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The Great Wall of China is referred to in Mandarin as Wanli Changcheng (10,000-Li Long Wall or simply very long wall) BEIJING, CHINA- S...

Thursday, May 9, 2024

Mines View Park: A Nostalgic Glimpse

Ah, Baguio! The cool mountain air, the smell of pine, and a place etched in my childhood memories - Mines View Park. This past weekend, I found myself back in the Summer Capital, eager to revisit this iconic spot. Stepping through the park entrance, a wave of nostalgia washed over me... until I reached the viewing deck.

Where'd the View Go?

Yes, the familiar buzz of vendors and the vibrant energy were there. But something crucial was missing. The view. The once-unobstructed panorama of the Amburayan Valley, a sight that took my breath away as a kid, was now a cluttered mess of rooftops. Houses, sprouted like mushrooms, blocking the once-open vista. My brother's dry wit perfectly summed up the situation: "Roofs View Park."  The once-breathtaking view was now a cluttered mess of rooftops, a stark reminder of how progress can sometimes obscure the very beauty it seeks to showcase.

Don't get me wrong, the mountains are still there, majestic as ever. But where they once dominated the view, they now peek shyly over a sea of corrugated iron. It's a sad testament to progress, I suppose. The charm of the unobstructed view, a key part of the Mines View Park experience, seems to be fading.

This, coupled with the newly implemented environmental fee (a novelty compared to my free visits in the past) and the pay-to-use restrooms, left me feeling a tinge of disappointment. Is this the future of Mines View Park? A crowded marketplace with a glimpse (if you can find it) of the mountains?

Now, I understand progress is inevitable. Cities grow, and Baguio is no exception. But shouldn't there be a way to balance development with preserving the very essence of what makes a place special? The breathtaking view was what drew visitors to Mines View Park in the first place. Without it, is it just another tourist trap?

Despite my initial letdown, there were still some positives. The friendly banter with the vendors, the delicious strawberry taho (a must-try!), and the overall nostalgic atmosphere brought back warm memories.

So, is Mines View Park worth a visit? That depends on what you're looking for. If you crave a taste of the past and a glimpse (literally) of the mountains, then yes. But if you're expecting the same awe-inspiring view from decades ago, you might be disappointed.

This trip to Mines View Park left me with mixed emotions. A yearning for the past, a questioning of progress, and a flicker of hope that somehow, the magic of this place can be preserved. What do you think? Can development and nostalgia coexist? Share your thoughts in the comments below!



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