Places of interest in Guangzhou

  • Shangxiajiu Street

    Brief introduction:  The most famous commercial street in Guangzhou.

        Details: Over 1200 meters long and with more than 300 shops, Shangxiajiu Shopping Street in Guangzhou of South China's Guangdong Province is a prosperous commercial society. It starts from Shangxiajiu Road in the east, and ends at Dishipu W. Road in the west. With a history of more than one hundred years, it is one of the most bustling commercial streets in China. It is also known as the Xiguan Commercial Corridor and is one of the Top Ten Guangzhou Tourist Attractions.
        Shangxiajiu Street is composed of the unique and ancient architecture of qilou (define what this is) and teahouses, featuring the characteristics of South European and local styles. Shangxiajiu has a group of old famous stores, such as the Yong'an Department Store, the Guangzhou Garment Store, the Herring Shoes and Hats Store, and the Dalu Clock and Watch Store.It also has some well renowned restaurants, including the Guangzhou Restaurant, the Taotaoju Restaurant, Wenchang Chicken, and Taotao Ginger and Onion Chicken.
        Other items include: the Hualin Furniture and Jade Objects Street; Qingping Road; the Liwan Square, which contains a group of residential apartment buildings; and a large number of stores selling stationary.More than 1,400 years ago, Dharma, an accomplished Indian monk, came to China as a missionary. His first landing place was at Xiajiu Road (today's Xilaichudi, the first landing place of the Westerners). The monk then constructed the Xilai Temple (today's Hualin Temple), paving the way for the establishment of Chinese Buddhism Zen and the Shaolin Temple at Mount Song.
        Shangxiajiu Street opened in 1995 and since then, many top state officials including Jiang Zemin, Li Peng, Zhu Rongji, Ye Xuanping, and Tung Chee-hwa have visited the place. The most splendid moment in history is recorded on the huge board in the middle of the street: In spring of 2001, President Jiang Zemin visited Shangxiajiu Pedestrian Shopping Street. Shangxiajiu is one of the three major municipal-level shopping areas of Guangzhou.

  • Canton Tower

    Brief introduction:  The tallest tower in China, the second tallest tower in the world.

        Details: The Canton Tower, formally Guangzhou TV Astronomical and Sightseeing Tower, is a 604 metres (1,982 ft) tall multi-purpose observation tower in the Haizhu District of the city of Guangzhou (historically known as Canton), in Guangdong, China.The tower was topped out in 2009 and it became operational on 29 September 2010 for the 2010 Asian Games. The tower briefly held the title of tallest tower in the world, replacing the CN Tower, before being surpassed by the Tokyo Skytree. It was the tallest structure in China prior to the topping out of Shanghai Tower on 3 August 2013. It is now the second tallest tower and the fourth-tallest freestanding structure in the world.
        Canton Tower was constructed by Guangzhou New Television Tower Group. It is designed by the Dutch architects Mark Hemel and Barbara Kuit of Information Based Architecture, together with Arup, the international design, engineering and business consulting firm headquartered in London, United Kingdom. In 2004, Information Based Architecture and Arup won the international competition, in which many internationally large architectural offices participated. The same year the IBA – Arup team in Amsterdam, developed the tower's concept design. In later stages, IBA cooperated mainly with the local Chinese office of Arup and a Local Design Institute. Subsequently, in 2005, the groundbreaking of the Canton Tower took place.
        The tower, although not fully completed, opened to the public on 1 October 2010 in time for the 16th Asian Games, hosted by Guangzhou in November 2010.The rooftop observatory finally received its official opening in December 2011.The Canton Tower is situated alongside the Yiyuan Road (Yuejiang Road West), in the city of Guangzhou, the capital and the largest city of the provincial level division of Guangdong which lies in the southernmost part of the People's Republic of China. Additionally, several famous landmarks surround the tower, including pagodas, a park towards the south, and several high-rise apartments, buildings, and skyscrapers, both commercial and residential.

  • Shamian

    Brief introduction:  Guangzhou's famous tourist area, scenic area and leisure resort.

        Details: Shamian (also romanized as Shameen or Shamin, both from its Cantonese pronunciation) is a sandbank island in the Liwan District of Guangzhou, Guangdong province, China. The island's name literally means "sandy surface" in Chinese. The territory was divided into two concessions given to France and the United Kingdom by the Qing government in the 19th century. The island is a gazetted historical area that serves as a tranquil reminder of the colonial European period, with quiet pedestrian avenues flanked by trees and lined by historical buildings in various states of upkeep. The island is the location of several hotels, a youth hostel, restaurants and tourist shops selling curios and souvenirs.
        Shamian Island was an important port for Guangzhou's foreign trade from the Song to the Qing Dynasty. From the 18th to the mid 19th century, the foreigners lived and did business in a row of houses known as the Thirteen Factories, on the banks of the Pearl River to the east the present Shamian, which was then an anchorage for thousands of boat people. In 1859, Great Britain and France dug an artificial river (now called Shajichong) to the north, making it an island. Since then, Shamian became a strategic point for city defense during the First and Second Opium Wars. The British captured the Shamian Fort in the Canton River operations in March 1841 during the First Opium War. In the 1847 expedition to Canton, they seized the Shamian batteries along with the rest of the forts guarding the city. In the first armed conflict of the Second Opium War, the British recaptured the forts in 1856.
        In 1859, the territory was divided in two concessions given to France and the United Kingdom (of which 3/5 belonged to the British and 2/5 to the French).It was connected to the mainland by two bridges, which were closed at 10pm as a security measure. The British arch bridge, also called the "Bridge of England" and built in 1861, to the north was guarded by Sikh police officers, and the French bridge to the east was guarded by Vietnamese (Cochinchina) recruits with the Troupes coloniales. Trading companies from Britain, the United States, France, Holland, Italy, Germany, Portugal, and Japan built stone mansions along the waterfront. The construction on the island was characterized by climate-adapted but Western-plan detached houses with hipped roofs and large verandahs. The island was the scene of fighting during the "June 23 incident" in 1925. After 1949, the mansions of Shamian became government offices or apartment houses and the churches were turned into factories.

  • Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall

    Brief introduction:  The people of Guangzhou and overseas Chinese raised money for the commemoration of Sun Yat-sen.

        Details: The Sun Yat-sen or Zhongshan Memorial Hall is an octagon-shaped building in Guangzhou, capital of China's Guangdong Province. The hall was designed by Lu Yanzhi and was built with funds raised by local and overseas Chinese people in memory of Sun Yat-sen. Construction work commenced in 1929 and completed in 1931. The hall is a large octagonal structure with a span of 71 meters without pillars, housing a large stage and seats 3,240 people. The memorial hall stands on the site of Guangzhou's Presidential Palace during the Constitutional Protection Movement, when the Nationalists operated a rival "Chinese" government to the Zhili Clique's Beijing regime. The palace was damaged during Ye Ju's 16 June 1922 attack on Sun Yat-sen, during which—though he had already fled—his wife narrowly escaped shelling and rifle fire before meeting him on the gunboat Yongfeng, where they were joined by Chiang Kai-shek. The hall itself has been severely damaged and repaired several times until 1998, when it was comprehensively upgraded to its present-day condition. A statue of Sun Yat-sen was erected in front of the main entrance.

  • Baiyun Mountain

    Brief introduction:  The area is 20.98 square kilometers, and the main peak is 382 meters high.

        Details: Baiyun is Mandarin Chinese for "White Clouds", derived from views of the mountain's peaks shrouded in mist during late Spring or after a rain. Its former English name, Pakwan, is a form of the Cantonese pronunciation of the same name. In English, it is also known as White Cloud Mountain, Mount Baiyun, Baiyun Shan, or—since the "mountain" is, properly speaking, a "mountain range"—the "Baiyun Mountains".Baiyun is informally known as the "City's Lung", from its greenery. It is also acclaimed as the "First Beauty in Guangzhou” or the “Most Famous Mountain South of Ling”. Moxing Peak, its highest point, is similarly sometimes called the “First Peak under the Southern Sky”.Baiyun Mountain has been famed as a scenic spot since ancient times. Its visitors predated the foundation of Panyu (now Guangzhou) in 214 bc, with various celebrities of the Warring States period (5th–3rd centuries bc) known to have traveled there. Its beauty was again celebrated during the 3rd–5th century Jin Dynasty and the 7th–9th century Tang. Since the Song, various scenes at Baiyun have been named among the Eight Sights of Ram City, lists of Guangzhou's loveliest spots. However, few of the historical sites have survived to the present day and others—such as the view of Guangzhou's old walled city at dusk—have changed drastically as the city has expanded to and around the mountain.