Baguio City has geared up for the influx of local and foreign during this month’s observance of the famous Panagbenga Festival which is expected to draw 400,000 to 500,000 visitors to the highland “Summer Capital of the Philippines.”
“We’re expecting that this February, we will have 400,000 to 500,000 tourists because many people will go to Baguio City now,” Mayor Benjamin Magalong said in a GMA interview.
To secure the festivities, Magalong said they increased the deployment of police, reserve commands, and public safety office personnel in strategic areas.
The mayor also said they have identified “buffer zones” meant to prevent overcrowding.
The Panagbenga Festival kicked off on Wednesday, with the biggest activities such as the grand parade set on February 25 and 26.
The month-long festival will close on March 5.
The street dance and float parade will be back in the celebration, Magalong said.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, some Panagbenga activities have been canceled since 2020.
The mayor clarified however, that all the highlights of the pre-pandemic Panagbenga would be restored in this year’s celebration. “It would be a reset button. There will be no holds barred.”