Nicknamed the “Strawberry Fields of the Philippines”, La Trinidad nestles in the province of Benguet just to the north of Baguio City. It serves as the gateway to the Cordillera mountains and is renowned for both its strawberry farms and rose gardens which supply flowers across Luzon Island.
La Trinidad lies in a picturesque valley crisscrossed by rivers, creeks and springs which provide natural irrigation for its extensive strawberry fields. It’s the only place in the Philippines to produce strawberries on a commercial scale, and domestic tourists flock to tour the farms and pick strawberries fresh from the fields as a pasalubong gift for those back home. La Trinidad holds the Guinness World Record for having baked the world’s largest strawberry shortcake back in March 2004 and celebrates this humble fruit each year during a month-long festival of cultural programs, parades and fairs. The Rose Gardens in Bahong are another drawcard in La Trinidad, with farm tours and flower harvesting both popular activities, while Lily of the Valley in Puguis is a great place to learn about the principles of organic farming and participate in a homestay initiative. Also of note is the distinct Chinese architecture of Bell Church’s Taoist temple in nearby Balili where monks live according to ancient Tao principles.
The Baguio-La Trinidad-Bontoc Road is the main thoroughfare through the town with both vans and jeepneys stopping here and connecting the town with Baguio City to the south. La Trinidad itself is very compact and easy to explore on foot although a private vehicle is best for visiting the surrounding farms and gardens.
The valley where La Trinidad is situated was originally named Benguet and home to a community of Ibaloi people before Spanish explorer Guillermo Galvey arrived in 1829 and renamed it in honour of his wife. In 1899 it was made the capital of Benguet province and established as one of its 19 townships under American rule. The Japanese occupied the town during much of World War II before it was liberated by the Philippine Commonwealth Army and the United States Armed Forces in May 1945.