Baguio, A Feast for the Eyes

By Ralph Matthew Gabriel | Fotograpiya

For most of us in Metro Manila, the intense 38 to 45 degree summer heat in Metro Manila drives us crazy, and makes us think of going out on a literally cool summer adventure.

Aside from swimming, there are only two choices left to get cool during summer, travelling to Baguio city or Tagaytay. Although Tagaytay is the more affordable choice, nothing beats the experience that Baguio has to offer.

In my recent Baguio family fun blogger adventure courtesy of Azalea Residences Baguio, we were treated to a fun-filled, worry free adventure to the highlands of the Mountain Province.

When my dad asked me to join the Azalea blogger event, I didn’t have any second thoughts about it. I packed my bags and readied my Nikon camera for this family fun weekday getaway opportunity.

Upon reaching Azalea Residences, we ate lunch at the famous Tradisyon Pinoy Comfort Food restaurant in Azalea Residences and were immediately sent to tour around the city of Pines.

FIRST STOP.

Ililik-ha Artists Village

ili-likha artist village
Photo by Ralph Matthew Gabriel

Located along Assumption Road and a few steps away from Session road, Ililik-ha Artists Village is a place where creatives meet and share their artistic talents. At first glance, you wouldn’t notice the place except for an overgrown tree and a mysterious entrance that appears to be guiding you to the seemingly depths of the unknown.

Ililikha Artist Village Entrance, baguio, baguio city
Ililikha Artist Village Entrance, Photo by Ralph Matthew Gabriel

We were introduced to several artist members of this community and each of them had their share of insights on what this artist community has in store for us.

Baguio Artist, baguio, baguio city, ililikha artist village
Baguio Artist with his bamboo guitar invention, Photo by Ralph Matthew Gabriel
Ililikha Artist Village, Baguio, Baguio city, azalea
Ililikha Artist Village, Photo by Ralph Matthew Gabriel

Snacks were served and we were treated with a healthy dose of Mountain Salad.

Mountain Salad, Baguio city, Azalea, Azalea Residences
Mountain Salad, Photo by Ralph Matthew Gabriel

SECOND STOP.

Tam-awan Village. A venue for art exhibits, workshops and other activities that showcase the rich cultural heritage of the Cordillera people.

Tam-awan Village, baguio, baguio city, azalea, azalea residences, azalea baguio
Woodcarvings, Tam-awan Village, Photo by Ralph Matthew Gabriel

Tam-awan village is where most of the Weekday Holiday bloggers had their sketches taken. We were treated with samplings of hot tea, while waiting for our turn to get sketched.

Tam-awan Village
Weekday Holiday Bloggers Having their Sketches done, Photo by Ralph Matthew Gabriel

THIRD STOP.

Mount Jumbo, Mount Yangbo, Mount Yangbew.

Funny as it is, there are a lot of different variations in the name of this beginner pinoy trekker mountain trail. The first few meters was an easy climb as the trail is made of concrete. Once the concrete trail ended, I begin to feel like ‘my will was being tested’. Lucky enough, I was able to conquer Mount Jumbo in less than 40 minutes.

The Author and Mount Jumbo, Photo by Rod Gabriel
The Author and Mount Jumbo, Photo by Rod Gabriel

Here’s the rest of the Weekday Holiday Bloggers, on their way down to Strawberry Farm.

azalea group getawat, azalea, azalea baguio, mount yangbew, mount jumbo
Weekday Holiday Bloggers, Photo By Ralph Matthew Gabriel

FOURTH STOP.

Strawberry Farm, and Market.

The fourth leg of our tour gave us the opportunity to have a quick stop in Strawberry Farm and Market, in La Trinidad, Benguet. Pasalubongs are a must. I do suggest that whenever you go to Baguio, make sure that you drop by this place. This place is a treasure trove of great deals.

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Baguio Native Brooms, Photo by Ralph Matthew Gabriel

Baguio native brooms sell for as low as 150 to 180 Pesos. You can actually buy them by threes for only 350 Pesos.

strawberry ice cream, baguio, baguio city
The Strawberry Ice Cream of Baguio, Photo by Ralph Matthew Gabriel

My great find. The Matamis Pramis Strawberry Ice Cream of Baguio never fails to be true to its tagline. Talagang matamis, promise!

Ripe and Fresh Strawberries Straight from the Farm, Photo by Ralph Matthew Gabriel
Ripe and Fresh Strawberries Straight from the Farm, Photo by Ralph Matthew Gabriel

FIFTH STOP.

Wright Park and Camp John Hay Horseback Riding.

This is the part which I enjoyed the most. It is the second time that I was able to ride a horse, not for a pictorial but an actual ride from Wright Park up to Camp John Hay where a picnic lunch is waiting for the Weekday Holiday bloggers. Best of all, the horse assigned to me was highly cooperative and was following my every pull and turn.

baguio, baguio city
My horseback riding experience, Photo by Ralph Matthew Gabriel

FINAL STOP

The next part which I like the most was our entire stay in Azalea Residences Baguio, where a basket full of fruits, and friendly fun was waiting for us every time we arrive from our tour. From the food that was served in Tradisyon, the warm and friendly hospitality that we get from the staff, up to the cozy and homey rooms that always welcome me, whenever we reenergize from each trip that we make in Baguio.

tradisyon, baguio, baguio city, azalea residences, azalea baguio
Photo by Ralph Matthew Gabriel
azalea, azalea baguio, azalea residences, azalea residences baguio
Azalea Residences Baguio, By Ralph Matthew Gabriel

Thank you Azalea Residences Baguio. You are worth the trip!

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If you plan to make every trip to the City of Pines an experience to keep, make sure that you book your stay at Azalea Residences, Baguio. Azalea Residences is Baguio’s first and only 4-star serviced apartment hotel that will make every family vacation, group getaway, or romantic retreat more memorable. Guests will be delighted to experience Azalea’s modern and generously appointed hotel facilities that comes complete with kitchen equipment, dining and entertainment area.

Looking forward to be back in Baguio soon.