Welcome to Baguio!
In the summer months of March, April
and May, Baguio lives up to its title as the "Summer Capital
of the Philippines" when thousands of visitors from the lowlands
and Manila take their annual exodus to the city to cool off. Casual
clothing is recommended worn with jackets or sweaters especially
in the late afternoons or evenings.
Baguio City, approximately 250 kilometers north
of Manila, is situated in the Province of Benguet. The area of
the city is 49 square kilometers enclosed in a perimeter of 30.6
Baguio City as the Summer Capital of the Philippines,
is the most frequented destinations in Northern Luzon by local
and foreign tourists alike.
There are two great valleys found in the south
and north of the city. The more famous Guisad-Lucban Valley has
an elevation that ranges from 1,300 to 1,400 meters and is centrally
located towards the north. The southern valley is composed of
long and narrow vales surrounded by low hills and transected by
a network of hills. Some of the more important vales are Camp
7, Loakan, Bakekeng and Crystal Cave. These valleys are arables
as they are rich with alluvial deposits.
Baguio Hotels and
John Hay Manor
Microtel Inn & Suites
Summer Place Hotel Baguio
Baguio is the gateway to the wonders
of Northern Luzon. The calm beaches of La Union; the fabled Hundred
Islands of Pangasinan; the world famous Banaue Rice Terraces in
Ifugao; the ancient churches, Spanish influenced houses, historical
and cultural relics of Ilocos Sur and Ilocos Norte, the Kabayan
mummy caves of benguet; and the distinct culture and colorful
traditions of the tribes of Benguet, Mountain Province, Ifugao,
Kalinga, Apayao and Abra.
1. Marker of the Philippine Commission's
First Session in Baguio - This is the site of the building
where the members of the Philippine Commission met from April
22 to June 11, 1904 and officially initiated the use of Baguio
as the Philippine Summer Capital.
The Commission was composed of Governor General
Luke Wright, president, and Commissioners Henry Ide, Den C. Worcester,
T. Padre Tavera, benito Legarda, Jose de Luzuriaga, James Smith
and Cameron Forbes.
To celebrate the 75th Anniversary of Baguio
a project was done to locate, clean and spruce up all historical
markers. So the marker was fenced off and signboards were made.
2. Kennon Road and its builder
- Named after Col. Lyman W. Kennon who was the final builder of
the famous benguet road, with the help of the industrious Cordilleras
and foreign workers.
Kennon road is the shortest and the most scenic
highway linking Baguio and the lowlands. The Lion's head can be
found along the way.
Final construction of this road was finished
in 1903. Col. L. Kennon first ascended to Baguio in 1905.
Of the original workers, the Igorots and Japanese
were admired for their trustworthiness and willingness to work.
Kennon was closed to traffic after the July
16, 1990 earthquake. It is now open to light vehicles.
3. Diplomat Hotel on Dominican Hill
- In May 1911, the councils of the Province of the Dominican
Order voted to construct a vacation house in Baguio on a 17 hectare
property they had acquired when the American authorities were
encouraging people to come here. Actual work started in 1913 under
Fr. Roque Ruano and the building was inaugurated on May 23, 1915.
To take advantage of the tax exemptions a school called Collegio
del Santissimo Rosario was opened in June 1915 but due to the
very small enrollment the school closed in 1917, reverting the
building to the original vacation house sanitarium.
During WWII it was first occupied by refugees.
Later the Japanese Army Liberation Forces had to bomb out the
refugees from the buildings. The five direct hits left very extensive
damage and for a time it was left unrepaired. Reconstruction was
started in 1947 and completed in 1948 with most of its pre-war
grandeur and beauty restored.
In 1973, Diplomats Hotels, Inc. acquired ownership,
remodeled the interior into a 33 bedroom hotel with modern facilities,
but retained the unique and distinct personality of the Dominican
Hill. In the 80's the hotel ceased operations due to the death
of one of its majority stockholders. Plans are underway to develop
this historical religious landmark into a tourist resort.
4. Philippine Military Academy
- The Philippine Commission promulgated Act No. 175 which became
the basis for the creation of the Philippine Constabulary in August
8, 1905. The school for the officers of the constabulary was first
located in Sta. Lucia Barracks in Manila. Later in 1908, it was
relocated in Baguio on the site known as Constabulary Hill later
renamed Camp Henry T. Allen, in honor of the first chief of the
With the passage of the Jones Law, the school
was later changed to "Academy for officers of the Philippine
Constabulary" with a two-year curriculum. In 1908, the course
was raised to collegiate level and later lenghtened to three years
with class 1938 as having the lease graduates of that course.
When the commonwealth government was established
in 1935, the Philippine Military Academy was created in place
of the Philippine Constabulary Academy. Under the National Defense
Act, the PMA was authorized to maintain a cadet strength of 350.
Because of increased population, the academy transferred to Teachers
Camp in June 1936 where it remained until WWII broke out.
After the war the PMA headquarters was temporarily
relocated at Camp Murphy and later at Alabang, while Camp Allen
was being rehabilitated. In April 1947 the PMA was back to its
original home in Camp Allen.
Again they had to transfer to Loakan because
of overcrowding. Since May 1950 the Philippine Military Academy
has found its permanent home at Fort del Pilar, Loakan, Baguio
5. The Mansion - This imposing
and majestic Baguio mansion house has a long list of Filipino
presidents and American governor-generals. It has elegantly structured
building and guesthouse. It's gate is patterned after that of
London's Buckingham Palace. The Mansion has also been the site
of several international conferences and a working office of the
President of the Philippines during his visits to the City.
6. Camp John Hay - This former
American recreational facility is currently undergoing development
as a world class resort.
7. Teachers Camp - It was through
the vacation normal school which began in Teacher's Camp 1908,
that not only teachers from all over the islands were able to
have a respite and some more time for studies, but the city became
In a letter to the Secretary of Public Instruction,
Governor William Pack outlines his plan to set up a camp in Baguio
where teachers can be accommodated. The plan was approved on January
8, 1908 and the camp was opened on April 6, 1908.
For a start, four assembly tents were put up
for kitchen, dining and storage purposes and two other large tents
were set aside for class purposes. Later on, the "KURSAAK"
was constructed in 1909 as a permanent structure and took over
the functions of the mess tent, aside from being the social center
for assemblies. The next year, other buildings were added, the
road traversing the vast hectarage leveled and the athletic field
out in its hollow.
In 1912, Benitez Hall , Ladies Hall, the Secretary's
Cottage, the Under-Secretary's Cottage the Director and the Assistant's
Cottages were built. Several more appropriations were passed to
construct the Teacher's Hall, the Tavera Hall and the White Hall
in 1927. In 1937, General Luna Hall was built by the Philippine
It now caters to conferences, meetings seminars
and social functions sponsored by the government sector.