Trip to Baguio - The City of Pines (Day 1)[★]

June 01, 2013

It's been more than a decade since I last went to the mountains of Baguio that's why I was so thrilled when our barkada (circle of friends) laid out a plan to spend a weekend vacation in the mountains.

It was a 3-days-2-nights trip and here's a rundown of our first out-of-town adventure. :D

Six Hours (Almost) of Travel

Straight after work on a Friday, we went to our scheduled bus trip at Victory Liner, Cubao. It's been a long time also since I got to ride this provincial bus and I must say, their transportation system is very organized. The departure schedules are strictly followed that's why you need to come early to catch the bus, or else you'd be rearranged to another bus but with additional charges and less possibility of actually being accommodated.

What's more, there's free wifi in the bus! YAY!~

Mostly the trip was spent sleeping with music on my ears. Thanks to Soniyah for providing Mellow music for me (via its SensMe™ Channels feature). :D

We were in the zigzag route up to the mountains of Baguio by sunlight and it's such a daze to see the mountains in the morning sunlight.

These are among the beautiful sceneries along the road to Baguio.

Touchdown Baguio!
We arrived at around 7:00AM at the Victory Liner station in Baguio. There's a nearby restaurant named 50's Diner and true enough, you'd feel like in the 50's with the aura of this resto. 

There was some Beatles sound flowing around the room adding up to the atmosphere of posters of old movies on the walls.

I was not really hungry so I ordered pancakes for breakfast. It was served with butter and honey. *yum* I also ordered coffee because I was not able to sleep well in the bus.

I liked how they served the coffee - with milk on the side. It was comforting to drink as it was cold outside.

Visit to Philippine Military Academy (PMA)
Among the numerous tourist spots in Baguio is the PMA Campus. Actually, it kind of reminds me of my UP Diliman Campus, with all the trees and flowers around the area. Apparently, there's an event ongoing for military freshmen that's why relatives of PMA students were present in the campus.

There were lots of souvenirs for sale in the concessionaire booths in the campus. 

There were lots of things to see here, like the airforce planes and battle tanks that are exhibited in the area.

Sweets for Pre-dinner
After going around the PMA campus, we rested for a while and then set off to Camp John Hay to grab some snacks. This Everything Nice, Cake Shop and Café caught our attention so we decided to check it out.

The cakes tasted good but I liked the hot chocolate the most. Maybe I appreciated it more because it was very comforting to sip it in given with a cold drizzling rainy weather outside.

The (Mysterious) Manor
After a comforting sweet treat at the cafe, we went for a quick visit to The Manor, which is also a favorite stop of tourists.

The Manor is a classy fine-dining restaurant with a magnificent architecture that draws the attention of tourists. At night, the aura of the place is very dreamy and romantic, perfect for a sweet date with a loved one. 

Korean Delicacy - Samgyupsal!
After seeing the scenes at The Manor, we rushed the area along Session Road to eat dinner. Our next stop: Pearl Korean Restaurant!

Just like how Xan (one of my friends) described it, the food here was awesome! We've checked out some Korean restaurants in the past (Ara Korean Restaurant and Woorijib) and I think Pearl Korean Restaurant is one of the best and one of the most affordable. All the side dishes were delicious and the samgyupsal was daebak! 

Noraebang Time!
We were all full, tired and sleepy (it was past 10PM already) and we still have one activity left on our itinerary - sing at a noraebang (korean karaoke). Tired all we were, we headed on to the nearest noraebang, as recommended by Kirt (a new friend that we met in Baguio). 

Being outside at night in Baguio felt so different compared to Manila. I felt safe in Baguio. All the people walking in the street are teens who are enjoying the night life in this place. I really enjoyed the cold weather! I didn't even bother to wear an extra jacket because the coldness felt just right.

(My bad, I was not able to take down the name of the noraebang place that we went to. Maybe because I was too tired already. >< I'll update this post as soon as I ask my friends. Anyway, I'm sure that it's along Session Road.) 

I must say, that is the best noraebang I've ever been to! Aside from the hours that we paid, we were also given 20 minutes more for free! Awesome right! But wait, there's more! When we scored a 100 on a song, we got another 5 minutes free. Daebak! Jinja!

In fairness to us, we were able to get a perfect 100 score for a lot of songs! We only paid for an hour of rent, but we actually sang for 1 hour and 30 minutes (it would have been longer because the time did not extend anymore when we got a perfect score during the 20-minute free time).

Of course, I was playing with the tambourine again the whole time. :D This is what I loved with noraebang. The tambourine makes the spirit of the room livelier. I also loved how Kirt sang Korean songs. He was so good in reading Hangul! This is not a surprise since he's been to Korea several times. 

We arrived at our house very tired and sleepy, but it was so fun! And this was just the first day. Stay tuned for my next posts! :D


Read here our second and third day at the Baguio post. :D

More of our first day trip pictures below:

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