city of the Philippines in Metro Manila

Quezon City (Tagalog: Lungsod Quezon) is the largest city in the Philippines and is one of the constituent cities of Metro Manila. Commonly called QC or Kyusi, it has a population of 2.96 million people. It has become the hub of information technology and its entertainment industry in the Philippines. The city was named after former Philippine president Manuel Luis Quezon y Molina. Quezon City was the country's capital from 1946 until 1972, when the seat of government was returned to neighboring Manila. Quezon City consists of five districts.

High rise buildings in Eastwood City, Quezon City

Districts edit

Quezon City is a city of contrasts, mixing old and new, rich and poor, and traditional and modern. Administratively, the city is divided into 127 barangays that are generally used in addresses and for official purposes; in addition, there are also a number of traditional areas, like Cubao, Diliman, New Manila, etc., that have since been subdivided but are still commonly used in addresses and when giving directions. For the purposes of this guide, these can be broadly grouped into seven districts.

Map of Quezon City
The commercial heart of the city, centered on the sprawling Araneta City (formerly Araneta Center), with its many malls and condominiums. This area is considered the modern "downtown" of Quezon City, and is also a major transport hub, with various options available to the rest of Metro Manila and even to other parts of the Philippines.
  Diliman and Katipunan (Commonwealth, Diliman, Katipunan Avenue)
This area is home to a very large transient student population, being home to the University of the Philippines and Ateneo de Manila University campuses, as well as several other educational institutions. Between the two universities is Maginhawa Street, a food district popular with students of both universities.
  Triangle and Scout Areas
The bustling heart of Quezon City, filled with people all day and all night. Major city and national government offices are clustered around the Quezon Memorial Circle, while the restaurants, bars and nightclubs along Tomas Morato Avenue are among the best Metro Manila has to offer, both to locals and tourists alike.
  Commonwealth and Fairview
Primarily residential, this area hosts the La Mesa Watershed Reservation, Metro Manila's only remaining natural rainforest and the primary source of the city's drinking water. Shopping malls are primarily clustered in the northern part of Fairview, while to the south along Commonweath Avenue are sights as varied as the Batasang Pambansa, various government offices, the central temple of the Iglesia ni Cristo and even the city's old landfill, Payatas.
  Northwestern Quezon City (Balintawak, Novaliches, Project 8, Project 9)
The birthplace of the Philippine Revolution, today it is a busy commercial district, with Balintawak's bustling public market, the up-and-coming Cloverleaf mixed-use development nearby, and the many restaurants along Congressional Avenue.
  Southeast Quezon City
Largely residential, this area is mostly known for hosting the headquarters of the Philippine National Police and the Armed Forces of the Philippines, where the People Power Revolution took place nearby in 1986. To the east is Eastwood City, a large mixed-use development popular with the upper classes.
  Western Quezon City
On the La Loma area are its famous row of Filipino restaurants and lechon stores. Santa Mesa Heights is a mid-class area, with two major Roman Catholic shrines and prestigious Catholic schools. Near the boundary with Manila and San Juan lies the supposedly haunted location of Balete Drive, the car part stalls and Chinatown area along Banaue Street, and the row of funeral homes along Araneta Avenue. At the center of New Manila are lofty condominiums and growing nightlife.

Understand edit

Quezon City was created to become the future capital of the Philippines. It houses various government agencies whose buildings were constructed under the original masterplan laid out by the American architect and urban planner William Parsons. Quezon City is the largest city in terms of population, resulting from its gradual expansion and rural-urban migration; the 2015 census gives a population of over 2.9 million. The city is home to every person from all walks of life, from the richest to the poorest, and the contrasts are almost ubiquitous to this city.

Quezon City has no single place considered the city center; it is a multipolar city, with central business districts and commercial centers scattered at different points. Quezon City sprawls out in almost every direction, and this is manifested by the low-density developments that border each business and commercial center, and the scarcity of high-density homes for poorer residents have led to its notorious overcrowding illustrated by slums forming overnight, even after demolitions or fires break them down. The major business districts are grand old Cubao, glitzy North EDSA at the North Triangle neighborhood, with its large malls, and the classy Libis or Eastwood area at the southeast (a little version of Singapore's Orchard Road, but with its Hollywood-esque twist: the Philippines' Walk of Fame). If you are seeking the city's nightlife, the Scout Area provides all you need to hang out through the night.

History edit

Quezon City was conceived as the future capital of the Philippines under the Philippine Commonwealth government, as Manila had become overpopulated. Most of the city was planned by the urban planner, William E. Parsons. Most areas that are now Quezon City are acquired from various municipalities in Rizal. Many government buildings were built to house the agencies as they move from Manila. Only parts of the plan had come to fruition when the Japanese invaded the Philippines in 1941. After World War II, Quezon City further expanded by ceding parts of Caloocan to form the Novaliches district, resulting in the geographic division of the municipality.

Climate edit

Quezon City
Climate chart (explanation)
Average max. and min. temperatures in °C
Precipitation+Snow totals in mm
Imperial conversion
Average max. and min. temperatures in °F
Precipitation+Snow totals in inches

The city has a tropical climate; daytime temperatures fall between 30s (86–102 °F), and has two seasons: dry and wet. Because of its location near the forested and rainy Sierra Madre, the dry season is rather cut short by the southwest monsoon. Average annual humidity is high, making the heat very unbearable, so dry season heat can take toll on your body; you will sweat easily on a short stay outside and do frequent changes in clothing.

Get in edit

For information on airports and seaports, see Metro Manila#Get in.

By plane edit

Ninoy Aquino International Airport (MNL IATA) is to the south, straddling Pasay and Parañaque. From there, travelers generally take a taxi or bus.

  • Taxi: All three terminals have taxi stands, served by yellow airport taxis, which charge double as the white ordinary taxis, which can only be used on trips to the airport and can only be hailed outside. It is also possible to just use the ride-hail service Grab from the airport.
  • Bus: For comfort, there are premium point-to-point buses provided by UBE Express, which alight at Cubao. Cheaper, but possibly slower due to Manila's perennial congestion are city buses with more frequent stops, which terminate near Terminal 2.

By bus edit

Provincial buses edit

As of 2022, provincial bus service only serve the Araneta City Bus Port bus terminal in Cubao, served by commuter routes from Bulacan and provincial routes from Central Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. From elsewhere in the north and south, buses terminate at the North Luzon Express Terminal (NLET) in Bocaue, the Parañaque Integrated Terminal Exchange (PITX) in Parañaque, and Starmall Alabang in Muntinlupa. All of these three terminals have connections with the Manila city bus network.

City bus edit

A huge majority of Metro Manila's bus routes serve Quezon City; general info is at Metro Manila#Get around

Get around edit

Several options are available covering various distances and some areas are accessible only by certain means of transportation.

By bus edit

Privately-operated city buses are plenty in Quezon City, and there is also a government-run free-fare bus service.

  • EDSA Carousel: BRT-like service running from the Parañaque Integrated Terminal Exchange (PITX) and Monumento (Caloocan) and uses a dedicated lane at the middle of EDSA. Serves Cubao and the Triangle areas.
  • 2 Antipolo-Quiapo: Local bus service between Antipolo (PITX) and Quiapo (Manila via Aurora Boulevard. Major destinations served are Katipunan area, Cubao and New Manila.
  • 6 PITX-Sapang Palay, 7 PITX-Fairview and 34 PITX-Montalban: Local bus services plying Quezon and Commonwealth avenues. 6 runs between Sapang Palay in Bulacan and PITX, 7 runs between PITX Fairview (with stops along Timog and East avenues) and 34 runs between PITX and Rodriguez (Montalban), turning off Commonwealth near the Batasang Pambansa.
  • 18 BGC–North EDSA: Local bus service between SM North EDSA and Bonifacio Global City via Congressional, Luzon, Katipunan and E. Rodriguez avenues. This is one of 4 city bus routes that serve Eastwood to the southeast.
  • QCityBus: intracity bus service operated by the Quezon City government, composed of 7 radial routes (QC1-QC6 and QC8) emanating from the Quezon Memorial Circle and 1 crosstown route (QC7 Katipunan–Welcome Rotonda). Services use air-conditioned coaches.

By train edit

While covering only parts of QC, LRT Line 2 and MRT Line 3 run through the main points in the city, namely Cubao, North EDSA and Katipunan.

The MRT Line 7, nearing completion, will extend train coverage to Fairview, most of Commonwealth Avenue, the UP campus, Quezon Memorial Circle and North EDSA. Most of the line is already complete, opening 2023 at the earliest.

By taxi edit

Metered taxis are probably the most comfortable option - just be wary of large taxi fares during rush hours and drivers being picky on their passengers (they try to avoid destinations in crowded areas).

By jeepney edit

Jeepneys, either traditional or modern ones, are most useful in areas of QC not already served by city buses such as UP Diliman, which is served by a loop service known as the "UP Ikot".

A lot of jeepney routes in QC also take the main roads primarily served by buses such as Commonwealth Avenue, but for trips that involve those roads, taking a bus is preferable.

By car edit

Driving in QC is not recommended, especially if your destination is along EDSA. Traffic is badly congested, streets are often narrow, left turns are rare than rights, and parking can be expensive in the CBDs. Reckless driving, road rage and police corruption are also problems.

Main roads in QC are EDSA, C-5 (E. Rodriguez Jr., Katipunan, Tandang Sora, Luzon, Congressional and Mindanao avenues), Commonwealth Avenue, Quezon Avenue, and Quirino Highway. With the exception of Quirino Highway, most of them are wide avenues with a median divider, but these are expected to be snarled during rush hour. Left turns are often prohibited on those roads, with street intersections crossing the median closed and replaced by U-turns.

QC implements the regionwide road space rationing ("number coding") scheme, with window hours before and after noontime except along EDSA.

Parking can be elusive and/or expensive at key locations. Parking spots at malls are bound to be scarce during peak shopping periods and weekly sales.

By tricycle edit

Smaller lanes and roads in residential areas are plied with bicycles fitted with side cars, termed padyak or traysikel.

See edit

Landmarks and parks edit

Quezon Memorial Circle
  • Quezon Memorial Circle. A national park and shrine bounded by the Elliptical Road. At its center is a mausoleum containing the remains of Manuel L. Quezon, the second President of the Philippines. The park surrounding the shrine is one of the few green lungs in the city, and is a haven for joggers and bikers alike. There are also eating establishments within the park, for those who'd rather sit and people watch. A railway station is being planned for the park, but until then the best option for a tourist is to take a cab.
  • Mabuhay Rotonda - Known as "Welcome Rotonda" before the name was changed during the 1990s. Built in 1948 during the term of Mayor Ponciano Bernardo. Quezon City had been declared the capital of the Philippines on July 17, 1948 and so the monument was built to welcome people to the capital, hence “Welcome Rotonda”.
  • Tandang Sora Birth Site - The place where the house of Melchora Aquino stood. It was in this site that she took care of the wounded Katipuneros and provided them food and shelter. Known as "Tandang Sora" she was officially adopted "Heroine of Quezon City" by a City Council Resolution. She died at the age of 107 on March 12, 1919.

Churches edit

  • Santo Domingo Church - home to the statue of the Our Lady of the Most Holy Rosary, said to be more than 400 years old.
  • San Pedro Bautista - one of the oldest churches in the country, housing the bones of the patron saint. There is also a catacomb in the basement of the church where the friars of the past were buried.
  • Hearts of Jesus and Mary Parish Church - A quiet church near former President Cory Aquino and current President Noynoy Aquino in Brgy. West Triangle, Quezon City
  • Capitol City Baptist Church - in West Avenue

Other places of interest edit

  • Tomas Morato and Timog Avenue Tourist Belt Area - where restaurants, bars, clubs, and other retail and entertainment establishments are found
  • La Loma Cockpit - one of the biggest cockpit arena in the country where cock fighting or sabong is held during Sundays and holidays. This supposed sport results in a cruel forced fight to the death between 2 male 'cocks' which have blades strapped to their legs. This is a large form of careless gambling that occurs within the area.
  • Ma Mon Luk - along Quezon Avenue and established in the 1920s, this restaurant is famous for its noodles and siopao (Chinese: 燒包; Pe̍h-ōe-jī: sio-pau)
  • Araneta Center - A mixed use residential and commercial complex housing several malls and budget accommodations. An ideal transport base as it's LRT-2 and MRT-3 stations connects 2 major lines which is a north to south line and an east to west line. Also houses several city and provincial bus terminals for travel within the metro or to other provinces. It is also home to the "Big Dome" which is the biggest arena in the country.

Learn edit

  • University of the Philippines Diliman - a coeducational and public research university and among the top 500 universities in the world
  • Ateneo de Manila University - a private teaching and research university run by Jesuits and among the top 500 universities in the world
  • Football for Peace Int'l-Phil. 2010 C.E. - a foundation-like group founded in North Fairview. It offers paid and free lessons on football (soccer) to children depending on financial capacity. Practice sessions held every Saturday in North Fairview Ph8 clubhouse playground at 7-10AM; in Quezon Memorial Circle Football Field every Saturday at 3-6PM. Football and other activities for children like arts, music, languages and other lessons. +63 927-400-8939.

Buy edit

Individual listings can be found in Quezon City's district articles

Eat edit

Individual listings can be found in Quezon City's district articles

Dining options vary upon each area or district of this large city. In the Diliman/Katipunan area, where some of the best universities in the country are located, dining options are largely geared towards the student population (though this does not say anything about the range or quality of available options -- posh dining is equally possible). The Tomas Morato area is a known nightlife area and serve good options for both dining and drinking, especially afterwork. When all else fails, people flock to the nearest mall (within just this city, there are several) survey the dining options there (from posh and chic restaurants to fast food dining in food courts).

Drink edit

Individual listings can be found in Quezon City's district articles

Sleep edit

Individual listings can be found in Quezon City's district articles

Stay safe edit

Crime is a major problem in Quezon City. Given its crowded situation, many people are struggling to live, even resorting to crime. Snatching, pickpocketing and robbery are common, so use common sense when going to rough areas. Also beware of the Budol-budol or Dugo-dugo scams, which can rip you off and take your valuables. The dreaded budol-budol scam is noted for using hypnosis and sleigh of hand, but they rarely target foreigners.

Women should be careful, or preferable, wear modestly when outside, as Quezon City has a troubling rate of street harassment, most commonly cat-calling and wolf-whistling, usually by bystanders. Women travellers should travel in groups, especially at night.

Quezon City has its share of rough areas, and the problems do perfectly rhyme: slums, fires, trash, thugs and drugs. Commonwealth and Payatas are the seediest of the city's barangays, but there is more of it; parts of the Scout Area are best avoided. Fortunately, most slums are outside the tourist track, so they are best avoided for a good reason.

Beware also of scams on taxis and tricycles, most commonly where the driver pretends to know you. There are numerous case of locals falling victim to these scams, usually becoming victims of robbery, or brought to illicit locations, if not being ripped off on the fare. Women should take caution when calling a ride, especially at night and when alone.

Go next edit

Within Metro Manila edit

Visiting Manila may come to your mind after staying in Quezon City. Other options within the metro are:

  • Makati – Philippines' financial capital, with towering skyscrapers, the glitzy Ayala Center, and high society, contrasting with the hassles of crowded residential districts.
  • Marikina - The "Shoe Capital of the Philippines", not complete without visiting its Shoe Museum or strolling the Riverbanks.
  • San Juan – Shop till you drop at the Greenhills Shopping Center, or if you're lucky to visit on June, join the Wattah-wattah Festival, part of the Feast of St. John the Baptist celebrations with water fights resembling Songkran celebrations, and get wet.

Northern Luzon edit

Quezon City is a hub for buses to northern Luzon.

  • Alaminos – The Hundred Islands with its pristine beaches.
  • Baguio – The "Summer Capital of the Philippines", with cool climate, pine trees, and mountains.
  • Banaue – World-famous rice terraces and Ifugao culture
  • San Fernando – Taste of Kapampangan cuisine and the spirit of Filipino Christmas.
  • Vigan – Heritage city with a well-preserved downtown
Routes through Quezon City
Continues as   to Manila  S   N  ValenzuelaSan Fernando
Becomes   to Manila via Navotas. N1 follows MacArthur Highway to ValenzuelaCaloocan  N   S  MandaluyongMakati
Becomes    N   S  PasigTaguig
Continues to Manila as    W   E  MarikinaAntipolo

This city travel guide to Quezon City is a usable article. It has information on how to get there and on restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.