RT Cunningham

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A Trip to Baguio City, Philippines

Tagged with baguio city, burnham park, philippines, restaurants on May 13, 2024

Baguio City, Philippines As far as the city of Baguio is concerned, I went, I saw, and I wasn’t impressed. You can get a lot of information about the city from the Wikipedia page about it, and I won’t be repeating any of it here.

Visiting Family

My younger son, Jon, and his family are visiting from the United States. His wife, my daughter-in-law Cathy, planned it for months. Their son, my grandson Ezra, isn’t liking things too much. With the heat and humidity higher than it should be, he spends most of his time in one of the air-conditioned rooms in my house.

Jon’s visit is only for about three weeks. He’s in the military, and they won’t give him any more than 30 days at a time anyway. Cathy and Ezra are limited to a year, as balikbayans (former Filipino residents) since both of them are American citizens.

They came here for Ezra’s birthday party. He turned four last week. My wife, Josie, ordered a roast pig (lechon baboy) along with a hundred Jollibee Chickenjoy meals. Each meal had a single piece of chicken and a serving of Filipino-style Spaghetti. Everything else was cooked by Josie and her siblings. There was nothing left after relatives, and the children of relatives, consumed everything.

The Trip to Baguio

Cathy reserved a room in a condominium while she was still in the United States. To get a room in the heart of the city, the room has to be reserved for more than a month in advance. The room turned out to be substandard, but she paid less than $150 USD for it. We checked in on Friday morning, and we checked out on Sunday morning.

Our taxi-driving relative, Alex, drove the van to Baguio. There were nine people in that van, including the driver. It was a tight squeeze for about four hours, going there and coming back. Six of them were on Cathy’s side of the family (her and her parents, one of her brothers and one of her aunts), but only three on Jon’s side (him and his parents).

We stopped to eat on the way to Baguio, ate in Baguio four times, and we stopped to eat on the way back. There was only one restaurant that impressed me within Baguio City, and it was called “GoodTaste Restaurant”. It was less expensive than any place in Olongapo, where I live. It confirmed my suspicion that Olongapo is overpriced in every way.

We spent a few hours at Burnham Park on Saturday. We all rode some weird three and four-wheeled bikes. Everyone but me and Alex rode a boat on the artificial lake. We had pictures taken at some point, wearing indigenous tribal costumes.

My Impressions

Called the “Summer Capital of the Philippines”, the only real thing Baguio has going for it is the lower temperature. Even at this time of the year, you can sleep well with only an electric fan to cool you off. The city is more crowded than Olongapo, with a lot more traffic. Most of the roads don’t have traffic signs or lights to control traffic. Crossing the street takes way longer than it should.

As I told the rest of my companions, it would have been less expensive and much more relaxing to simply crank up my air conditioner and eat at home. In the end, it still would have cost us all less. Thankfully, that was my first and last trip to Baguio. I have no desire to visit it twice, for any reason.

Image by Patrickroque01, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

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