The Cordilleras city of Baguio is a green and pleasant place which has been somewhat spoilt by spiralling traffic congestion. There are no commercial flights to Baguio and so the only way to get here is by public bus or hire car.
The routes leading up to Baguio from Clark and Manila are hair-raising roads which twist up the mountainside, and the lack of street lighting or proper surfaces makes it a perilous journey to attempt at night.
Just like Manila, jeepneys ply the various routes within Baguio and its surroundings. These can be difficult to fathom, however, and most tourist prefer to take taxis between their hotel and tourist attractions. The flagdown rates for taxis are Php35 (for the first 500m) and then Php1.50/100m.
Taxis may also be booked for an entire day which costs around Php2,000 for an eight-hour tour of all the major attractions in and around town. Cabs are easy to find all over town, especially at hotels, the Tourist Information Counter within the Victory Liner terminal or on the street.
Walking around the city is enjoyable, with the cooler climate and many parks making it a pleasant place for strolling. The air is a little thin, however, and those unused to the higher altitudes may find themselves out of breath quickly. It is also an extremely hilly town, so getting around Baguio by foot can be tiring.
Getting to Baguio by bus
The cheapest and most practical way to get to Baguio from Manila is by bus, and there are several companies which all ply this route. Journeys tend to take from five to seven hours, probably an hour longer than by car.
Victory Liner (www.victoryliner.com) has hourly buses to Baguio from its Main Monumento Terminal in Caloocan City, Cubao, and Pasay terminals. Buses are comfortable and air-conditioned but larger tourists may struggle in small seats designed for Filipinos. Dagupan Bus (tel:+63 2 929 6123) also has hourly buses to Baguio from its terminal in New York Street, Cubao, Quezon City.
Partas Bus has a service which stops at Clark Airport at 17:00 every day on the way up north. Passengers for Baguio get off at Sison (at around 20:00, Php193) and then cross the road to the restaurant where Victory Liner services have a dinner stop. The Victory Liner to Baguio from Sison costs Php90. Dau Bus Terminal, near Angeles, has a Philippine Rabbit service to Baguio, which costs Php250 and takes four-five hours.
Leaving Baguio by bus
Visitors can get to Sagada and Bontoc (for Banaue) from the Dangwa Terminal (off Magsaysay Ave). Buses leave hourly from 06:00-13:00 and take from six to eight hours. Kabayan is reached by taking Norton Trans buses at 09:00, 11:00 and 12:00 from Slaughter Bus Terminal (Slaughterhouse Road), five hours. Buses for Manila (hourly, six hours), Vigan (every two hours, six-seven hours) and San Fernando (four daily, two hours) all leave from Governor Pack Road Terminal (near Session Road).