Baguio City In A Day: Top 10 Things To Do And See

Baguio City In A Day: Top 10 Things To Do And See

Imagine if you only had a day to explore Baguio City, the Summer Capital of the Philippines. What should you do, where should you go? No need to fret because here is a guide to 10 things you can do and see in Baguio. The activities and places we recommend here embody the essence of this city up in the mountains, where the cool breeze makes you forget your worries even for just a while.

1. Get your Baguio art fix part 1: visit Tam-Awan village - an artist "village"

Sunset In Baguio City
Source: Photo by user Bro. Jeffrey Pioq... used under CC BY 2.0

Tam-Awan Village is an attraction in Baguio City that is modeled after a small village in the Cordilleras. Native huts from the different provinces in the region were brought here and set up in different areas on this hillside. Once you enter the village, stairs and trails will lead you to the huts. Over 9 native huts were relocated here, and they serve as a gallery-cafe, a souvenir shop and artist studios for artists in residence. Some huts are available for lodging or special events. After a quick tour around the village, one can have their sketch done by one of the artists in residence, or sit down and have local brewed coffee and snacks in the cafe.

Tam-Awan Village

Address: Long Long Benguet Road, Pinsao Proper, Baguio City

Price: from 1 USD for adults, .50 USD for children, and .25 USD for senior citizens

Opening Hours: 9am - 6pm. Daily

Duration: around 3 hours required.

Access: Via taxi - most taxi drivers are familiar with this attraction.

Contact: +63 74 4462949

Near by Food: The village has a gallery-cafe.

Website: Tam-Awan Village

2. Get your art fix part 2: visit Bencab Museum

Bencab Museum in Benguet, Philippines
Source: Photo by user Boranzohn used under CC0

Located about 8 km (4 mi) from the city center along Asin Road, this museum was established by Philippine National Artist Ben Cabrera, or Bencab for short. It is a perfect blend of architecture and landscaping, with the main building housing several art galleries and a cafe, and an open area with a koi pond, as well as an eco-trail. Art-lovers will typically spend more than 2 hours here but if you are in a hurry, we recommend focusing on the galleries that feature Cordilleran arts and crafts, from sculptures to daily implements. This is Bencab’s personal collection of Cordilleran art that he has collected over the years in his travels around the region. Cafe Sabel is also a great place to sit down and have a snack.

Bencab Museum

Address: Kilometer 8, Tadiangan, Tuba, Benguet

Price: from 2.5 USD for adults, 2 USD for students with IDs, 1.5 USD for senior citizens and persons with disabilities; same prices for eco-trail tours.

Opening Hours: 9am - 6pm. Tuesdays to Sundays. Closed on Mondays, Christmas Day and New Years Day.

Duration: around 3 hours required.

Access: Via taxi - most taxi drivers are familiar with this attraction

Contact: +6374 442 7165

Near by Food: Cafe Sabel, inside the museum

Website: Bencab Museum

3. Get your art fix 3: visit Pasakalye Art Festival

Source: Pxfuel

Photo is only for illustrative purposes

Pasakalye Art Festival is a weekly art exhibit organized by Bookends Baguio, a local bookstore and a group of Baguio artists. On the street where the bookstore is located in T. Claudio, Baguio City, artists display their artwork from sketches and paintings to mixed media and sculptures and offer them for sale. It happens every weekend and visitors can mingle with the artists and have their sketch done. Painting sessions for kids are also organized. While you are there, check out the used books on sale at Bookends. You just may find a book you have long been looking for.

Pasakalye Art Festival

Address: T. Claudio St., Baguio City

Price: no admission required, but purchasing artworks or books is welcome

Opening Hours: 9am - 6pm. Saturdays and Sundays

Duration: around 1 hour required.

Access: Via taxi

4. Enjoy the cool breeze: visit Burnham Park

Burnham Park was named after Daniel Burnham, the American architect who helped lay down the plans for the city of Baguio. The park is located in the city center, with one side along Harrison Road, another along Kisad Road, and along Legarda Road. Since this 32 hectare park may be too big for only one hour of exploring, we suggest some signature park activities. One is taking a boat ride on Burnham Lake located in the middle of the park. Another is renting a bike for riding along the park’s bike lanes. If you are too tired, you can always sit down and enjoy the cool breeze - we suggest at the Rose Garden.

Burnham Park

Address: Legarda-Kisad-Harrison Road, Baguio City

Price: no admission fee, but boat rides and bikes require an hourly rental fee

Opening Hours: Open 24 hours, everyday.

Duration: around 2 hours required.

5. Soak in some history: visit Camp John Hay

The Bell House
Source: Photo by user Rhonaramos used under CC BY-SA 3.0

Camp John Hay used to be the military headquarters of the Commanding General of the Philippines when it was still under US colonial rule. The Bell House found inside the campy, is named after American General J. Franklin Bell, as this was his vacation quarters during the humid summer months of April and May. If you only have an hour to spend inside John Hay, the Bell House is worth the visit. There’s also a lovely outdoor amphitheater at the back of the house. The house also has old photos and memorabilia from the US colonial era.

Bell House

Address: Camp John Hay, Baguio City

Price: from 1.25 USD for adults and non-residents of Baguio; less than 1 USD for students and senior citizens with IDs

Opening Hours: 9am - 5pm. Daily.

Duration: around 1 hour

Access: Via taxi

Near by Food: There are several restaurants at the Ayala TechnoHub area.

6. Quiet time: visit The Baguio Cathedral

Baguio Cathedral
Source: Photo by user Ranieljose used under PUBLIC DOMAIN

There are daily masses almost every hour at the Our Lady of Atonement Cathedral, more popularly known as Baguio Cathedral. Located on Mount Mary hill, it gives a good vantage point of the city. If you are not spiritual or religious, you can still visit the church and appreciate its neo-Gothic style of architecture. Simply said, it is one of the most majestic structures in the city. The church’s inside decoration is also very ornate and typical of big Catholic cathedrals.

Baguio Cathedral

Address: Mount Mary, Cathedral Loop, Baguio City

Price: no admission fee required

Opening Hours: 6am, until the end of last mass. Daily.

Duration: around 1 hour required

Access: Via taxi

Contact: +674 304 4061

Near by Food: There are many restaurants along Session Road.

7. Eat local food: try Cafe by the Ruins

Stopover Cafe by the Ruins @ Baguio!
Source: Photo by Flickr user dahon used under CC BY-ND 2.0

Cafe by the Ruins has two branches in the city: one on Shuntug Street, near Baguio City Hall and another along Upper Session Road. Both are easily accessible via taxi. The restaurant is a local food advocate, so their menu changes according to what is available in the markets. Their must-try dishes are the Pinikpikan, a Cordilleran chicken soup, and Bagnet, a pork dish. If you are thinking something light, their salads are also a must-try and you will be sure they use the freshest ingredients. Be sure to try their homemade breads such as the Camote (Sweet Potato) bread, the Pesto bread and the Kalabasa (Squash) bread. Pair these breads with a variety of spreads.

Cafe by The Ruins

Address: 25 Chuntug Street, Baguio City.

Opening Hours: 7am - 9pm. Daily.

Duration: around 2 hours required.

Access: Via taxi

Contact: +6374 442 4010

Website: Cafe by The Ruins Facebook page

8. Shop where the locals shop: visit the Baguio City Public Market

Baguio downtown - Session Road with shops (Baguio, Benguet)
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Patrick Roque used under CC BY-SA 4.0

A visit to Baguio is never complete until you go souvenir shopping at the Baguio City Public Market. Stalls in the market offer the same kind of merchandise, from brooms, strawberry jam or preserves, and fresh Baguio vegetables. If you want a unique souvenir, try Benguet coffee beans at Garcia’s Coffee, located past the rice section of the market. You can buy a kilo for only PhP 210, much lower than the price of good coffee beans in Manila. Two hours will be more than enough to do your shopping.

Baguio City Public Market

Address: Magsaysay Avenue, Baguio City

Opening Hours: 6am - 6pm. Daily.

Duration: around 1 hour required.

Access: Via taxi or on foot from Session Road.

9. Shop where the locals shop: visit the Baguio Night Market

Ukay ukay galore
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Keith Bacongco used under CC BY 2.0

Photo is only for illustrative purposes

Baguio is known for its vintage shops where one can buy pre-loved clothes, shoes, and other accessories. While there may be a lot of these shops in Bayanihan near Burnham or in Skyworld along Session, the best place for bargain vintage buys is said to be the Baguio Night Market. Starting at 9pm, a portion of Harrison Road from the main intersection where the pedestrian overpass is, down to the corner of Baguio Patriotic School, is closed off to traffic. This is where the night market vendors set up their stalls. Selections range from clothes, shoes and accessories and knick-knacks. If you are hungry, there are also street food stalls in the market.

Baguio Night Market

Address: Harrison Road, Baguio City

Opening Hours: 9pm - 12am. Daily.

Duration: around 2 hours required.

Access: Via taxi

10. Shop for unique gifts: visit Easter Weaving Room

Editor's Note: There's no photo available at the time of writing

The main products of the Easter Weaving Room are loom woven fabrics, that come in many color combinations and materials. As weaving is unique among Cordillerans, the different weaving styles of each Cordilleran group are also represented. Traditional colors of each group are used, but the weaving room also has woven fabric that makes use of more modern, non-traditional color combinations. The handwoven fabrics are sold by meter, ranging from PHP 352 (7.5 USD) per meter for the common ikat designs to PHP 780 (16 USD) per meter for rare designs such as those from Abra. These fabrics are perfect for dresses or formal wear.

Easter Weaving Room

Address: No. 2, Easter Rd, Guisad, Baguio City

Opening Hours: 8am - 5pm. Mondays to Saturdays.

Duration: around 2 hours required.

Contact: +6374 442 4972

Website: Easter Weaving Room

Travel tips

Sunset In Baguio City
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Bro. Jeffrey Pioq... used under CC BY 2.0

Bus travel is the most reliable form of transport to this northern city. You can take a Victory Liner bus, from Metro Manila (Cubao or Pasay stations) which have hourly trips, round the clock. Regular air-conditioned buses cost PhP 450 per person per trip and will take 6 to 7 hours, depending on the weather, the road conditions and the traffic. If you want a faster and more comfortable ride, take the non-stop De Luxe bus trips at PhP 750, which have scheduled trips in the mid-morning, mid-afternoon or late evening every day. If you take the De Luxe trip from Cubao at 12:10am, you will arrive in Baguio at 4 or 4:30am. Rely on our list of must-see places for a complete Baguio experience.

Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.

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I am a freelance writer living in the summer capital of the Philippines, Baguio City. I am passionate about writing and living and anything in between.

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