It’s been a month now since we went up north to Baguio City to check out Azalea Residences Baguio.
There was a storm brewing when we went there so we thought that there was nothing to do but to enjoy the hotel and its wonderful amenities, which is not really a bad idea.
There are just so many things that I liked about this place – their Boracay and Baguio accommodation are both a dream to experience.
READ MORE: What I Liked About Azalea Residences Baguio
READ MORE: What I Liked About Azalea Boracay
Still, it would be a shame to visit Baguio City after almost two decades without being able to at least see some of the sights I’ve missed so much.
Last time I was there was in the summer of 1998, perfect weather so we were able to go to some of the major tourist spots in the province – I have listed some of the places that we’ve visited below:
- Mines View Park
- Good Shepherd
- Bell Church
- Baguio Cathedral
- Baguio Public Market
- Tam Awan Village
- Camp John Hay
- Burnham Park
We even went to as far as La Trinidad to experience strawberry picking. I even bought some fresh strawberries, vegetables and “walis tambo” to take home.
But that was on a clear day. So the question is, what to do and where to go on a rainy day Baguio weekend?
It has to be indoors and it has to be somewhere in the vicinity of Azalea so if the storm worsens we can easily go back to the hotel for some hot cocoa. 🙂
Well it’s glad to know that our kind hosts from Azalea, has some kind of contingency for this sort of thing. A rainy day weekend sight-seeing is indeed possible. Here’s our itinerary:
- Baguio Museum, Harrison Rd
- Emilio Aguinaldo Museum, Happy Glen Loop Rd
- Easter Weaving Room, Easter Rd
- Verve Music Lounge, Montinola
It’s a museum that tells the history of Baguio City and the Igorot culture. It’s main attraction is a more than a hundred year-old mummified remain of an Igorot woman. The facility however is in badly need of support from the government because its roof and ceiling are already leaking rain water. The exhibits, especially the 3D maps on the 2nd floor are getting wet.
Now this museum came as a surprise to all of us. I personally didn’t know that the original Philippine flag is in this place and that it’s already heavily degraded beyond recognition. The curators said that it has only a couple of years more before it totally disintegrates. So, for those who haven’t seen the flag yet, I urge you to go to the Aguinaldo Museum in Baguio quickly before it disappears.
This museum also houses a battle-torn flag used by our Filipino soldiers. You can actually see specks of blood on it. Aside from the wonderful (but very long) war-time stories told by the curators, you can also immerse on Aguinaldo’s life through photos, old relics like the cross where he has sworn office as the first President of the Philippines and also some of her personal items and clothing.
Easter Weaving Room
The Easter Weaving Room is literally the weaving area along Easter Rd in Baguio City. Up front, it’s a shop that sells various Baguio souvenirs but below is a special room for the weavers of Baguio City. This is where the weaving magic happens, from expert women weavers using traditional weaving equipment.
I am not really so interested with weaving but you gotta admit that these folks are really very talented, resourceful and very patient. I wouldn’t last 10 minutes in that room doing all that weaving even if you supplied me a quarter pounder meal every hour.
Verve Music Lounge
Even on a rainy night, Baguio City is still very much alive. But we had to settle for Verve. It’s an old school music lounge that has a stage and a centralize videoke system. It’s kinda like the old Library Comedy Bar and Restaurant in Malate, Manila – but it’s bigger and there are no comedy acts.
Only problem is that you have to wait for the other customers to finish their round of videoke requests before they pass the mic to your table. On the plus side, we’ve got great company.
I went home earlier than the others because it was late and I was too beat.
- Locked In Escape Room, Nevada Square, Loakan Rd
- Bayanihan Ukay Ukay Center, Otek St.
- We R Overrunners Surplus Shop, Yangco St.
- Old Dominican Castle (Diplomat Hotel)
Locked In Escape Room
On our second day in Baguio City, our friends from Azalea brought us to the old Nevada Square where Locked In is located. It’s an Escape Room kind of establishment, kinda like Mystery Manila or Breakout Philippines.
It was my second time to experience this type of activity and my second time losing too. A failed escape but it was kind of an odd experience too. We were suppose to find clues inside our room to open the locks on all the doors, the last door I was able to open by sheer luck – since we’re almost out of time, I just tried some combinations on the lock and then luckily it opened. 🙂
I would’ve passed as a cat burglar for that feat but anyway even with my lucky break, we still ran out of time. The Silent Scream room beat all four of us.
Bayanihan Ukay Ukay Center and We R Overrunners
Our next stop is to do a little bit of shopping – Ukay Ukay at the Bayanihan Center and then some brand new surplus items at We R Overrunners. Ukay Ukay doesn’t really have a strong appeal to me unless it contains some really cool vintage stuff which I didn’t see that day.
At We R Overrunners, I only bought a white long sleeve polo.
At night, we went on a little unscheduled (and unsanctioned) private tour to the old Dominican Castle otherwise known as the haunted Diplomat Hotel. BUT that’s for another story. 🙂
- Slaughterhouse, Magsaysay Ave.
I was kinda hoping to experience blowing out smoke from my mouth when I arrived in Baguio City but for two days it didn’t happen. But when we went out for lunch at Slaughterhouse on the third day that’s when I experienced it. My brief moment of fun.
That took me back to my very first trip to Baguio City, when it’s way colder outside than in the air conditioned buses. When cold crisp air welcomed me as I alight and smoke began to come out from my mouth when I start to breathe out or talk. Really precious moments that I can still vividly recall to this day.
Anyway, we had our lunch at Balajadia Kitchenette. Simple yet satisfying.
Also during our last day in Baguio City, we went to the Public Market to buy some “pasalubong” – I bought a jar of Tantamcos Ube Jam and Mik’asan Choco Flakes and that is it ’cause I like traveling light.
Aside from Baguio Public Market, all of the places we’ve visited four weeks ago was actually new to me – I have never been to those places before, so I guess it’s providentially a trip worth remembering after all even with the very bad weather.
We could’ve also just went to SM Baguio – but who goes to SM when you’re in Baguio. We’ve got lots of SM here in Mega Manila and they all look the same. 🙂
The rain was more intense that Sunday before we left the city because the storm was already looming near Benguet.
Overall, it was a really fun experience. I couldn’t wait to go back to Azalea Residences Baguio again and hopefully next time the weather would be more cooperative.
AZALEA HOTELS & RESIDENCES BAGUIO
Leonard Wood Loop, Baguio City
Baguio Onsite: (074) 424 8714 / 0917 861 1639
Manila Reservation: (02) 484 0080 / (02) 484 0081 / (02) 484 3061 / (0917) 861 1641 / (0919) 994 4140