Guangzhou, once known as Canton to the Western world, is a bustling metropolitan city that, let's be honest, is not exactly a tourist paradise. What greets you is smog, a never-ending maze of flyovers and the endless stream of traffic that never seems to end no matter the time of day or night. And the teeming masses of humanity! Boy, do they occupy every inch of land space. There are more than 10 million people in Guangzhou, the third largest city in China. And if they all jumped at the same time, the world would definitely tilt over. Kidding aside, Guangzhou is a large and highly urbanized. But it is one of the most liberal cities in China. And if you look beneath the surface, you'll see a diamond in the rough, one that is worthy of exploration.
Although there aren't as many attractions in Guangzhou compared to Shanghai and Beijing, it has its share of landmarks, temples, parks and just recently, amusement centers that individual tourists and families will delight in. Guangxiao Temple should be first on your list since this is the oldest and largest in the Lingnan Area. The Liurong Temple, with its eight-sided Flowering Pagoda is another major tourist attraction. Other landmarks you should not miss include the Chen Clan Academy, San Yuan Temple and the buildings at Shamian Island. For a leisurely stroll, head to Yuexiu Park, the largest in China, that also features several lakes and the Ming Dynasty Zhenai Tower. Rare and beautiful flowers can be seen at the Yuntai Garden. Hike up the Baiyun Shan or the Lianhua Shan. Newer attractions for the whole family include the Guangzhou Zoo, Chimelong Resort and Guangzhou Ocean World.
To say that the best food in China is in Guangzhou is an understatement. You can try their dim sums and their specialties as roast suckling pig. Or, if you lean to the exotic, you can taste stewed snake, wild cat, stewed wild dog meat or other offerings at Shangxia Jiu Lu. If you want more traditional fare, head to Liuhua Lu where you can find more places that cater to every craving.
You'll certainly have to watch your wallet as there are many (and we mean many) shopping malls and markets in Guangzhou that sell anything and everything. The main shopping thoroughfare is the Beijing Lu Pedestrian Street, where you can also find the Mayflower Plaza. Another shopping street is Shangxia Jiu Lu where Liwan Plaza is located. If it is antiques you're after, head to Xiguan Antique Street. Other modern shopping complexes for the hip shopper are Zhengjia Plaza, China Plaza and Wang Fu Jing.
#55 Xi Lang Mai Cun North, Huadi S Road
48号 Sports West Rd, Tianhe, Guangzhou, Guangdong, China
Guangzhou, Guangdong, China