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A Baguio Trip to Remember

Baguio has always been my heaven. I fell in love with the city during my freshman days at the University of the Philippines Baguio. Although I stayed there for only a year (I transferred to UP Diliman and took another course), my love for Baguio hasn’t changed.

And yes, I consider myself very lucky for having visited the city again last summer. I left Quezon City at 11:00 pm on May 25. As usual, I took a Victory Liner bus.

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The trip was long and it was a good thing I was able to sleep in the duration of it. By the time I reached Baguio, I was already energized.

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The original plan was to head straight to Cafe by the Ruins for breakfast. But since I got there at around 6:00 am and the cafe would not open until 7:00 am, I stayed at McDonald’s Insular first and enjoyed a glass of Plain Iced Coffee.

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I left McDonald’s minutes after 7:00 and went to Cafe by the Ruins. It was my first time there and I was amazed with what I saw.

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I ordered a cup of Ruins Cafe and a Steak Sandwich. I enjoyed the rich flavor of the coffee and had fun wolfing down the mouthwatering sandwich. What a way to start your day in the City of Pines!

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After breakfast, I hired a cab to take me to and from BenCab Museum. Actually, I just followed a friend’s advice. Since there was no assurance that I could easily get a cab in the area, that friend of mine advised me to just hire a cab and ask the driver to wait for me and take me back to the city proper. I had to shell out P500 for this, but it was worth it.

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I went to Camp John Hay after. It was funny, because I learned that there was also a TechnoHub inside it. It was the Baguio version of the complex where my office was located. Like the one found in QC, it also had its own Starbucks branch. I ended up ordering an Iced Grande Cafe Latte. I also stayed there for a while. Then, I took a walk around Camp John Hay.

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At lunch time, I hailed a cab and headed to AJ’s Pension House for check-in. I allowed myself to get some sleep after. I woke up at around 5:00 pm. I took a shower and went straight to 50’s Diner along Leonard Wood Road. As usual, I ordered by all-time favorite combo meal. Mama’s Kid, yo! I also had a serving of Kamikaze.

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I walked to SM Baguio after that early dinner. I didn’t really buy anything from the mall. I just wanted to enjoy the view from its viewing decks–just like the old times.

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Then, I walked down Session Road. I went to Rumours and enjoyed Rum Coke and Margarita. I got tipsy after. It also started to rain, but it was a good thing that I was still able to walk going to the pension house. I fell asleep easily. I think it was around 9:00 pm.

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Things started early the next day. I went out of the pension house at around 7:00 am and headed to Pizza Volante along Session Road for breakfast. I ordered a regular serving of plain Pasta Alfredo and a glass of Iced Coffee.

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Next destination was La Trinidad. Unable to find the right jeepney terminal, I decided to just take a cab going to the famous La Trinidad Strawberry Farm. I don’t really know what got into my head, but I tried strawberry picking. The said experience, along with 1 kg of strawberries, costed me P500. It was challenging, but it was really a great experience.

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From there, I took a jeepney going back to the city proper. Then, I dropped by Burnham Park. Classic.

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For some reason, I decided to have lunch at Jollibee. I had Chickenjoy, which was weird. I guess it didn’t really matter, though. After all, that meal made me happy. After lunch, I went to Baguio Museum. I was saddened by the fact that despite the volume of tourists in the city during that time, only a few bothered to visit the museum. They could have had learned a lot about Baguio and nearby municipalities like I did.

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Of course, I did not miss the chance to visit UP Baguio, which was close to the museum. I felt happy to have seen the lobby as well as the other parts of the campus, where I had so many memories as a freshman student.

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From UP Baguio, I headed to Casa Vallejo. Since it was raining again, I decided to have coffee at the Hill Station. I ordered a cup of Cordillera Heirloom Coffee.

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At 4:30 pm, I went to Cinematheque for the From Ili to City Short Film Festival and watched films created by the communication students of UP Baguio. After the screening, I went to Mt. Cloud Bookshop and bought a cute notebook.

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Already in love with Casa Vallejo, I decided to go back to the Hill Station for dinner. I had Creamy Mushroom Soup, Beef Salpicao, New York Cheesecake, and a glass of wine whose name I can no longer remember. Also, I decided not to take any photo during the dinner. I wanted it to be sacred, I guess. After dinner, I walked to the pension house and slept.

I woke up early the next day. I prepared, packed, and checked out immediately, in preparation for the Vigan trip. Yet, before going to the bus station, I had breakfast at Beans Talk first. I ordered Creamed Beef, which came with a cup of brewed coffee. I ate it while enjoying the view of the busy Session Road.

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Right after breakfast, I went to the public market. I bought half a kilo each of Benguet and Kalinga Coffee from Garcia’s Pure Coffee.

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Finally, I walked to the bus station right below SM and took a Partas Bus bound for Vigan, Ilocos Sur.

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