NEWSFLASH – It was my first time in the City of Pines. Yes, your read that right!! I’ve been going here and there but it was just 2 weeks ago that I got to visit Baguio City with my sister and her boyfriend.
Well it wasn’t really in my plan to go with them since my friends and I (shoutout to my Mumshies ❤️❤️❤️) promised to go to Baguio together for our 2017 adulting trip hahaha Anyway I didn’t have any plans for that weekend so off to being third wheel LOL
We decided to take a midnight bus via Victory Liner in Cubao. We got deluxe ticket which costs 450php per way while the first class w/ cr costs 700php per way(will try this next time when we have enough budget!) Online reservation is also available so you may want to check the schedule here: https://www.victoryliner.com/TerminalGuide.aspx
The bus left Manila at 11:55pm and we dozed off our way to Baguio.
We arrived in Victory Linr terminal in Baguio at around 5:30am. First thing we did when we got off the bus was to purchase our return tickets since we didn’t want to take the risk of being chance passengers or worse be left behind in Baguio on a Sunday night.
Taxis were readily available outside the bus terminal so you can go straight to your hotel. There were also some kuyas offering transient homes and tours (even van transfers back to Manila) so I guess you can really go to Baguio without any plans at all then just book on the spot.
Our hotel check-in time was at 2pm so we decided to start going around the city. First off our list – STRAWBERRY TAHO. I super duper love strawberries and Baguio truly was a strawberry haven!! There were lots of kuyas selling strawberry-flavored taho and ates selling fresh strawberries outside the terminal. The taho had bits of strawberries mixed with it and it was super good!!! 😋😋😋
We wanted to have a proper breakfast so we opened our google maps and checked Hill Station, Casa Vallejo. It was a few-minute walk from the terminal but the restaurant was still closed so we decided to go to Baguio Cathedral instead.
By around 7am, we went back to Hill Station. The entrance/cafe part of the restaurant was a bit dark but it gave off a cozy ambience while the dining area proper was all wide and bright due to the big windows. It was such a nice place go have a hearty breakfast. We ordered the Pinoy Family Platter which cost PHP 550 for the 3 of us. The platter came with baguio longganisa, fried bangus belly, eggs, rice, side veggies and drinks that were good for 4 people. I liked the longganisa and side veggies the most 😋 We also freshened up and took photos before leaving Hill Station. I wanted to go inside Mt. Cloud bookshop but it would open at 10am. Maybe next time, I’ll go check on it.
We decided to go to Mines View Park so we rode a jeep in front of Hill Station. We didn’t know the route but I saw Mines View Park on its signage so we just hopped in. The driver said that he’ll drop us off at the jeep terminal and then we should ride another jeep going to Mines View Park. We paid 8.50 PHP each for the short ride. When we got on the next (and correct) jeep, we paid 10 PHP each since it was a full/longer ride.
It was bustling when we arrived at Mines View Park since it was a weekend plus there was no entrance fee so anyone can just come and go. I must say it was a typical tourist spot with vendors here and there, different activities to try and lots of people taking their selfies/groupies. What I loved about the place was the line of blossoms and of course the viewing deck.
On the other hand, I also felt sad for the animals and almost everything being commodified inside the park (a paper from one of my undergrad Tourism class just popped on my mind)
We left the park and walked to the Good Sheperd. After the long lines, we finally got our hands on the ever-famous ube jam and of course my favorite strawberry jelly ❤️ My sister and her boyfriend also bought ice cream from their ice cream shop.
Our next stop was Kamiseta Hotel (we also passed by Wright Park where we saw lots of horses) which is a very quaint and fancy hotel in Baguio. The entrance was full of floral-painted walls and a royal chair where I took my ‘feeling like a princess’ shot.
At the basement, they have the Kamiseta clothes shop and Vanilla Cupcake Bakery. We were supposed to just look around, take photos and have lunch at Ketchup Food Community back at Wright Park but we were tired of walking already so we decided to stay and order. While waiting, I took some photos of the restaurant interiors and decors.
Everything was so pretty, it made me all giddy like a little girl wanting to try on her new dress 😍 Our food came and among them, I liked the pesto pasta the most! (We spent around 200 PHP per dish by the way)
After some rest, we started walking again to Botanical Garden. My sister wanted to go to The Mansion but we didn’t push thru since it will be another hike uphill. Baguio has so much hikes it was energy-draining for us!!! LOL
After a few shots at the garden, we took a taxi (flat rate is PHP 35) to our hotel Inn Rocio. For one night, we paid around PHP 800 per person which already includes breakfast. Our room was a simple triple room, with own restroom. There was no aircon since Baguio is already cold.
We settled down, unpacked our things and slept for a few hours beforing heading out again. We walked to Burnham Park but when we arrived it suddenly rained hard that we were forced fo buy umbrellas (100 PHP each). The designs we picked were cute so it was ok anyway.
We left the park and went to Good Taste to have dinner. It was full-house but we were able to sit immediately since we were just 3 people. We ordered molo soup, buttered chicken and beef brocolli. We were surprised when our orders came since it looked like it can feed at least five 😳
After dinner we walked to Harrison road to find a pharmacy since my sister was feeling unwell. We wanted to wait for the ukay-ukay but we decided to head back to the hotel so my sister can also rest.
The next day, we checked out after breakfast and left our things at the front desk. We took a taxi since Ben Cab Museum is quite far from the city center.
We paid for our tickets (PHP 120 each) and started touring the galleries. I guess we were super lucky that day since we got to meet and take a photo with Mr. Ben Cab himself!!! I never thought I would personally meet a National Artist in this lifetime 😭😊
Aside from the galleries, the museum has a garden, eco trail (separate admission) and cafe. We had our lunch at Cafe Sabel and I must say their food is superb. I loved my order Ben Cab’s signature pasta. And special mention to the volcano ice cream (vanilla-flavored with slices of strawberries) It was pure hapiness for me!!! 😍
Back at city proper we went straight to public market to buy more pasalubongs. I bought half kilo of strawberries for 90 PHP while my sister and her boyfriend bought more plus lengua de gata, blueberries, grapes, etc.
After shopping, we went back to the hotel to get our bags and then to Victory Liner terminal to wait for our trip back to Manila. We wanted to have dinner at Cafe by the Ruins Dua (Cafe by the Ruins was burned down a week before our trip 😢) but we didn’t have enough time so we just bought take-outs. Our bus left Baguio at 6PM and we arrived in Cubao at around 11:30PM
It was a short but sweet escape from the city’s stressful routine! And I’ll make sure to go back ☺️