The sun is half smiling when we arrived in summer capital of the Philippines – Baguio City.  A combination of a hot coffee, with tasty bread and scrambled egg is enough to adjust our body temperature into a cold surroundings. After an ample time of short conversation we headed to the first place listed on our pre-itinerary plan. Yes, my friend cum tour guide is indeed a girl scout when it comes to travelling. She knows the tourist spot and make a plan to maximize our stay there.

First stop is Camp John Hay which is southern part of Baguio. From the entrance gate, you will feel the whisper of cold wind and a shadow of big trees covering the pathway. I thought its just an ordinary place but when I saw the Bell Ampitheater downstair encircled with varities of plants it simply create a pleasant scenario in my eyes.  The place is undeniably perfect for romantic setting.  We took a step down and every corner is a good spot for picture taking. We take advantage of shooting our jumpshot when we heard a loud noise shouting at us. There’s only few people so we figure its not allowed to do such scene.  Though, a bit afraid we leave quickly only to find out that a group of people were also doing the same thing. Haha…for sure they wanted us to leave so that they can solely own the area. Anyway, we already have a memorable pics so we let them filled their tour with freedom like what we did.

good place to unwind...

Main entrance of Camp John Hay and our nth time jumpshot..ayieee...

There’s more to see in Camp John Hay. Bell House, a few step from Ampitheater, is a modern museum of American architecture and lifestyle. It was primarily a rest house of General J. Franklin Bell, Commanding General Of the Philippines, where the name of the Museum were named after him. Our group tour the whole premises from the  living room where an old piano on the left side was an attention-seeker to all incoming guest. We then went straight to bedroom just to check what kind of furniture they used few years back.  Taking picture on their antique dining table was one of our memorabilia and seeing the green forest while we were on the veranda invites us to explore the place and find more relaxation on our trip.


When we step out from the museum, we felt at ease to delve into lush trees dancing to the tune of freeze wind. At first, a garden of fresh flower welcome us then we encounter a signage ‘Becoming a Haven’. Though a short history was written on the board, I’m bit ashamed of not able to give some minute of reading what was it all about. It’s just I was fascinated with the place and what I want to do is look at the outnumber of pines trees around.

On the middle of the forest we found ‘Our Secret Garden‘. Inclined to see what’s inside, we proceed accordingly. Of course, a walloping pine trees envelop our main curiousity. It’s something like you went on garden area but instead of feeling amazed with varities of flower, you will look head up high to those lofty trees.

I was amazed with the way they buried all the negativities of life in a tomb called Cemetery of Negativism, again located inside Camp John Hay. Once you started glancing what is embossed on the stone you won’t leave the area unless you read all what is written on each tomb. Somehow it gives me a space to think some other negatives that I want to leave there.

After burying all unwanted emotion, we went to a mini-park next to it. By then the place started to be crowded as a group of students, maybe they were on fieldtrip, was so excited to tour inside. We just take a short rest and ate snickers chocolate as our light snacks.

When we got a cab, we ask the driver to drop us at Botanical Garden. Right from the gate we saw some Igorots who were happily smiling in the camera along with some group of tourist.

When the area was clear and Igorots was busy on their lunch on the other side, my friend took advantage to have a solo picture with the big signage of Botanical Garden as her background. My other friend who suppose to take the shot set the camera in advance. When she’s counting 1,2,3….all Igorots leave their plates and run as fast as they can for them to be included also on the same picture. Instead of taking solo it became a group picture whereas we pay a total of php120.00 distributed to all of them. After our comfortable walk inside the Botanical Garden, we directly went to 50’s Diners for a gastronomical experience.

Botanical Garden

As much as possible, we want to visit all the tourist destination in Baguio. Even for just 15 minutes we manage to drop by in The Mansion for our group picture taking. Opposite of the rest house is an elongated pathway leading to “Pool of Pines” with towering pines trees on both side. It is the well-known Wright Park at the eastern part of Baguio City. Its so relaxing to embrace the coldest temperature while we were walking in the patio. On the other side of the park a numerous guest were pretty enjoying their horseback riding. We keep our eyes busy staring at them and after a while we take another cab for our next destination.

Unlike some places we recently visited, Mines View Park are total package of crowds favorites. Every area is jampack of people enjoying their chances to see the breathtaking scenery which highlighted the mountainous side of Baguio. Mines View  is not only famous for being a place of good relaxation but a place where we met the wonder dog, Douglas. For Php10.00 you could accompany him to be part of once in a lifetime photo. We also got an opportunity to dress like a typical Igorots by renting their native dress. There’s a long line of tourist who want to pose in a cam while riding in pony with pink hair. For the sake of picture, even two of my friend try it without showing any appearance of fear. The best thing about the place is its capacity to cater every one needs–from food stall where we can choose anything we want, a souvenir shop or simply feel astonish with the beauty of Baguio City.

Located in the same compund of Mines View is the Cordillera World where we saw many souvenir items. Small amount of donation and more picture is enough to filled our trip with so much memories.

We reached Burnham Park when the gloomy night started to envelop the whole place. Some people were already rowing in a man-made lake while other were so contented to look on the side. You can choose either to rent the boat and you will do the rowing or rent the boat along with the boatman. Since it was past 6:00pm and boating seems a tiring activities, we choose the latter. We all sit in one boat and let the boatman tour us for 45 minutes. I notice that some of the boat ensembles a cartoon character which is more likely pleasing to the eye during day time. Instead of finishing the alloted time, we decide to go home for our dinner.

We are so blessed to visit those mentioned places above in full day. Aside from the tourist destination that inspires us to appreciate more the beauty of Philippines, we feel bless to be surrounded with people having a good heart. After our fulfilling tour we received a call from my friend’s father who invited us to come over for a dinner. So blessed to meet them. Baguio is known for its fresh vegies, so what better food to eat there other than a serving of newly harvested vegetables. We had chopseuy and fish as our dinner. After our meet and greet ( and for super yummy food), he accompanied us to their apartment where we will spend our night. Of course, we need to reserve our energy for our 2nd and last day itinerary.


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. rommel
    Mar 12, 2012 @ 01:14:35

    You write so well of your travel.
    Did you get to those old huts? I think it’s called Hugduan, or something like that.


    • loidabestdiscovery
      Mar 13, 2012 @ 21:54:11

      Thank you Rommel. We never been to Tam-awan village, a place where travellers can see a lot of ifugao old houses. It’s supposed to be part of our itinerary but due to our limited time period, we choose to explore other places. Anyway, we also saw some huts in botanical garden and took picture of it. Kontento na kami dun. Maybe next time…. (*;*)


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