Baguio City Quickie

What’s crazier than driving up and down Baguio City from Metro Manila for a day tour?  It’s doing it all over again!  We did it once, and last weekend was able to do it again.

Let’s just say I’m not 100% crazy with this idea, but since we have a foreigner guest we want to tour around we decided to bring him to the summer capital.  It’s quite tiring, but since I missed Baguio, I grabbed the opportunity to return to the city of pines and revisit the places I missed.

Lion’s Head

Coming up from Kennon Road, this landmark is quite hard to miss.  I didn’t take any pictures here, but I noticed that it had some minor makeover.  If you ask me it could still use some major makeover though, aside from the paint job.

From my previous visit

O’ Mai Khan

When we arrived at the city’s center, an O’ Mai Khan greeted us—far off from the O’ Mai Khan I knew.  I thought they had expanded and it was their new branch, so I insisted on their original branch that I had font memories of.  To my horror, there was no O’ Mai Khan to be seen in its original spot near Rizal Park—they had moved!  From that spot it was quite difficult to drive back to the new branch and be able to arrive in time for lunch (until 2PM only) so it was plan B.

Moved to Upper Session Road, Engineer’s Hill, Baguio City

50’s Diner

When we arrived past 2PM at the Diner there was still a queue of customers waiting to be seated.  Fortunately we were not a big group so we didn’t wait that long, for the seat at least.  I noticed there were some new entries on their menu, and although the serving size remained huge and price quite cheap, the serving time was a bit long, and the food weren’t served hot.  I can’t say I went gaga for the food, but their drinks were quite awesome.  I had what they call “SHE,” which I recommend for meat lovers, and “Big 4” which is four seasons blended with coffee—highly recommended.

Popular as ever!

New on the menu: “SHE”

Click to view larger map

Mines View Park / Good Shepherd

After a huge meal, we went straight to Mines View to buy our favorite Good Shepherd products.  To those who haven’t been to Baguio City, Good Shepherd products made by the Mountain Maid Training Center are a must try because of their very high, premium quality, and it help supports the convent.  Among my favorites are their strawberry jam, ube jam, and “snowballs.”

Shopping at Good Shepherd

Still at the Good Shepherd compound

Some history of the place

Just a short walk away is the Mines View, which as the name suggests, overlooks some mine field.  I’m not sure if the mine still exists, but the view sure is nice.  It’s a great place to buy some souvenirs and eat some interesting street foods, including strawberry taho.

Mines View: crowded as usual

One of the flowers that can be seen in the area

A wishing well

Click to view larger map

Wright Park / The Mansion House

Is there any place more touristy to visit in Baguio but the official summer residence of the President of the Philippines, the Mansion House?  But first we dropped by the adjacent Wright Park.

At the center of the park

With benches for relaxing

...and for viewing The Mansion House across

Of course huge pine trees are present

And of course, flowers

...and more flowers

The magnificent gate of The Mansion House with the Philippine Seal atop

Need I put a caption here? 🙂

A “guard dog”

Baguio Botanical Garden

Finally before heading back to Manila we stopped by the Baguio Botanical Garden.  At first I thought it was just plants (it was my first time to visit the garden) but there were quite some interesting things to see inside, not to mention some stairs to climb.

One of the first monuments to greet you

Japanese - Filipino Peace Memorial Park

With a Torii gate

...and little monks lining the path

Up close of the little monks

Past the Torii gate were a series of tunnels

A gift from Baguio’s sister city, Vallejo, California

...and the workout 🙂

* * * * *

Side Trip: Gerona, Tarlac

Before finally concluding this trip, we made a last stop in Gerona, Tarlac for late night dinner.  It’s a unique and popular place that can be described with one word: “Tacsiapo!”  (Isdaan, The Halfway to the North Floating Restaurant)

The Tacsiapo wall

Choose your pick... then throw it hard at the wall!

Elsewhere are various statues lining the compound

One of the venue of their games where you may win a kilo of fishes

And of course, lots of fishes!

There are also huge monkeys

...and a giant Buddha

Click to view larger map

* * * * *

I wasn’t able to do much as far as running is concerned, but it was a great chance to revisit Baguio.  Now I realize how much I miss running in Baguio, and am looking forward to running back in its streets.

9 Responses to “Baguio City Quickie”

  1. 2011-08-16 at 2:34 PM

    Nice one!

    Becha by golly wow! I’ve been to Baguio countless times yet I haven’t been yet to some of the places you mentioned here. Time to go back!

  2. 2011-08-16 at 6:51 PM

    50s Diner miss ko na yaaaaan!!!! 😀

  3. 2011-08-17 at 12:06 AM

    I have lived almost all my life in Baguio, but I have never ever tried dining yet both at O’Mai Khan and 50’s Diner. These two restaurants are one of my target dining areas when I was still in High School!

    You have took great photos of these places Dhenz, and to my amazement, it’s my first time to see the Philippine’s Seal atop the Mansion house’s gate, and that “guard dog” too =D

    • 2011-08-17 at 12:11 AM

      Thanks Peds! I think the dog is one of the guards’ pet 🙂
      Those two spots are some of my favorites, there are still some reserved for my next visit (whenever that is, hopefully soon)

  4. 2011-08-17 at 11:32 AM

    Great story and some of those pictures are fantastic. I haven’t seen some of those places even though I have lived there for a short time. Maybe I will look a little closer in Oct 2011 when I am back there

    • 2011-08-17 at 1:17 PM

      Thanks John! There are some changes around the city as well as constructions so some things may not be in the same place anymore, or looks much different.

  5. 9 AlexanderCenzon
    2011-08-23 at 9:40 PM

    Next time you’ll visit Baguio message me =) lets do the Yellow Trail at Camp John Hay

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