Shy was at Baguio Village Inn

Shy was at Baguio Village Inn
Warm, Quaint and Homey Room for only P350! :)

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Thursday, January 8, 2015

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Going Around Baguio in Half a Day

Since I can only check in at 2pm, I have all morning to go around Baguio.  So from Baguio Village Inn, I took a Trancoville jeepney and dropped at the corner of Session Road.  There isn't any jeepneys going in there.  My guess is to ease traffic congestion since there were already a lot of cars going to and fro the touristy road.  My plan was to wait until 9am whe the Department of Tourism opens so I can get a free copy of a Baguio tourist map.  When I got there it was just only 7am so I managed to go down session road to hang around Burnham Park.   I was really cold, which makes me remind of the coldness in HK when I was exactly the same time last last year.

Burnham Park

There were a number of people doing exercise.  I was just going around taking pictures and really not planning to stay longer.  Here I saw strawberry taho which was being sold in many parts of the park.  I thought I'd try to get it some other time since I already had my breakfast in the inn.

Then just at the corner, I saw bicycles and tricycles in every color and sizes.  Not sure of my biking skills, I tried out a pink one and went off gradually picking up my pace.  For just 40 pesos an hour, it was a perfect exercise.

Baguio Museum

When 9am was drawing in, I paid for the rent and walked my way to the Department of Tourism.  All in all I think it was a 15min walk from Burnham Park.  There I got my map, and got another one for the Inn since the ran out of it.  Just beside the building is the Baguio Museum, since it was just nearby, I thought of visiting it.  I think I paid P40 for the entrance.  It is a 4 storey building.  Nothing really much can be seen in here.  Most of the artifacts are on the 2nd floor which is the receiving area, the level that you reach once you climbed up the stairs.  Outside there will be a notice that you're not allowed to take pics in 2nd and 4th floor.  Not knowing that I was on the 2nd, I took a few pics.  I wasn't really reprimanded, maybe they had a lot of tourists doing the same thing I did.

From there, I planned to go to Mines Park and the spots near it such as The Mansion, The Botanical Garden, Horse Farm, and Good Shepherd Convent.   I was told by the staff in the museum that I should head back to Session road because there's a street close to it where you can ride jeepney going to Mines Park.

Mines Park

Here people can enjoy having their pics taken with 2 big Saint Bernards, colorful horses, colorful flowers, them with traditional tribal costumes, and a scenery overlooking Baguio.

Good Sheperd Convent

Just 5 mins. away you can walk your way to The Good Shepherd Convent where tourists can buy souvenirs.  The convent sells different kinds of goods like cookies, jam and stuff all made by students whose education are financially supported by the convent.

Horse Farm

The next destination is a bit far so I had to take Baguio jeepney going to the Horse Farm.  You'll know that you are near the place when you can smell the funky smell of the horse' urine and waste.  The place isn't big.  You can just see horses lining and a bunch of men hollering at you to try horseback riding.  Since I've already experienced that, I didn't bother staying long and just went ahead climbing the stairs to reach The Mansion.

The Mansion

The climb up was really exhausting but I had to push myself to reach the Mansion.  There waiting were a number of souvenir sellers who are selling toys, big oranges, leather belts to name a few. It was said that the mansion is where the President reside when having a vacation in Baguio.

For lunch I went to Volante which was just across the street from the Horse Farm.  They serve Italian food, and I happened to get myself a 6 inch pizza.  So small for my liking but for P80 I think it was quite fair.

The Botanical Garden

It's just 2 minutes down the road. I didn't know this so I rode a jeepney.  Few seconds after, I went down to get into the Botanical Garden.  It is a work-in-progress park so it wan't as refined yet, but the concept that they have is quite impressive.  I didn't bother taking pictures since by this time I was already feeling tired, and I hadn't had much sleep while in the midnight bus from Cubao.  From here I went back to the Inn just in time for my room to be available for check in and got myself a well deserved rest.

All these places can be traveled for half a day.  If you wouldn't be staying so much time (meaning 1 hour per place) in a place, it is doable.  I just went around just enough for me to check the place and to take some pictures.  If you want to include Strawberry farm here, you can.  You just have to go there (preferably via taxi) right before going to places I've mentioned because it's always better going there first thing in the morning, that is if you plan to pick strawberries for yourself, but if not, then anytime is fine.

I understand that anyone with a sane mind would't like to travel for only half a day in Baguio.  I just indicated here that you can, to give people an idea that it's possible so you can spend some time chilling.  In my case, I did that because I never thought I could mark out all the go-to destinations in such a short time.  Like I had planned to go to certain places for a day, and I was just shocked that I had already marked all of it for just half a day of going around.

I stayed there for 3 days but went around for just 15% of the duration, mostly on the first day when I traveled half a day.  The following day, I went to Strawberry Farm.  I didn't bother going to the Buddhist temple.  It's just my preference since my main goal for going to Baguio really is to eat as many strawberries as I can.  Eat it with chocolate, and work on the long overdue ebook.  Eating was easy, but writing was hard.  I never anticipated that I couldn't work with a really cool weather.

The Main Star of the Show: Strawberries

This is what I've learned though.  You don't really have to see everything in Baguio.  You don't have to kick yourself for missing a landmark because at the end of the day what's more important is for you to enjoy the place, not race around in it just so you can "experience" it.  Chill, there's more to Baguio than these places.  There are a lot of great people that you can talk to and meet along the road.  Don't forget to start a conversation with them because mind you, these moments are far greater than just visiting some old landmark, the people for me is the landmark.

I think I've kinda grown as a traveler and I think I kinda want to keep it that way.


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