarlac Expresway).
We didn’t know we were spending the weekend in Baguio. We just found out 18 hours before we left.
Wherever we go, we’re usually prepared in the sense that we at least have an itinerary & hotel to stay but this time, we didn’t. As soon as we arrived, we went to our top three choices inside Camp John Hay. But, since they were all booked, we had to go outside the vicinity to explore new places. Luckily, we found a botique hotel & booked it online as we were having late lunch at rustic Café by the Ruins.
Done with the day’s errands, we decided to have native chocolate at this place called Choco-laté de Batirol. I’m a chocoalte fan (as you may have read in the previous entriessss) and Ponggo love, love, loves native cacao. There’s nothing like drinking a warm cup of chocolate outdoors where it’s cold. (Yes, 14 degrees Celsius is considered cold in this side of the world).
We usually stay up late & wake up late on weekends but for a change, we thought, why not wake up early & shoot the sunrise?
The next day, we went to Mines View. This place us usually packed with tons of local tourists to the point that if we can, we would avoid this place. We woke up at 5-ish in the morning & went to the sunrise spot (i.e. the viewing deck).
Apparently, this is how the mountain ranges look for a very short time in the morning: different hues of blue–just like in a painting! (Wow, Did I just rhyme?)
There were only less than 15 people in the area when we arrived! We searched for the East and clicked the morning away as the sun rose while the roosters greeted the early risers allover the city.
Above is Ponggo’s version of the sunrise. This is just a proof that even if two people are side by side, they will still produce different photos. Even the way I cropped his photo is very different from the way he posted it on his own Instagram account. 😉
Taking advantage of what seemed like a ghost town, I went around the flower market area in Mines view & took photos of flowers to my heart’s content!
More flowers. I wish I could take these all home but I doubt they’ll survive the hotter weather in Manila. 🙁
We went back to our hotel and had a yummy breakfast of longganisa & bangus (native sausage & milk fish) both best eaten with suka (the local vinaigrette). [Don’t you just love the sound of our local food in English? ;)] When we’re out-of-town, as much as we can, we always try the local food and skip the fast food & convenience stores that we’re so accustomed to!
Nope, those are not ants! That’s Ponggo & myself hanging around–literally–while on top of Pine Trees. (Gahhh…My description just sounded Twilight-ish and I think I just destroyed the idea of ziplining for ya!)
Also a last minute idea, I dared Ponggo to try the zipline Superman style at the Tree Top Adventure in Camp John Hay. I have done this before so I was pretty confident I can do it again only to find out that I was the one who was trembling the whole time. *Woops! A dose of my own medicine.*
This is me trying to be a diligent blogger, managing to squeeze in a blog post or two during the weekend.
All in all, it was a really fun and relaxing weekend. I just realized that if you do the same things, you’ll get the same boring results all the time. Also, if you plan too much, you might end up concentrating on how much you’ve failed versus your plan. But, if you don’t have a strict itinerary, you’ll never know where your feet & mind will take you!
The Long & Winding Road a.k.a. Kennon Road
That’s it for our Baguio weekend and ever since we got back, I don’t know how many people I tried convincing to visit Baguio. The place is not packed during this time of the year & the weather is lovely!
‘Til our next adventure,
More travels here:
The Googly Gooeys Goes to Boracay
Swept Away in Boracay
Our Dream Travel Destinations
Newfound Appreciation + Homeless.hk
Monsters University Hong Kong