Roses and Strawberries at La Trinidad, Benguet

by • March 18, 2016 • Off the Beaten PathComments (0)1306

A first-class municipality in the Philippines, La Trinidad is the capital of Benguet Province. It is also referred to as the country’s “Rose Capital” as well as “Strawberry Capital” — thanks to the municipality’s agricultural economy. In fact, vegetable traders and wholesalers from other regions flock to the municipality’s trading posts. Adding to the bountiful produce of the lands is the Benguet State University where research and development on agriculture is made.

Agriculture in La Trinidad also attracts many tourists especially with the fact that the municipality is near the popular summer destination, Baguio. The strawberry fields are the most visited places in the municipality. Admission is free in the fields but if you decided to engage in strawberry picking, it’ll be at least PHP300. The rose gardens are also famous destinations.

Strawberry Harvest (La Trinidad, Benguet) Photo by: Shubert Ciencia of Flickr.com/CC

Strawberry Harvest (La Trinidad, Benguet) Photo by: Shubert Ciencia of Flickr.com/CC

The Annual Strawberry Festival

If you’re planning to visit La Trinidad, make sure you’ll be in the municipality on March 18 for the Strawberry Festival! You may already know by now that when it comes to feasts in the Philippines, it will be totally joyous and exciting. In the festival of 2004, the municipality bagged the largest strawberry shortcake for the Guinness Book of World Records. In the 2015 festival, everyone enjoyed the 6,000 slices of cake made from fresh strawberries. The next festival may be your chance to enjoy delicious strawberry products for free!

But of course, La Trinidad has more to offer than cut flowers and strawberries, too.

Strawberries (La Trinidad, Benguet) Photo by: Shubert Ciencia of Flickr.com/CC

Strawberries (La Trinidad, Benguet) Photo by: Shubert Ciencia of Flickr.com/CC

Natural and Man-Made Attractions

La Trinidad consists of urban and rural barangays, and thus, you get to enjoy a bit of both worlds. Here are some attractions to check:

  • Mt. Jumbo. Also known as Mt. Jhangbow or Yangbaw, the mountain is ideal for hiking where at the end of it all, you can get to enjoy a magnificent view of La Trinidad Valley. The place isn’t developed, too, so you won’t see any tourist facilities and even houses in the area.
  • Mt. Kalugong. It’s a smaller mountain than Mt. Jumbo but it still overlooks the valley. The place is developed for tourism and you can see picnic tables, house rentals and even tree swings. It’s a good destination to be with your family or friends when you want to get away from the busy phase in the municipality.
  • Longlong Communal Forest. Located in Puguis, the area is a tree-laden stretch that also functions as a watershed. Hiking and picnics are popular activities here. You can also see the valley on the viewing deck.
  • Lamtang. Also located in Puguis, this is the escape route of former Philippine President Sergio Osmena and his party during the World War II to Kapangan and to La Union.
  • Benguet Museum. This provincial museum houses a variety of artifacts that reveal the life of indigenous settlers of Benguet. Admission is free and the establishment is open on weekdays from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM.
  • The Tawang Stone Church. Visit Barangay Tawang and endure a short hike away from the highway to explore a church made from the rocks and stones that are just located in the vicinity. It’s above a mountain slope and may require a bit of hiking on your part.
Hiking at Benguet Photo by: ArthurNielsen/CC

Hiking at Benguet Photo by: ArthurNielsen/CC

How to Get to La Trinidad

Wherever you are in the Philippines, find your way to Baguio City. From this Benguet’s former capital, it’s already easy to visit La Trinidad. Just ride any of the jeepneys passing through the Kilometer 6 highway that go to the municipality. You can also find your ride in the terminal area. Hailing a taxi to drive you through La Trinidad is also possible but much more expensive than riding public jeepneys.

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