After a quick stop over at Camp John Hay (Check : Back To Baguio With Mama : Camp John Hay) , we headed to our next destination, the Botanical Garden. Interestingly, as what the name suggests, it is merely just a huge botanical garden and there’s really nothing much to do but surprisingly, that is actually the site’s strongest point. It is a perfect place to relax and to marvel the luscious green, colorful flowers, the wonderful breeze and fragrance of this garden.
Botanical Garden, much like the Burnham Park is another popular spots in Baguio and a place that should never be missed. To top it all, the place is accessible for general public and it’s for free! Botanical Garden by the way is a Goverment-owned land and with so many commercial buildings on rise, it is nice that they still reserve this huge piece of land where different plants and flowers grow.According to history, Botanical Garden was once a zoo and was once named as Botanical and Zoological Garden. The Garden had so many names through the years. It was once named as Igorot Village because of the numerous Igorot statues and huts stood in this place. We were actually warmly welcomed by Igorot ladies when we arrived there. They are so friendly and they are even willing to take photos with us. They will ask for a small fee (Php10/head) but that’s pretty much okay… oh and they are actually not camera-shy and in fact, they know how to pose better than us haha.Botanical Garden is also known as Centennial Garden in celebration of 100 years of the Summer Capital of the Philippines. Much like Burnham Park, this place are often very crowded. Baguio Botanical Garden is seemingly divided into many parts. Each part or portion of the garden follows a certain theme. You will also spot different sculptures and installation in the place.
One of the most interesting things you can do in Botanical Garden in Bagiuo is to rent an Igorot Costume and equip yourself with any props you like and take photos with their Igorot hut. Much like those in Mines View, Wright Park and Burnham, the complete Igorot Costume can be rented for Php20. You can take as many shots as you can and you can choose among different props as well. Of course, my mom and I both grabbed the chance to wear those colorful Igorot costumes. I think a Baguio trip will not be completed without trying those!My mom is nailing it! hahaThe place will be called Botanical Garden for no reason! The garden is adorned with so many breeds of ornamental plants. Some of which is quite new to me and never seen them in the city I grew up with.
A pair on Swan boats (which are commonly found in Burnham Parks) have become an attraction here in Botanical Garden
A custom-built bridge over a koi fish pondA statue of an IgorotDifferent pathways surrounded by luscious green plants and colorful flowers!While exploring the garden, our feet took us in this Chinese-inspired garden. This one is called as “Friendship Pavilion” which commemorates the sister city relationship of Baguio City and Hangzhou City of China. The building and the marker were both built in 1982.
Not too far from the Friendship Pavilion is another themed park and this time, it is inspired from Korean ~ the Taebaek Park!
You will be welcomed here with two totem poles and a Korean inspired hut.
A small replica of the Golden Gate BridgeA huge statue of Igorot in Botanical Garden. The place is really huge and it could be a very tiring tour so make sure you arm yourself with a bottle of water!Unlike in Camp John Hay, we were able to utilize our time very well in this garden. We were given time that is good enough to explore the huge garden.
Things You Should Know Before Going To Botanical Garden
►There is NO Entrance Fee to Botanical Garden
►The Igorots are more than willing to take Pictures with you but they charge Php10 per head
►Igorot Costumes can be rented for Php20 (no minimum time required)
►There are publicly accessible rest rooms but they will ask you Php5 (If you will only urinate) and Php 10 (If you want to do your business haha)
►Pets are allowed in Botanical Garden
►It is Baguio but it could be very hot too so wear clothes that is comfortable enough and footwear that are light enough to be carried
►The place is not Wheelchair-friendly
►Souvenirs and foods are being sold inside the Garden
How to Get to Botanical Garden
►Going to Baguio has never a hassle anymore. There are so many transit buses in the Metro that will take you directly to Baguio (Victory Liner and Genesis buses are two of the common bus companies that offers buses bound to the Summer capital of the Philippines. It is going to be 5-7 hours long travel and a one way ride may cost you up to Php450 or above. All places in Baguio can now be reached via jeepney or tricycle.
►Botanical Garden is near the Baguio Plaza along with other popular destinations like Mines View or the PMA. Just ride a jeepney bound to such places and just ask the driver to drop you off to any of these spots
Where to stay in Baguio
► There are many places to stay while in Baguio. There are many transient houses, budget hotels and even a bedspace. This will depend on your budget but based on my own experiences, it is really ideal to book your stay ahead. I got most of bookings at TravelBookPH (due to the great discounts I usually get from them). You can check this List of Hotels In Baguio for your budget-friendly guide!
After the Botanical Garden, our tour coordinator took us to what she believed the Baguio Cathedral. I think she failed to do her research because we were actually taken to Saint Joseph Parish. Everyone was misinformed by that and I want to share you what happened in my next Back to Baguio Entry.
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You might also want to check my previous Baguio-related Entries below
►Panagbenga Festival Grand Float Parade 2016
►Wright Park And The Mansion
►Mines View Park
►Cordillera World Museum
►Our Lady of Lourdes Grotto
►Things To Buy When Visiting Baguio
►Things To Consider and To Expect Before Going to 2017 Panagbenga Flower Festival
►Side Trips in Baguio During the Panagbenga Flower Festival