Posted by: jinoe | August 26, 2008

Back in Baguio

The original plan was to go to Polillo Island. We were invited to be there and were asked that the youth will conduct the Sabbath services. However, the weather wasn’t so kind and we were advice not to push through with the activity. It would be a long weekend and we wanted to have a place to go away from the city. I suggested we go to Baguio to which majority agreed. So there were eight of us who left Manila last Friday and went to the City of Pines.

The last time I was in Baguio was December 2005 during a Youth Convention with about a thousand of other young people attending. Never got the chance to go around but still I had good memories of the city and wanted to go back.

We have been listening to the news since it was on the same week that Typhoon Karen hit the nothern provinces of Luzon. I was expecting that the city would still be recovering from the typhoon. But Baguio was clean and quite when we arrived. It was as if nothing happened. The rain and wind was strong days before. We were fortunate that the place was back to its beauty when we arrived on Friday.

Fruits and Vegetables

Most of our trip was to the market. It was my first time to be there and it was one of the cleanest market I have been to. Despite not being we’ll designed and lacking of modern facilities, the market was clean and didn’t have the foul smell. Best of all, you have access to the best vegetable in the country. The cauliflower, lettuce, carrots, and broccoli were so fresh that we decided to cook chopsuey. On our last day, we bought fruits like plums, rambutan, persimmon and sagada oranges. Not my favorites but they taste nice.

Food trips

We never had an itinerary. Since most of us had been to Baguio before, we never planned to visit tourist attractions. Instead, we just go where time and space would take us. We only went to Camp John Hay, the Botanical Gardens, and Mine’s View. We dropped by Nevada Square but never stayed long. We were at Session Road three times for food.

We had an early breakfast at Andok’s. This was the nearest place we can eat that was open before 7am. While most Andok’s in Manila are just stalls on the streets, this one was had a dine-in area that can accomodate about a hundred peole. They offer the usual lechon manok but had other combo meals.

We wanted to eat at Don Henrico’s on Saturday night. The branch at Session Road was the first Don Hen. Unfortunately, the place was full so we had pizza and pasta at Yellow Cab. The eight of us were not able to finish two 18″ plates of pizza and 3 servings of pasta.

We stopped by The Tea House since one of our friends asked to bring him Jona’s Delight back in Manila. Jona’s Delight was a cake packed in a disposable plastic. Not the usual arrangement for cake but it looks delicious already. We bought the chocolate and ube flavors. Both were delicious. It wasn’t too sweet and the chiffon was soft. We should have bought more to bring back to Manila.

Cordillera Cafe

We had a coffee break at Cordillera Cafe at SM Baguio. It was supposed to be at Starbucks but the place was full and a bit hot. Cordillera Cafe was not crowded and had more comfortable seats. The drinks weren’t bad either.

Our other meals were courtesy of a church potluck for Saturday lunch and a lunch invitation on Sunday by the mother of Vinz’s brother’s girlfriend. Not to be missed on the table are the vegetable salad and fruits. Baguio is really lucky to have them.

I wanted to get back to Forest House and have a meal there. My friend introduced me to that place when I first visited Baguio. Great ambiance, nice food. Unfortunately, not all of us agreed to eat there so maybe next time.

Where are the Baguio Attractions?

After two years, there wasn’t much changes in Baguio. It’s the same places to go to that we have run out of ideas. Most of us also noticed that Baguio wasn’t as good as it used to. The Session Road is crowded with cars and people. Botanical Gardens isn’t much of a garden and some parts were not well maintained. Same as Camp John Hay. Mine’s View can’t be called Mine’s View anymore. Where’s the mining pit down there?

There’s still a reason to be back

While Baguio seems to have seen its glory days, it’s still a perfect destination to escape the heat of city life. In Baguio, you can easily cool off from stress, enjoy great food, and have a carefree laid back life. I find it better than Tagaytay since there are more places to visit and more options that fits my budget. I won’t hesitate going back there to unwind.

Baguio Barkadahan

Here are some lists of barkada trips we had during our stay in Baguio

  1. Long boy talks. We slept at 3am just talking. From my friend’s experiences in Bangkok, another guy’s Korean love spells and my science lectures.
  2. Prenups Previews. Two of our friends brought their DSLRs and asked Que and I to pose for them ala prenups pics. It was a disaster. What was planned to be some sweet romance at the phone booth turned out to be a rape scene. So I won’t be posting all the pics here.
  3. Photo Sessions at Camp John Hay, Mine’s View and Botanical Garden.
  4. Camp John Hay

    Camp John Hay

    Botanical Garden

    Botanical Garden

    Mine's View

    Mine's View

  5. A Science experiment. We were shocked how the corn snacks looks bloated in the grocery store. All the chips that were sealed looked liked they were going to explode. So I bought a pack of Knick Knacks and kept them until we get back to Manila. This is to observe if the same pack of Knick Knacks wil remain bloated when we get back to the city. Upon arrival, they were back to normal. At first I thought it was the temperature in Baguio. But it doesnt make sense since grocery stores are just as cold in Manila. The conclusion: It was due to the pressure. Baguio was lower in atmospheric pressure than Manila because of the elevation. The pressure inside the pack was now bigger than the pressure in the surroundings and is now forcing the package to expand further.
  6. No runs for me in Baguio. I tried to run at Camp John Hay with an attempt to break Usain Bolt’s Olympic record. Unfortunately, I was called by the security and was given a warning for overspeeding. Tsk tsk…

Thanks to Vinz and Jery for sharing their pics.
For more of our pics at Baguio, visit Vinz’s site here and Jery’s site here.

I enjoyed the trip with my church buddies. Sa uulitin.



  1. I’d like to try Forest House one time.

    You should. Tara. Kailan pre?

  2. It’s always nice to go somewhere with the gang — I miss those days when you can just say let’s go and go. Don’t get me wrong, traveling with the family is also great but iba talaga pag barkada ang kasama. Really great story and pictures — and, yep, sayang, Forest House is a great place to dine in — especially the desserts!!! Next time, must go place. Actually, the photo in the phone booth is cute — better than a staged love scene!! 🙂

    Well, Vinz just posted the more candid shots. Thank goodness. 😀

  3. daw grabe gid to pangusog mo sa phone booth haw? hehe…

    Effort guid gali ang magpa-prenup, Er.

  4. Jinoe…
    thanks for stopping by the other day. I like your pictures. taken very professionally. Baguio is history for me. It was there where I begin my long distance running career. I would love to go back there one of these days. Have a nice weekend ahead!.

    Hi Ibanrunner, most of the pictures are not mine. They are from Vinz and Jery who are really talented in photography. Naks, built up to both of you.

    I would like to run in Baguio too. But I have noticed that I breathe harder there whenever I make sprints to be in the camera and be part of the pictures.

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