Month: March 2016

Panagbenga Festival

I went to Baguio last December and my mother wanted to go with me but I declined and just told her that we’ll go there the following year. She was so excited and said that she wanted to watch the festival wherein there’s a lot of flowers. I knew she was referring to the Panagbenga Festival, so when I saw a great deal on agora.com I immediately booked the room and informed her and my friend Lourdez about it.

I initially planned to travel by bus (Victory Liner) but changed my mind when I found out that it will be very difficult due to the number of tourist going to Baguio. We had a reservation for 2 days and 2 nights (Feb. 28 – Mar. 1). Immediately after the thanksgiving, my mother, uncle and cousin left our house in Laguna. They just picked me up in Q-Mart and we ate goto first before we leave.
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I’m not familiar with the route going to Baguio and it will also be the first time that my Uncle will go there. He’s our driver and since we don’t know our way, we agreed that we’ll follow Google maps.

We took the Pulilan exit going to Apalit to pick up Lourdez. Good thing she was already outside the Convention Center when we arrived.

My mother don’t want us to take the expressway to save money. I’ve tried to search for an alternative route since the map only suggest routes taking NLEX. We’ve followed walking routes going to Baguio and we passed by Magalang and Mexico, Pampanga. The road was so deserted and my mother got scared and changed her mind and wants us to take NLEX. When we arrived in Tarlac and we’re already near the exit she changed her mind again and just want us to take the national road. I’ve decided to take NLEX since I know that she will not be able to rest while traveling if we don’t know our way and we’re also pressured because we have to arrive there before the start of the parade.

I can’t remember the exit but after NLEX we took SCTEX and for the first time, we took TPLEX. It looks like a never ending highway wherein we’re not seeing any vehicle southbound and very few going north. My Uncle wants us to take the nearest exit because we might ran out of diesel but we’re not seeing any. We arrived in Urdaneta, Pangasinan around 5 am and we rested for about 20 minutes on the first gasoline station that we found.

We passed by La Union and there’s a toll gate when we entered Benguet and the fee was 10 pesos. We just followed the map and it took us to Kennon Road. It’s the most dangerous route going to Baguio and I didn’t know that yet during our travel.

Our engine had difficulty going up the mountains and we had to made a few stops and even get a stone for our wheel (kalso).

We’re all scared, so I decided to just park in SM Baguio since we can’t go to the hotel due to road closure. I told my mother that we’ll just take PUV in traveling around the city.

We’re able to watch the parade along session road. The floats were really magnificent and we even saw Coco Martin, Maja Salvador, Jayson and Melai.
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After the parade, we left Kuya Nog in the parking area, so he can sleep.

Me and the rest went to Burnham park. It looks like there’s a given space for each group to have a mini garden. All the designs were unique and very beautiful. So beautiful that we can’t even believe that those were actual flowers. We’re even joking that those things were plastic.

Mama bought different cactuses and other plants (don’t know their names). We had fun. We really enjoyed seeing all the different souvenir items that they’re selling on the park.

We had a hard time looking for our hotel. I’ve called them a lot of times and we’re given different instructions. We’re all tired, sleepy and a bit frustrated. Until I’ve decided to ask people in the area. We’re finally given the correct instruction and I’m so shocked when I found out that it’s located near our church because if that’s the given landmark then I should’ve known how to get there quicker.

The road was so steep and too high for our vehicle to climb the road to the hotel, so it was really a good thing when we decided to just left it in the mall.

Lourdez and I went back to SM since all our things were left behind and Kuya Nog don’t know how to go to our hotel. I’m glad we slept first and had some time to rest before we return, since our things were so heavy and the roads in Baguio are so steep.

After dinner, we went to the night market to buy Ukay-ukay and eat lots of food. I only bought a few clothes since I bought a lot the first I went there.

Dez got lost and I spent almost an hour looking for her. All of us had a hard time looking for each other.

I ate sisig first and ordered another one for Lourdez, then decided to return to the hotel to check if she’s already there.

Well, she’s not there when I arrived but she came in after a couple of minutes then the rest returned as well with a lot of Ukay-Ukay.

We’re all really tired that night.

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SECOND DAY

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Free breakfast was included on the accommodation including the free coffee that they have at the dining area.

1. Mines View

2. The Mansion

3. Wright Park

4. Botanical Garden

5. Philippine Military Academy / Museum

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~The end~

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