This post is written specifically with first time visitors and tourists to Baguio in mind. This is a sample itinerary for those who are taking a break from work or school and will stay in Baguio for 3D/2N. If this will be your first time in going to the Summer Capital, I would hazard a guess and say that you want to maximize your holiday. Maximizing of course, means visiting as many must see tourist destinations as you can, right?
I might be wrong heheh actually it depends on your main purpose in going to Baguio, but if I was a first –timer I would definitely want to visit the top tourist spots of this cold city. The second visit will be mark for more off the beaten path destinations, the third just to relax or go for more extreme adventure. That will be my ideal vacation in Baguio. Ideal, because it didn’t happen that way for me hehe. \o/
Baguio Sample Itinerary Assumption: Long weekend, you leave Manila on Thursday night, arrive in Baguio Friday morning. You are staying somewhere near Session Road area or with any of the hotels surrounding Burnham Park.
Advise: Get an affordable hotel or pension house, there are many options you just need to do some research. Ideally before you get to the city you should already have a room reservation especially if you are coming during peak season like Panagbenga Festival, summer time or long weekends and holidays. Or if you don’t have reservation, at least you should have an idea of cheap accommodations that you want to check out before you sign up for your room.
I would strongly recommend NOT TO GET an ultra-cheap pension inn that does not have a water heater. I don’t know if there is one existing but just in case. Baguio can get really, really cold. You’d deal with hypothermia if your shower doesn’t have a heater. Or you can tour without taking a bath haha.
Day 1 in Baguio Itinerary
Hotel Search / Rest – Wright Park – The Mansion – Mines View – Good Shepherd – SM Baguio – Ukay Ukay in Harrisson Road
*Yep, I added in SM Baguio because chances are you can’t help but visit it. It’s the only non-airconditioned SM mall in the Philippines plus its huge and looms over in Luneta Hill, at the end of Session Road. A refuge to poor souls who are not used to the cold and chilly winds. I know I’ve made a dash to this mall in countless times haha.
**Baguio 2013 minimum fare on jeepney is P8.50.
How to get to Wright Park via jeepney
If you are in Session Road, ask to be directed to McDonalds in corner Mabini St. Walk down Mabini Street, you will see the Mines View jeepney terminal. Adjacent to the terminal is a famous local bakery shop, “Danes”.
There are two routes that go to Mines View, one is via Gibraltar. But since you are going first to Wright Park, go for the other one. My favorite advice as always is to ask the driver for confirmation if his jeepney will pass by Wright Park and to drop you off when you get to the area. Jeepney fare is P10.
Your stop is hard to miss since you’ll see lots of horses trotting on the park. When you see them, you are in Wright Park vicinity, time to get off the jeepney. =)
How to get to The Mansion from Wright Park
If you see the horses lined up in their waiting / holding area, you’ll also be seeing this long stair. Yep, you have to climb it to get to the Wright Park mini pond. Don’t be embarrassed if you take breaks in between climbing the steps, we took lots of breaks in guise of picture taking haha. At the top, you’ll pass by a structure where you can have another set of pics taken. Walk further, you will see the mini pond of the park and yonder you’ll make out the gate of The Mansion.
The Mansion of course is the summer residence for the President of the Philippines. Too bad tourists are not allowed beyond the entrance ground.
How to go to Mines View from The Mansion
What we did was walked it hahah. I would suggest you don’t walk but instead take the jeepney that passes by in front of The Mansion. Fare is P8.50. But if you have time, it can be a relaxing walk except on that part where it’s a bit inclined. But I got a good pic in the middle of our walk, so that makes it worth it for me. ^_^
Walking is easy, it’s just straight ahead. You will then come across an intersection, on the left side you will see carenderias and bulalohan, I think it’s a favorite eating place of drivers so it won’t be surprising if you see taxis park-up. Anyhow, take the left road.
The road from then on will be uphill until you get to Mines View Park, but don’t despair because the famous overlooking tourist spot in Baguio is near. \o/
Direction tips from Mines View to Good Shepherd Baguio
When you get out of Mines View and see that long line of vendors on the street mostly selling cardigan jackets, crochet shirts, some pasalubong foods too. At the end of that street, on the right is the gate of Good Shepherd. You can buy their famous Ube Jam from here. Relax a bit, have snack. They got good rolls there and you can even have a good cup of alamid coffee.
Good Shepherd Baguio back to City Center – SM or Session Road
The jeepney terminal in Mines View is at the corner of the street after Good Shepherd. There might be a bit of waiting time as the driver fills up the jeepney. Fare is P10. I would suggest you request the driver to drop you off nearest to SM Baguio or Session Road and just walk it. If you will wait for the jeepney to complete its turn back to their terminal in Mabini St, it will take a lot of time since their return routes are more complicated and Baguio traffic can be heavy at peak hours.
The most famous road of Baguio! Yes I did have a pic on my first visit by the street sign that says “Session Road” Heheh
Go Ukay Ukay Bargain Hunting
Along Session Road are popular ukay ukay jaunts but I did not visit it. I was looking forward to the ukay ukay street scene in Harrison Road which starts at 9pm. Part of Harrison, that part fronting Burnham Park complex, is close to traffic. Lots of ukay ukay vendors will display their wares and lots of tourists are diving in looking for the best find.
When we were there the first night the place was jam-packed with bargain hunters. I’ve asked one vendor until what time they are there on Harrison, was told they are there till midnight but they can stay until 2 am, if they can survive the cold.
This is just DAY 1 of a Sample Baguio Itinerary. This itinerary can take a whole day; you may want to skip some places. The cool thing about visiting the Day 1 tourist spots is that there is no entrance fees whatsoever! Great news for us who are on an affordable tour of Baguio! 🙂
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Heyyy, remember sometimes spontaneity is best, so just make this Baguio itinerary samples as guide when you are vacationing in the city.
Ultimately, best experiences happen without sticking to an itinerary. Make room for surprises and detours. ^_^
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