Paranaque City continues to adapt to the changing times while managing to preserve its rich culture and history. More than just a beautiful coastal city just south of Manila, Paranaque definitely has a lot to offer for the wide-eyed traveler.
The city of Paranaque is among the several cities that make up Metro Manila. Paranaque is bordered by Pasay and Taguig, Muntinlupa and Las Pinas by the south to southeast, and Manila Bay to the west.
The city is known as a major center for trade and business. Barangay Baclaran, for example, is known as one of the busiest markets in the country, ranging from fresh produce and seafood to fashion items, and Duty Free, for imported goods. Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) and majority of the cargo and forwarding companies in the country, are also located in Paranaque. Lately, it has been a hotbed of hotels and leisure entertainment, thanks to the ongoing real estate development near Baclaran and Paranaque/Pasay border.
You can take any international flight going to Manila. NAIA is located in Paranaque.
Although there are cargo ships that dock at the Manila port, travelling to Manila from outside the Philippines is impractical and can be cumbersome.
Same as with the ferry option, an international flight is the most ideal transport mode to travel to Manila, since NAIA is already in Paranaque.
You can travel around Paranaque via rental or car service, jeepneys, or taxis. Majority of the barangays in Paranaque use tricycles, or sidecar-mounted motorcycles, or pedicabs, sidecar-mounted bicycles, to go around shorter distances.
Baclaran Church should be the first attraction off your itinerary. Also known as the Shrine of Our Lady of Perpetual Help, Baclaran Church receives a lot of visitors. It can accommodate a standing capacity of 9,000, and a seating capacity of 3,000. After visiting the church, the famous Baclaran market is just next door.
If you fancy a more quieter scene, check out Cathedral Parish of St. Andrew - the oldest church in Paranaque and among the oldest in the country. Built in 1580 by Spanish Augustinian friars, this Roman Catholic church is the seat of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Paranaque.
You should also visit the Las Pinas-Paranaque Critical Habitat and Eco-tourism Area. The 175-hectare coastal area was declared as critical habitat based on the findings of the country’s Department of Environment and Natural Resources. It is the home of a diverse species of birds, both migratory and residents.
The mangroves and mudflats at the Las Pinas-Paranaque Critical Habitat and Eco-tourism Area is the perfect spot to do bird-watching. Contact Science of Man & the Environment, located at the Coastal Mall to schedule a visit.
You can also try your luck at the popular casinos in the city. Check out Solaire Resort and Casino, a massive complex of lights and gold that also offers live entertainment, hotel accommodations, and top restaurants.
You’d also want to schedule your trip here just in time for the city’s Sambalilo Hat Festival and the Araw ng Parañaque (Paranaque Day) celebrations (February 13). The city celebrates the occasion with multiple cultural traditions such as the komedya, a street play depicting the historic conflict between the Moro-Moro and the Christians which was used by the Spanish to spread Christianity in the Philippines).
If you fancy fresh seafood, enjoy them at DAMPA, which is a collection of stalls that sell and serve fresh seafood. Just make “turo” point to shrimp, mollusks, fish, or any other catch in the sea, and you can have it cooked your way.
You can also travel to Aguirre in BF Homes and go on a food trip. Try the grilled Japanese variety offered in Kantori Yakitori, the wickedly good hotdogs at Wicked Dogs, the french sides at Outre, the brews and amazing brownies at Bucky’s Corner, and Texas Southern barbeque at The Smoking Joint.
You haven’t experienced nightlife in Paranaque if you have not headed out to TIDES Bar and Restaurant in BF Homes. Regulars love this joint for its sizzling hotdogs, chicken tenders, and the amazing crowd it attracts. TIDES also serve different kind of mixed drinks, and bar chow. Just across it is Le Souk, another popular haunt. Grab the Greek Mojos, which is potatoes with nacho side toppings. It has been believed that both TIDES and Le Souk have a common owner, so you can pretty much order food from one joint and have it served across the other joint.
For the sports fan in you, Mulligan’s Irish Gastro Pub, which is also in BF Homes, is perfect for you. You can watch any sports event that you fancy live via its large, widescreen tvs.They have an extensive selection of Wines, Spirits, Lagers, Ales and more. Prices of these beers are surprisingly affordable.
If you wish to live the high life while in the city, check in at hotels within or near the Aseana Business Park. There’s Solaire Resort & Casino, Crown Towers Manila, Hyatt City of Dreams, and Nobu Hotel Red Planet, Oyster Plaza Hotel, and DG Grami are great places to stay for travelers who are on a budget. If you’re looking for a hotel near the airport, check out Hotel Carlston or Nichols Airport Hotel.
To avoid the hassle of hailing cabs, book a car service (via Grab or Uber) instead. They usually indicate the fare amount you need to pay, plus the car drivers are quite courteous too.
You may want to avoid the roads during weekday rush hour (6-9am, 11am-1pm, 5pm-8pm). Schedule your itinerary around these hours so you won’t deal with the mad traffic.
Tipping is generally expected in many services, at 10% off your bill. Some restaurants, however, include this as a charge on your bill.