The City of Baguio is a highly urbanized city located in northern Luzon island in the Philippines. The city has become the center of business and commerce as well as the center of education in the entire Northern Luzon. Baguio City was established by Americans in 1900 at the site of an Ibaloi village known as Kafagway. The name of the city is derived from the word bagiw in Ibaloi, the indigenous language of the Benguet Region, meaning ‘moss’. The region around Baguio was first settled primarily by the Ibalois and the Kankanaeys.
When the Americans took possession of the Philippines ,Baguio was selected by a party to become the summer capital of the Philippines. In 1903 Filipino, Japanese and Chinese workers were hired to build Kennon Road, the first road directly connecting Baguio with the lowlands of Pangasinan. Before this, the only road to Benguet was Naguilian Road.
Baguio retains its title as the Summer Capital of the Philippines because its cool temperature is a much needed respite from the tropical heat that the rest of the country endures to any place in the Philippine lowlands. The average temperature is from 15-26˚C, and it can drop down to 8˚C from December to early February. The weather follows the typical Philippines’ seasons: Dry Season from October to May and the Wet Season from June to September.
Main Tourist Attraction:
- Burnham Park– the ‘mother of all parks’ is located at the most valuable piece of Baguioreal estate and is free for the enjoyment of visitors and residents alike.
- Baguio Cathedral – a majestic church located on top of a hill in the heart of the city
- Session Road – the main avenue of Baguio City and its commercial center, with quaint shops lining each side, Session Road is the most popular road in the City ofPines.
- Camp John Hay – is Baguio City’s most popular visitor attraction. A beautiful resort in the mountains it features a world class competition Jack Niclaus-designed golf course (said to be the only course in the Philippines to have bentgrass greens) as well as hotels, a shopping center & a convention center, among other attractions.
- The Mansion – The official summer residence of the President of thePhilippines
- Wright Park– features the much photographed Baguio landmark, the “Pool of Pines”. One will see a gazebo and a long flight of stairs down the hill leading to the Wright Park Riding Circle, where hundreds of horses and ponies of various sizes are for hire.
- Mines View Park– boasts of a spectacular view of Benguet’s gold and copper mines and the Cordillera mountains
- Baguio Botanical Garden– showcases the growing pine seedlings and other flora and fauna for the constant “greening” of Baguio.
- Philippine Military Academy– boast of a long and illustrious history of preparing only the best Filipino men (and, in recent times, women) for military service. Visitors are welcome to explore the grounds, view the cadets performing their drills, and explore the PMA museum and walk around its manicured grounds to see vintage tanks and other historical military weapons.
- Kennon Road– Historic Kennon Road is the shortest access route to Baguio City. As it snakes through Bued River Canyon, one will see many beautiful waterfalls, pine trees and wild sunflowers.
- Mount Santo Tomas – This is Baguio’s highest peak, the one that offers a 360˚ degree view of Baguio City, La Union Province below and the South China Seaon the horizon.
- Lourdes Grotto – a favorite pilgrimage site during Holy Week most especially during Holy Thursday and Good Friday. Access to the top of the grotto could be made by climbing the long steps or by driving up a winding road
Activities & Leisure:
- Baguio Flower Festival (February)
- Strawberry Season ( Nov – May)
- Tossed Salad Festival ( Oct – Dec)