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Parañaque City is located in the southern portion of Metro Manila. It is a mostly residential area. There are, however, still a good number of commercial establishments. The Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) is usually associated with Parañaque City. Technically, though, NAIA spans the border between the cities of Pasay and Parañaque.   In pre-colonial times, Parañaque was known as "Palanyag," which means "point of navigation." One account says this was because a huge balete tree that allegedly "looked like a ship when viewed from afar" had served as a landmark for the settlement. Another account claims that the name "Palanyag" was actually some sort of portmanteau of the words "paglalayag" (which means "to set sail," in reference to the fishermen in the area) and "palayan" (which means "rice field," in reference to the rice farmers in the area). Interestingly enough, there is no official explanation on Palanyag's name change to Parañaque. Several scholars theorize that as different people came to the town, its name was gradually adulterated resulting into the word "palanyague." When the colonizers arrived, they must have misheard the town's name as "Parañaque." Perhaps Parañaque's most popular attraction is the Redemptorist Church in Baclaran, where the Shrine of Our Lady of Perpetual Help is located. Devotees swear that going to this church often leads to their prayers being answered. Wednesday has been tagged as "Baclaran Day," as devotees usually flock there on that particular day.


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