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Vacation in Baguio, Philippines

 
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melgibbs's pictureby melgibbs review
added on 26th of August, 2008

Retreat to the Mountains of Baguio City

High up in the mountains of Benguet in Northern Luzon lies Baguio City - the summer capital of the Philippines. The cold weather and urbane environment attracts a flock of tourists yearly as it offers an escape from the heat and hustle of city life. This article provides an overview of this immensely popular Philippine getaway.

History

Established by the Americans at an Ibaloi village in 1900, Baguio comes from the Ibaloi word “bagiw,” meaning “moss,” which was once abundant on the site of Burnham Lake, one of Baguio’s popular tourist attractions. The city began as a settlement of roughly just twenty homes. The Americans intended for it to merely be a retreat from the heat of the lowlands.

When the war in the Pacific broke out in 1941, the city was bombed and inhabited by the Japanese. After their surrender in 1943, Baguio immediately began rehabilitation. In 1990, an earthquake hit the place but the city was quickly rebuilt.

Geography

Baguio is nestled at an altitude of about 1500 meters, on a plateau in the Cordillera mountain range. It is the only city in the province of Benguet. It spans about 49 square kilometers of prime, urbanized property. The city is 250 kilometers north of Metro Manila - roughly a 6-hour drive. Three roads lead to the city from the lowlands: Marcos Highway, Kennon Road, and Naguilian Road.

People and Culture

According to the latest census, Baguio has a population of 252,386 individuals spread across 52,302 households. Several languages and dialects are spoken by its people, including Kankana-ey, Ibaloi, English, Ilocano, Tagalog, and Chinese.

Baguio is an education center, its economy being centered on this. There are eight major institutions for higher education. The Northern Luzon campus of the University of the Philippines can be found here, as well as the Philippine Military Academy, the University of Baguio, and Baguio Central University.

Weather

There are only 2 seasons in Baguio, much like the rest of the Philippines. These are the wet and dry seasons, which last equally throughout the year. November to April are the dry months, while the wet season runs from May to October. The city temperature is always about 10 degrees cooler than in the lowlands, with an average of 20 degrees Celsius.

Main Attractions and Sights

Visitors will never run out of things to do in the City of Pines, as Baguio boasts of a wide array of activities, tourist spots, and attractions. One of the most famous destinations in Baguio is The Mansion, which is the official residence of the President of the Philippines. Though, it is not open to the public, people still flock here to take pictures in front of its majestic gate and well-manicured lawns.

Another famous string of attractions are the parks of Baguio: Burnham Park, Wright Park, and Minesview Park. Vacationers and tourists can enjoy rowing in the lake in Burnham Park, view the Pool of Pines in Wright Park, and enjoy the sights in Minesview Park. Session Road, Baguio’s main avenue, is an attraction in itself with its seemingly endless line of shops and restaurants.

 

Things about Baguio you may be interested in

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guides

Recommended Baguio Guide

Baguio Nightlife

When adventure is endless at daytime, it should be overwhelming at night so that tourists are pampered. Baguio City has lived up to that expectation. Because it is 8 degrees cooler in Baguio than any lowlands in the country, coffee can become your best friend, or you might want to wear jackets or sweaters just to warm you especially when you’re here from May to November. Called the “City of Pines”, Baguio offers travelers a fine array of accommodations, cozy pension houses and small hotels to stay overnight. Coziness is apparently felt as you check in the front desk. For affordable and comfortable night’s rest, you can stay at... Read more »

 
 
reviews

Recent reviews for Baguio

Memories about Fort San Pedro - May 16, 2009, by ultimatetravel
First Visit: I remember when I was a kid, my parents decided to go to Fort San Pedro and have a visit there. So they tagged me along, that was the first time I saw my parents so sweet, like a date or something. I never expected that I... Read more »

Centuries old house in Cebu - May 15, 2009, by ultimatetravel
My students in HRM and Tourism Management, my hubby and I went out to a Field Trip and visited one of the oldest houses in Parian (a place where the richest people in Cebu lived) as what I have remembered what my history teacher discussed... Read more »

The best thing in Lapu-lapu City - May 17, 2009, by ultimatetravel
This kind of beach outing that my students and I have was planned around 1 week or so. That's how short noticed it is. Anyways, 3 of my students were talking about banana ride and how cool it is and all of us should ride on it. They were... Read more »

Short vacation in Manila - May 31, 2009, by ultimatetravel
It was never on plan that my husband and I are going to Manila. It was out of necessity. Since we are planning to get married at that time and we think we can process some papers here in Cebu at the Consul but however due to some... Read more »

Yap-Sandiego, the treasure of Cebu - May 16, 2009, by ultimatetravel
The Yap-San Diego Ancestral Home is referred to as "bahay na bato" which means a house made out of stone. Yes, the house was made out of stone but not just ordinary stone but "coral stones" and they used egg white to let... Read more »

 
 

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