[amidst the scent of pine trees & taste of strawberries: DAY 2]

we had an early start for the day. after taking quick showers, we made our way to DULCINEA to eat breakfast. the main dining area was already filled with guests so we just took the adjacent function room/dining area.  i didn't take pictures of  our meals because my hubby was hurrying us up since we will be strawberry-picking in la trinidad. holding our ever reliable baguio map, my hubby took a quick review of the roads & off we went.

these sights were what greeted us as we parked by the roadside.

strawberry fields welcome sign

the "ubiquitous" strawberry
"manangs" selling fruits

a strawberry picker

vast strawberry farms

rows upon rows of veggies

our "encounters" with the strawberries
got them on the palm of my hand

"manang" chooses them for a customer

the ripe & unripe all bundled-up
jill holds one

luscious strawberries - who could resist them?

up close & personal

my strawberry "taho"


ice cream scooper 

strawberry ice cream, no less

first scoop - jill said the ice cream was yummy

we also looked at the souvenir shops. nothing new. typical merchandise being sold around the city. 

by the way, my hubby complained that the prices of the veggies he was trying to buy here did not come at all cheap. "bakit pa pupunta sa  source if pang-turista o retail pa rin ang presyo?" (why buy at the source if the prices are still retail, not wholesale?)

handcrafted wood ware

from la trinidad, we looked for a place to take our lunch. i suggested THE HILLSTATION at CASA VALLEJO, a boutique hotel-restaurant-bookstore-spa situated along  upper session road luneta drive.


entry to the dining area
menu stand

holiday-decked dining area
jill poring over the menu
black & white photo wall

a view of the outside from a
poinsettia-topped table

what we ate 


fish fillet with 5-spice chili

lechon kawali with laing sa gata

spanish callos

after picking the tab, my daughters & i went to see the bookshop (MT. CLOUD)

mural outside the bookshop

stairs leading to NOTH HAVEN SPA
unfortunately, no photos were taken of the spa. but this i can say, the lavender scent that wafted in the lobby was heavenly...

from casa vallejo, we went straight to mines view park to buy my mom's baskets.


scenes taken at the flea market

t-shirts, bags, shawls & what-have-yous

chopping board, mortar & pestle,  placemats

thinking of what to buy

even spongebob was here
almost-real frogs 

local woven blankets

kirsten & her "frog prince"

keychains galore
through the mirror

next stop was the GOOD SHEPHERD CONVENT to buy those delectable UBE JAMS.

the BELEN on display at the veranda area

people images 

the KOREAN hand sign

father & son

captured photo of a lensman

in cartoon character headgears

kid in boots

one of the world's most expensive coffee

brewed coffee

footprints on the pavement 

from the convent, we went to the MARYKNOLL ECOLOGICAL SANCTUARY, Baguio's secret garden. it's a place where visitors are taken on a journey to the evolution of the universe in 14 stations. it cost us php 30.00/head. we first toured the center.

entrance sign

corridor leading to the dormitory & cafe

sleeping quarters

a peek into one of the bedrooms

the CAFE

while patiently waiting for daddy

"batibot" chairs

steps leading to the sanctuary

not so well-maintained garden

looking for the right directions (we got lost, actually)

entering one of the caves

we weren't able to complete all the stations. the trek was too arduous, pathways too steep.  i think it would have been a lot better if a tour guide was with us. the center had none & the pamphlet given to us didn't help at all.  it got us all disoriented. 

we decided to return to cjh & found ourselves in the new ayala-baguio techno hub. the layout was similar to bonifacio high street. 

after a quick merienda stop at the 7-11 store, we hurried back to the hotel to get ready for dinner.

before leaving, i captured this breathtaking sunset moment from our bedroom window...

just a stone's throw away was WOOD NYMPH, the KOREAN restaurant where we dined. 

the happy KOREAN foodies

who ate these

twice-served banchan

spicy seafood soup

grilled beef  ribs

what better way to end DAY 2 but  a hearty KOREAN dinner. if ever we find ourselves in the city of pines again, we'll definitely go back to WOOD NYMPH. 2 thumbs-up for the ambience, food, as well as the ample serving sizes. everything's worth your money.

after an hour, it's off to nearby CHALET to retire for the night.

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