This article also appeared in the March 2017 issue of Malindo Magazine
This spring, take a trip to Guangzhou if you haven’t already been there. Located on the Pearl River north of Macau, Guangzhou is one of China’s largest cities and still continues to play a role as the country’s major port and transportation hub. History buffs will love the Chen Clan Ancestral Hall-Folk Craft Museum, families will have a blast at the Chimelong Safari Park and photographers will be spoiled for photo opportunities at the vast array of architectural and scenic sights throughout the city. So if you’re considering Guangzhou, these are five places you shouldn’t miss:
This is China’s tallest TV tower. It is nicknamed the “Supermodel” due to its state-of-the-art design, which was inspired by the turning hips of a woman. Of course, you don’t have to be a photographer to appreciate the stunning view from here. Canton Tower offers a breathtaking panoramic view overlooking the city, which lights up resplendently at night. Apart from the observation decks, you can dine at the world’s highest rotating restaurant or ride in the Bubble Tram, a transparent carriage that moves along the perimeter of the tower at 465 metres above the ground.
Shamian Island depicts a beautiful, timeless side of Guangzhou. Back in the old days, this place was teeming with European trade companies, which is reflected in the Western-looking architecture of the buildings. It’s a peaceful enclave, boasting picturesque gardens and pretty buildings, along with a sprinkling of restaurants and cafes. On a nice day, Shamian Island can be very romantic, which is no surprise that many couples flock here to get their engagement photos taken.
Chimelong Safari Park
If you’re traveling with kids, you won’t regret taking a day trip at the Chimelong Safari Park, which spans about 320 acres and is currently ranked as the largest animal safari theme park in China. Kids and adults will enjoy the plethora of attractions within the park, such as pandas, tigers and other animals, as well as the animal circus, which features a 1.5-hour long entertainment of comedic, musical and acrobatic acts involving incredibly talented animals. For those who are seeking something beyond a zoo experience, there’s also an amusement park and a Chimelong Waterpark.
Pearl River Cruise
Pearl River’s night cruise is particularly special because the whole city springs to life in a myriad of glistening lights, and the experience is simply magical. You’ll want to whip out your cameras for this 2-hour ride as you slowly cruise down the river, passing sights such as the Zhuhai Square, the Guangzhou Hotel and Shamian Island buildings – basically all of Guangzhou’s scenic sights wrapped up in one peaceful boat ride.
Chen Clan Ancestral Hall-Folk Craft Museum
Lovers of architecture, culture and history will revel in the beauty of this museum. There’s plenty of arts and crafts to explore. The museum itself is located in the Chen Clan Academy, which was once a grand imperial examination hall back in 1894 during the Qing Dynasty. The rich architecture and craftsmanship make for great photographs too.
How fluent is your Mandarin? Having a good grasp of the language will prove to be an advantage as you’re navigating around China, so it’s always best to start picking up some basic phrases before you go, such as “How much does this cost?”, “Where is the bathroom?” and so forth. Get Mandarin tutors on Kaodim. You’ll receive free quotations so you can compare rates and hire the tutor you deem best.
If you’re planning a trip to Guangzhou, don’t forget to log on to Malindo Air for good rates and a great in-flight experience!
written by Carissa Gan