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Guangzhou, a great place to hang out
If asked what you like about Guangzhou, the answer may be like falling in love with a man.


If asked what you like about Guangzhou, the answer may be like falling in love with a man. While Beijing and Shanghai tend to be ostentatious, Guangzhou always stays low-key and pragmatic, touching your heart with meticulous bits of life that make you fall for the city.

A city of love

In Guangzhou, you are often touched by such inadvertent acts. No matter on buses or on the metro, people are seen offering their seats to others in need every day. Usually, someone would stand up whenever seeing an elderly or a pregnant woman get in, without anyone to remind them or order them to do so.

It is a tradition in Guangzhou to respect the old and love the young. In the belief that a hedge between keeps friendship green, Guangzhouers normally prefer to go low-key like their ancestors. The streets in the old areas of Guangzhou still retain the vestige of the eras of the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) and the Republic of China (1912-1949) and remind people of the integration and melting of ancient Chinese culture and the culture of the Nanyue tribe (aboriginals that lived in the Lingnan region in ancient times).

A city of fashionistas, but with an eye to coziness

The people in Guangzhou give most consideration to the coziness and fitness of clothes. It really doesn't matter whether it is a brand name or not. What matters is the clothes' cost performance. So when they buy a piece of clothing, they will ensure to get what they pay for, which reflects that Guangzhouers are very clear-headed and rational in shopping.

The city has large booming wholesale markets, which provide its residents with tons of choices. To name a few, the Wanling Plaza quality products wholesale market, the Zhanxi clothes wholesale market and the Shi San Hang clothes wholesale market.

A city of foodies

An undisputed fact speaks that apart from life and death, nothing is a big deal in Guangzhou except food.

Shrimp dumplings, steamed rice rolls with barbecued pork, fish meat balls, steamed chicken feet with bean sauce... there seems to be a million choices yet they are merely for the Cantonese-style breakfast — drinking morning tea. For the people in Guangzhou, they can idle a whole morning in a restaurant with a pot of tea and a few dishes of dim sum, drinking tea and chatting.

In Guangzhou, you can expect to see fully packed restaurants and roadside food stalls even at 2 a.m. For those working overtime till midnight, they can find all kinds of snacks nearby. At the down-to-earth roadside food stalls, popularly known as “da pai dang” in Chinese, people can temporarily forget their identity and set aside pressure from work and life, just eating, drinking, chatting and relaxing themselves to the fullest.

A livable city

Clothing, food, shelter and transportation are the basic necessities of life. They are also criteria to judge the appeal of a city. Among China's first-tier cities which include Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen, high prices and fast-paced life wear down people’s sense of belonging. But Guangzhou, the other first-tier city of China, has emerged as a city suitable for living due to its superior public services, lower housing prices and good air quality.

A city with convenient transportation system

Operating nine metro lines, the Guangzhou-Foshan Line and the Zhujiang New Town Automated People Mover System (simplified as the “Guangzhou APM”), Guangzhou offers a sound transportation system. The metro stations, which are located in densely populated areas, make life convenient for the city’s residents.

Guangzhou enables a ‘three-hour life circle’. According to the latest government planning, high-speed railways will connect all cities of Guangdong by 2020.

A historical vibrant city

Although a “millennium business capital,” Guangzhou offers much more than business and trade. A city full of migrants, it is regarded as home by all its residents. It has seen many rises and falls but has never changed its pace.

Even on workdays, you can find a lot of people in the city’s parks. There are senior people, who take care of their grandchildren. There are also people who walk their dogs. Everyone seems to enjoy their life.

In the old areas, you can find Cantonese-speaking elderly people and children, Cantonese food, pants-wearing multimillionaires and old buildings, which show a vivid and vibrant facet of the city.

A city with various recreations

There must be some places in Guangzhou that impress you as the city images.

In Guangzhou, you find places with different characters and atmospheres: the hilarious, prosperous Tianhe CBD; the historical, cultural Xiguan; the artistic Xiaozhou village and Shamian; the youthful University Town and pubs featuring exotic and romantic ambience.
Each city is unique in itself and becomes vital when filled with emotions from its people. Such emotions, coming from people’s daily lives, enrich the city and make it a warm place to live in.

Editor:Joanna You
Modern Guangzhou Souvenirs picks some of the best Cantonese-style souvenirs for you – including those famous pieces as well as lighter and and comparatively cheap items but still with that defining Cantonese character.

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