Timothy Tye's Travel Encyclopedia
Valenzuela City, Philippines

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Valenzuela City is one of the component cities of Metro Manila. It is located on the northern part of the metropolis. It is bordered by Meycauayan City to the north, Quezon City to the southeast, Caloocan City to the south, Malabon City to the southwest and Obando to the west.

Valenzuela City attained city status in 1998. It covers 44.59 sq km and has a population of 590,000 (2011 estimate). It is one of the ten most populous cities in the Philippines.

Valenzuela City was named after Dr Pío Valenzuela, a Filipino doctor and nationalist who was instrumental in starting the Philippine Revolution against Spanish colonial rule. The name Valenzuela itself means "Little Valencia", in reference to the city and region of Valencia in Spain.

Valenzuela City was originally called Polo, which is derived from the Tagalog word pulô meaning "island" (similar to "pulau" in Malay). This is because the area was thought to be an island. Today the name Polo is used to refer to one of the barangay (neighborhood) within Valenzuela City, incidentally the birthplace of Dr Valenzuela.

How to go to Valenzuela City

You can reach Valenzuela City from downtown Manila by taking the North Luzon Expressway

Places of Interest in Valenzuela City

  1. Arkong Bato
    The Stone Arch built by the Americans in 1910 used to mark the boundary between Rizal Province and Bulacan Province.
  2. Bell Tower of San Diego de Alcala Church
    The remnants of a church built in 1632 through forced labor of the local people.
  3. Museo Valenzuela
    The home of Dr Pío Valenzuela, now turned into a local museum providing details of the freedom movement against Spain.
  4. National Shrine of Our Lady of Fatima
    Shrine housing one of the fifty wooden images of Our Lady of Fatima, which was blessed by Pope Paul VI in 1967, on the golden jubilee of the Marian apparition in Fátima, Portugal. The image intended for the Philippines was unclaimed, and ended up in New Jersey, until it was eventually brought back to the Philippines by the late Archbishop of Manila, Jaime Cardinal Sin in 1984.
  5. SM Center Valenzuela
    A big shopping mall covering an area of 25,000 sq m and floor space of 61,460 sq m. Anchor tenant is SM Hypermarket. Other outlets at the mall includes National Bookstore, Quantum Amusement and Watsons, among others.

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