San Nicolas
District of Manila
The intersection of Madrid and San Fernando Streets, in front of the San Nicolas Fire Station
RegionNational Capital Region
Congressional districtPart of the 3rd district of Manila
 • Total42,957[1]
Zip codes
Area codes2

San Nicolas is one of the sixteen districts in the city of Manila in the Philippines. It is located at the west central part of the city, on the northern bank of Pasig River[2] bounded by the districts of Binondo to the east by Estero de Binondo, and Tondo to the north and west by Circumferential Road 1, and by the Pasig River to the south. Considered as a heritage district of Manila,[3] this community has kept its 19th-century ancestral houses, which symbolizes the wealthy lives of the people who used to live there, similar to the ancestral houses of Silay and Vigan.

As of the May 1, 2020 national census, the population of San Nicolas, which is composed of 15 barangays named as numbers from 268 to 276 and from 281 to 286, is 42,957. This is slightly lower than the 2010 census that counted San Nicolas residents at 44,241.[1]


San Nicolas was originally a fishing town named Baybay, which is also a Tagalog word for shore.[4] Regalado Trota Jose, a historian, mentions San Nicolas in his book about bells as the formerly Baybay town during the late 16th century.[3] San Nicolas is the western part of the first Chinatown in the Philippines, and perhaps the world.[5] The eastern part of the Chinatown is Binondo, which was founded in 1594 by Governor-General Luis Perez Dasmariñas.[5] The Dominican order came to western part of Chinatown in 1596[5] and then founded San Nicolas in 1598.[3] This was the first mission by the Dominicans outside Intramuros.[3]

In 1901, during the American colonization of the Philippines, Daniel Burnham, an American architect and urban planner, was commissioned to build a Plan of Manila.[6] The result of the plan was the making of places and parishes that included San Nicolas.[7] In modern times, San Nicolas is one of the administrative districts of Manila and part of the third legislative district of Manila.[8] It became an extension of the Filipino-Chinese community in Binondo.[9]


Barangay Population (2020)[1]
Barangay 268 489
Barangay 269 904
Barangay 270 918
Barangay 271 633
Barangay 272 1,064
Barangay 273 825
Barangay 274 1,944
Barangay 275 19,809
Barangay 276 2,543
Barangay 281 2,288
Barangay 282 2,458
Barangay 283 1,345
Barangay 284 961
Barangay 285 2,066
Barangay 286 4,710

List of cultural properties of San Nicolas

In art


See also


  1. ^ a b c "Highlights of the National Capital Region (NCR) Population 2020 Census of Population and Housing (2020 CPH)". Philippine Statistics Authority. Retrieved 13 November 2021.
  2. ^ "Manila Reborn - Filipinas Heritage Library". Google Arts & Culture. Retrieved 2021-04-15.
  3. ^ a b c d "Why San Nicolas is Manila's heritage district". Inquirer Lifestyle. 2020-11-02. Retrieved 2021-04-15.
  4. ^ See, Teresita Ang (2018-11-05). "Behind Binondo's whimsical street names are some amusing stories". ABS-CBN News. Retrieved 2021-04-15.
  5. ^ a b c Lustre Jr, Philip M. (2018-02-18). "Where heroes and kin used to tread". Retrieved 2021-04-15.
  6. ^ "Historical Background | EMB - National Capital Region". Retrieved 2021-04-15.
  7. ^ "NCR - Regional Profile". Department of Trade and Industry Philippines. Retrieved 2021-04-15.
  8. ^ Torres, Amaryllis T.; Samson, Laura L.; Diaz, Manuel P. (2015). "FILIPINO GENERATIONS IN A CHANGING LANDSCAPE" (PDF). Philippine Social Science Council. p. 120. ISBN 978-971-8514-36-8.
  9. ^ "Memory and modernity in San Nicolas District". The Urban Roamer. 2013-03-30. Retrieved 2021-04-15.