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Canton; Kwangchow
Canton Tower 20220626 (cropped).jpg
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City of Rams, City of Flowers, City of Rice Spike
Guangdong subdivisions - Guangzhou.svg
Location of Guangzhou City jurisdiction in Guangdong
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Location of the city center in Guangdong
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Guangzhou (China)
Coordinates(Guangdong People's Government): 23°07′48″N113°15′36″E / 23.13000°N 113.26000°E / 23.13000; 113.26000
Province Guangdong
Settled214 BC
Founded by Qin dynasty
Municipal seat Yuexiu District
  Type Sub-provincial city
  Body Guangzhou Municipal People's Congress
   CCP Secretary Lin Keqing
   Congress Chairman Wang Yanshi
   Mayor Sun Zhiyang
   CPPCC Chairman Li Yiwei
   Prefecture-level and sub-provincial city 7,434.4 km2 (2,870.4 sq mi)
2,256.4 km2 (871.2 sq mi)
20,144.1 km2 (7,777.7 sq mi)
21 m (69 ft)
 (2020 census) [2]
   Prefecture-level and sub-provincial city 18,676,605
  Density2,500/km2 (6,500/sq mi)
  Urban density12,000/km2 (31,000/sq mi)
  Metro density1,600/km2 (4,200/sq mi)
Demonym Cantonese
GDP [3]
   Prefecture-level and sub-provincial city
  • CN¥ 2.823 trillion
  • US$ 437.7 billion
  Per capita
  • CN¥ 151,162
  • US$ 23,436
Time zone UTC+08:00 (China Standard Time)
Postal code
Area code (0)20
ISO 3166 code CN-GD-01
License plate prefixes粤A
City Flower Bombax ceiba
City Bird Chinese hwamei
Languages Cantonese, Standard Chinese


Map of Guangzhou (labeled as KUANG-CHOU (CANTON) Guang Zhou 
) in surrounding region (AMS, 1954) Txu-oclc-10552568-nf49-4.jpg
Map of Guangzhou (labeled as KUANG-CHOU (CANTON) 廣州) in surrounding region (AMS, 1954)
Tiantang Peak, highest mountain in Guangzhou Tiantang Peak.jpg
Tiantang Peak, highest mountain in Guangzhou

The old town of Guangzhou was near Baiyun Mountain on the east bank of the Pearl River (Zhujiang) about 80 mi (129 km) from its junction with the South China Sea and about 300 mi (483 km) below its head of navigation. [41] It commanded the rich alluvial plain of the Pearl River Delta, with its connection to the sea protected at the Humen Strait. [41] The present city spans 7,434.4 km2 (2,870.4 sq mi) on both sides of the river from 112° 57′ to 114° 03′ E longitude and 22° 26′ to 23° 56′ N latitude in south-central Guangdong. The Pearl is the 4th-largest river of China. [116] Intertidal ecosystems exist on the tidal flat lining the river estuary, however, many of the tidal flats have been reclaimed for agriculture. [117] Baiyun Mountain is now locally referred to as the city's "lung" ( ). [10] [118] [ why? ]

The elevation of the prefecture generally increases from southwest to northeast, with mountains forming the backbone of the city and the ocean comprising the front. Tiantang Peak is the highest point of elevation at 1,210 m (3,970 ft) above sea level.

Hanyu Pinyin Guǎngzhōu
Cantonese Yale
  • Canton
  • Kwangchow
Literal meaning"Broad Prefecture"

Natural resources

There are 47 different types of minerals and also 820 ore fields in Guangzhou, including 18 large and medium-sized oil deposits. The major minerals are granite, cement limestone, ceramic clay, potassium, albite, salt mine, mirabilite, nepheline, syenite, fluorite, marble, mineral water, and geothermal mineral water. Since Guangzhou is located in the water-rich area of southern China, it has a wide water area with many rivers and water systems, accounting for 10% of the total land area. The rivers and streams improve the landscape and keep the ecological environment of the city stable. [119]

Water resources

The main characteristics of Guangzhou's water resources are that there are relatively few local water resources and relatively abundant transit water resources. The city's water area is 74,400 hectares, accounting for 10.05% of the city's land area. The main rivers include Beijiang, Dongjiang North Mainstream, Zengjiang, Liuxi River, Baini River, Pearl River Guangzhou Reach, Shiqiao Waterway, and Shawan Waterway. Beijiang, The Dongjiang River flows through Guangzhou City and merges with the Pearl River to flow into the sea. The local average total water resources is 7.979 billion cubic meters, including 7.881 billion cubic meters of surface water and 1.487 billion cubic meters of groundwater. Calculated based on the amount of local water resources and the permanent population counted in the sixth census in 2010, there are 1.0601 million cubic meters of water resources per square kilometer, with an average of 628 cubic meters per capita, which is one-half of the country's per capita water resources. The amount of water resources for transit passengers is 186.024 billion cubic meters, which is 23 times the total local water resources. The passenger water resources are mainly concentrated in the southern Wanghe District and Zengcheng District. The passenger water resources diverted from the Xijiang and Beijiang Rivers into Guangzhou City are 159.15 billion cubic meters, and the passenger water resources diverted from the Dongjiang River into the north mainstream of the Dongjiang River are 14.203 billion cubic meters. meters and the water inflow from the upper reaches of the Zengjiang River is 2.828 billion cubic meters. The southern river network area is in the tidal influence area, with large runoff and a strong tidal effect. The three major entrances of the Pearl River, Humen, Jiaomen, and Hongqili, enter the Lingding Ocean and exit the South China Sea in the south of Guangzhou City. The annual high tide volume is 271 billion cubic meters and the annual ebb tide volume is 408.8 billion cubic meters. The annual runoff of the three major entrances is 137.7 billion cubic meters. Compared with meters, the annual tide can bring a large amount of water, part of which is freshwater resources that can be utilized. [120]

Biological Resources

Cultivated crops in Guangzhou have the distinctive characteristics of the transition from the tropics to the subtropics, and it is one of the richest regions in China in terms of fruit tree resources, including three major categories of tropical, subtropical, and temperate zones, 41 families, 82 genera and 174 species, totaling more than 500 varieties (among which there are 55 major varieties of lychee). It is the center of origin and variety of lychee, longan, yellow skin, black (white) olive, and so on. Vegetables are known for their high quality and variety, with 15 major categories, 127 species, and more than 370 varieties. Flowers include fresh cut flowers (fresh cut flowers, fresh cut leaves, fresh cut branches), potted plants (potted flowers, bonsai, flower bed plants), ornamental seedlings, edible and medicinal flowers, industrial and other uses of flowers, lawns, seedlings, etc. More than 3,000 traditional varieties and in recent years the introduction of new varieties, development, and utilization. Grain, cash crops, livestock, poultry, aquatic products, wild animals, and a wide variety of famous and excellent varieties, including Zengcheng Simiao rice is the first protected variety in Guangzhou City to obtain geographical indications. [121]

Mineral Resources

The geological structure of Guangzhou City is quite complex, with good conditions for mineralization. Forty-seven kinds of minerals (including subspecies) have been discovered, with 820 mineral sites and 25 large and medium-sized mining areas. The main minerals are granite for construction, limestone for cement, ceramic clay, potassium, sodium feldspar, salt mines, manganese, nepheline orthoclase, fluorite, marble, mineral water, and thermal mineral water. Energy minerals and non-ferrous minerals in the area are in short supply, sporadically distributed, small in scale, and unstable in grade. [122] ,


Despite being located just south of the Tropic of Cancer, Guangzhou has a humid subtropical climate (Köppen Cwa) influenced by the East Asian monsoon. Summers are wet with high temperatures, high humidity, and a high heat index. Winters are mild and comparatively dry. Guangzhou has a lengthy monsoon season, spanning from April through September. Monthly averages range from 13.8 °C (56.8 °F) in January to 28.9 °C (84.0 °F) in July, while the annual mean is 22.4 °C (72.3 °F). [10] Autumn, from October to December, is very moderate, cool and windy, and is the best travel time. [123] The relative humidity is approximately 76 percent, whereas annual rainfall in the metropolitan area is over 1,950 mm (77 in). [10] With monthly percent possible sunshine ranging from 17 percent in March to 51 percent in October, the city receives 1,559 hours of bright sunshine annually, considerably less than nearby Shenzhen and Hong Kong. Extreme temperatures have ranged from 0 °C (32 °F) to 39.4 °C (102.9 °F). [124] The last recorded snowfall in the city was on January 24, 2016, 87 years after the second last recorded snowfall. [125]

Climate data for Guangzhou (1991–2020 normals, extremes 1951–2010)
Record high °C (°F)28.4
Mean daily maximum °C (°F)18.7
Daily mean °C (°F)13.8
Mean daily minimum °C (°F)10.6
Record low °C (°F)0.1
Average precipitation mm (inches)51.1
Average precipitation days (≥ 0.1 mm)7.29.413.815.317.419.417.016.812.
Average relative humidity (%)72768082818279807770696776
Mean monthly sunshine hours 112.977.561.669.1103.4127.5179.0166.4167.0182.2159.7152.71,559
Percent possible sunshine 33241718253243424651494636
Source: China Meteorological Data Service Center [126] [127] [128] all-time extreme temperature [124]

Administrative divisions

Guangzhou is a sub-provincial city. It has direct jurisdiction over eleven districts:

Administrative divisions of Guangzhou
(km2) [130]
(2022) [131]
Subdivisions [132]
Subdistricts Towns Residential
440100Guangzhou7,434.4018,734,100 Yuexiu 5100001363415331142
440103 Liwan 59.101,123,700Shiweitang Subdistrict51000022 195 
440104 Yuexiu 33.801,028,500 Beijing Subdistrict 51000018 267 
440105 Haizhu 90.401,798,300Jianghai Subdistrict51000018 257 
440106 Tianhe 96.332,221,700Tianyuan Subdistrict51000021 205 
440111 Baiyun 795.793,637,000Jingtai Subdistrict510000184253118
440112 Huangpu 484.171,191,800Luogang Subdistrict5105001419028
440113 Panyu 529.942,807,400 Shiqiao Subdistrict 51140011587177
440114 Huadu 970.041,706,200Huacheng Subdistrict5108004650188
440115 Nansha 783.86929,400 Huangge Town5114003628128
440117 Conghua 1,974.50739,700Jiekou Subdistrict5109003546221
440118 Zengcheng 1,616.471,550,400Licheng Subdistrict5113004755282


Guangzhou is the main manufacturing hub of the Pearl River Delta, one of mainland China's leading commercial and manufacturing regions. In 2021, its GDP reached ¥2,823 billion (US$444.37 billion in nominal), making it the 2nd largest economy in the South-Central China region after Shenzhen. [133] Guangzhou's GDP (nominal) was $444.37 billion in 2021, exceeding that [134] Guangzhou's per capita was ¥151,162 ($23,794 in nominal). [133] Guangzhou is considered one of the most prosperous cities in China. Guangzhou ranks 10th in the world and 5th in China (after Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong and Shenzhen) in terms of the number of billionaires according to the Hurun Global Rich List 2020. [25] Guangzhou is projected to be among the world top 10 largest cities in terms of nominal GDP in 2035 (together with Shanghai, Beijing and Shenzhen in China) according to a study by Oxford Economics, [135] and its nominal GDP per capita will reach above $42,000 in 2030. [136] Guangzhou also ranks 21st globally (between Washington, D.C., and Amsterdam) and 8th in the whole Asia & Oceania region (behind Shanghai, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Singapore, Beijing, Shenzhen and Dubai) in the 2020 Global Financial Centers Index (GFCI). [22] Owing to rapid industrialization, it was once also considered a rather polluted city. After green urban planning was implemented, it is now one of the most livable cities in China.

Zhujiang New Town

Zhujiang New Town is the central business district of Guangzhou in the 21st century. It covers 6.44 km2 in Tianhe District. Multiple financial institutions are headquartered in this area.

Canton Fair

The Canton Fair, formally the "China Import and Export Fair", is held every year in April and October by the Ministry of Trade. Inaugurated in the spring of 1957, the fair is a major event for the city. It is the trade fair with the longest history, highest level, and largest scale in China. [137] From the 104th session onwards, the fair moved to the new Guangzhou International Convention and Exhibition Center ( 广州 国际 会展 中心 ) in Pazhou, from the older complex in Liuhua. The GICEC is served by two stations on Line 8 and three stations on Tram Line THZ1. Since the 104th session, the Canton Fair has been arranged in three phases instead of two phases.

Local products


Automobile manufacturer GAC Group headquartered in Guangzhou GAC cars -- 2018 North American International Auto Show (41255545421).jpg
Automobile manufacturer GAC Group headquartered in Guangzhou

Business Environment

Guangzhou is a hub for international businesses. According to an article by China Briefing, over 30,000 foreign-invested companies had settled in Guangzhou by 2018, including 297 Fortune Global 500 companies with projects and 120 Fortune Global 500 companies with headquarters or regional headquarters in the city. [141]


Historical population
1950 [142] 2,567,645    
1960 [142] 3,683,104+43.4%
1970 [142] 4,185,363+13.6%
1980 [142] 5,018,638+19.9%
1990 [142] 5,942,534+18.4%
2000 [142] 9,943,000+67.3%
2002 [143] 10,106,229+1.6%
2005 [144] 9,496,800−6.0%
2006 [144] 9,966,600+4.9%
2007 [144] 10,530,100+5.7%
2008 [144] 11,153,400+5.9%
2009 [144] 11,869,700+6.4%
2010 [142] 12,701,948+7.0%
2011 [145] 12,751,400+0.4%
2012 [145] 12,832,900+0.6%
2013 [145] 12,926,800+0.7%
2014 [145] 13,080,500+1.2%
Population size may be affected by changes to administrative divisions.

The 2010 census found Guangzhou's population to be 12.78 million. As of 2014, it was estimated at 13,080,500, [146] [145] with 11,264,800 urban residents. [147] Its population density is thus around 1,800 people per km2. The built-up area of the Guangzhou proper connects directly to several other cities. The built-up area of the Pearl River Delta Economic Zone covers around 17,573 km2 (6,785 sq mi) and has been estimated to house 22 million people, including Guangzhou's nine urban districts, Shenzhen (5.36m), Dongguan (3.22m), Zhongshan (3.12m), most of Foshan (2.2m), Jiangmen (1.82m), Zhuhai (890k), and Huizhou's Huiyang District (760k).[ citation needed ] The total population of this agglomeration is over 28 million after including the population of the adjacent Hong Kong Special Administrative Region.[ citation needed ] The area's fast-growing economy and high demand for labor has produced a huge "floating population" of migrant workers; thus, up to 10 million migrants reside in the area least six months each year.[ citation needed ] In 2008, about five million of Guangzhou's permanent residents were hukouless migrants. [148]

Ethnicity and language

Most of Guangzhou's population is Han Chinese. Almost all Cantonese people speak Cantonese as their first language, [150] while most migrants speak forms of Mandarin. [148] In 2010, each language was the native tongue of roughly half of the city's population, [151] although minor but substantial numbers speak other varieties as well.[ citation needed ] In 2018, He Huifeng of the South China Morning Post stated that younger residents have increasingly favored using Mandarin instead of Cantonese in their daily lives, causing their Cantonese-speaking grandparents and parents to use Mandarin to communicate with them. He Huifeng stated that factors included local authorities discouraging the use of Cantonese in schools and the rise in prestige of Mandarin-speaking Shenzhen. [152] Jinan University released a survey result of the Guangzhou youths born in the year 2000 or after that were part of this educational study showed that 69% could still speak and understand Cantonese, 20% can understand Cantonese, but unable to speak it, and 11% completely had no knowledge of Cantonese. Jinan University's study of these Guangzhou youths also indicated when it came to the daily recreational use of Cantonese, roughly 40%-50% of them participated in these recreational functions with the usage of Cantonese with 51.4% of them in mobile games, 47% in Social Platforms, 44.1% in TV shows, and 39.8% in Books and Newspapers. Despite some decline in the use of Cantonese, it is faring better in survival, popularity, and prestige than other Chinese languages due to the historical pride in the language and culture, as well as the wide popularity and availability of mainstream Cantonese entertainment, which encourages locals to retain the Cantonese language. [153] [154] As of the 2020s, additional renewed efforts were introduced to preserve the local Cantonese language and culture with some limited Cantonese language classes now being taught in some schools as well as hosting Cantonese appreciation cultural events along with hosting activities that cater to the local Cantonese culture and language as well as many local Cantonese speaking families are now placing much stronger emphasis on their children to speak Cantonese to preserve the culture and language. In a 2018 report study by Shan Yunming and Li Sheng, the report showed that 90% of people living in Guangzhou are bilingual in both Cantonese and Mandarin, though fluency will vary depending on if they are locally born to the city and the surrounding Guangdong province or migrants from other provinces, which shows how much importance the Cantonese language still has in the city despite the strict policy rules from the government to be using Mandarin as the country's official language. [155] [156] Guangzhou has an even more unbalanced gender ratio than the rest of the country. While most areas of China have 112–120 boys per 100 girls, the Guangdong province that houses Guangzhou has more than 130 boys for every 100 girls. [157] [158] [159]

Guangzhou also possesses a large resident population who are Hakka people. There are seven administrative districts in Guangzhou with a considerable Hakka population: Zengcheng District, Huadu District, Conghua District, Baiyun District, Tianhe District, Yuexiu District and Panyu District. It is estimated that in Zengcheng district and Huadu district of Guangzhou, Hakka speakers account for about 40 percent and a third of the district's population. [160] [161]

Recent years have seen a huge influx of migrants, with up to 30 million additional migrants living in the Guangzhou area for at least six months out of every year with the majority being female migrants and many becoming local Guangzhou people. This huge influx of people from other areas, called the floating population, is due to the city's fast-growing economy and high labor demands. Guangzhou Mayor Wan Qingliang told an urban planning seminar that Guangzhou is facing a very serious population problem stating that, while the city had 10.33 million registered residents at the time with targets and scales of land use based on this number, the city actually had a population with migrants of nearly 15 million. According to the Guangzhou Academy of Social Sciences researcher Peng Peng, the city is almost at its maximum capacity of just 15 million, which means the city is facing a great strain, mostly due to a high population of unregistered people. [157]

According to the 2000 National Census, marriage is one of the top two reasons for permanent migration and is particularly important for women as 29.3% of the permanent female migrants migrate for marriage [Liang et al.,2004]. Many of the female economic migrants marry men from Guangzhou in hopes of a better life. [162] but like elsewhere in the People's Republic of China, the household registration system (hukou) limits migrants' access to residences, educational institutions and other public benefits. It has been noted that many women end up in prostitution. [163] In May 2014, legally employed migrants in Guangzhou were permitted to receive a hukou card allowing them to marry and obtain permission for their pregnancies in the city, rather than having to return to their official hometowns as previously. [164]

Historically, the Cantonese people have made up a sizable part of the 19th- and 20th-century Chinese diaspora; in fact, many overseas Chinese have ties to Guangzhou. This is particularly true in the United States, [165] Canada, [166] and Australia.

Demographically, the only significant immigration into China has been by overseas Chinese, but Guangzhou sees many foreign tourists, workers, and residents from the usual locations such as the United States. Notably, it is also home to thousands of African immigrants, including people from Nigeria, Somalia, Angola and the Democratic Republic of Congo. [167]

Metropolitan area

The encompassing metropolitan area was estimated by the OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development) to have, as of 2010, a population of 25 million. [168] [169]

Development of Guangzhou

ScienceDirect provides a report on their website of the development of Guangzhou from 1990 until 2020, showing how in 1990, the developed residential districts were almost exclusively concentrated in a small part of western Guangzhou whereas other parts of Guangzhou had a smaller limited amount of developed residential communities being overwhelmingly surrounded by agricultural and forest lands. However, from 2005 until 2020, other parts of the city eventually began to develop more so residential communities and in the 2020 map report, it showed fully developed residential communities going from west to east of the city whereas the very southern part and large portions of northern Guangzhou still remain mainly agricultural and forest lands with very limited developed residential communities. [170] [171]


Urban mass transit

Guangzhou Metro Guangzhou Metro L6 Stock For Xunfenggang Station 20201209.jpg
Guangzhou Metro

When the first line of the Guangzhou Metro opened in 1997, Guangzhou was the fourth city in Mainland China to have an underground railway system, behind Beijing, Tianjin, and Shanghai. Currently the metro network is made up of sixteen lines, covering a total length of 652.81 km (405.64 mi). [172] A long-term plan is to make the city's metro system expand to over 500 km (310 mi) by 2020 with 15 lines in operation. In addition to the metro system there is also the Haizhu Tram line which opened on December 31, 2014. [173]

The Guangzhou Bus Rapid Transit (GBRT) system which was introduced in 2010 along Zhongshan Road. It has several connections to the metro and is the world's 2nd-largest bus rapid transit system with 1,000,000 passenger trips daily. [174] It handles 26,900 pphpd during the peak hour a capacity second only to the TransMilenio BRT system in Bogota. [175] The system averages one bus every 10 seconds or 350 per hour in a single direction and contains the world's longest BRT stations—around 260 m (850 ft) including bridges.

Motor transport

Buses in Guangzhou Guangzhou BRT Corridor.jpg
Buses in Guangzhou

In the 19th century, the city already had over 600 long, straight streets; these were mostly paved but still very narrow. [41] In June 1919, work began on demolishing the city wall to make way for wider streets and the development of tramways. The demolition took three years in total. [176]

In 2009, it was reported that all 9,424 buses and 17,695 taxis in Guangzhou would be operating on LPG-fuel by 2010 to promote clean energy for transport and improve the environment ahead of the 2010 Asian Games which were held in the city. [177] At present[ when? ], Guangzhou is the city that uses the most LPG-fueled vehicles in the world, and at the end of 2006, 6,500 buses and 16,000 taxis were using LPG, taking up 85 percent of all buses and taxis.[ citation needed ]

Effective January 1, 2007, the municipal government banned motorcycles in Guangdong's urban areas. Motorcycles found violating the ban are confiscated. [178] The Guangzhou traffic bureau claimed to have reported reduced traffic problems and accidents in the downtown area since the ban. [179]


Baiyun International Airport Terminal 2 Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport T2.jpg
Baiyun International Airport Terminal 2

Guangzhou's main airport is the Baiyun International Airport in Baiyun District; it opened on August 5, 2004. [180] This airport is the second busiest airport in terms of traffic movements in China. It replaced the old Baiyun International Airport, which was very close to the city center but failed to meet the city's rapidly growing air traffic demand. The old Baiyun International Airport was in operation for 72 years. Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport now has three runways, with two more planned. [181] Terminal 2 opened on April 26, 2018. [182] Another airport located in Zengcheng District is under planning. [183]

Guangzhou is served by Hong Kong International Airport; ticketed passengers can take ferries from the Lianhuashan Ferry Terminal and Nansha Ferry Port in Nansha District to the HKIA Skypier. [184] There are also coach bus services connecting Guangzhou with HKIA. [185]


Guangzhou is the terminus of the Beijing–Guangzhou, Guangzhou–Shenzhen, Guangzhou–Maoming and Guangzhou–Meizhou–Shantou conventional speed railways. In late 2009, the Wuhan–Guangzhou high-speed railway started service, with multiple unit trains covering 980 km (608.94 mi) at a top speed of 320 km/h (199 mph). In December 2014, the Guiyang–Guangzhou high-speed railway and Nanning-Guangzhou railway began service with trains running at top speeds of 250 km/h (155 mph) and 200 km/h (124 mph), respectively. [186] The Guangdong Through Train departs from the Guangzhou East railway station and arrives at the Hung Hom station in Kowloon, Hong Kong. The route is approximately 182 km (113 mi) in length and the ride takes less than two hours. Frequent coach services are also provided with coaches departing every day from different locations (mostly major hotels) around the city. A number of regional railways radiating from Guangzhou started operating such as the Guangzhou–Zhuhai intercity railway and the Guangzhou-Foshan-Zhaoqing intercity railway.

Water transport

There are daily high-speed catamaran services between Nansha Ferry Terminal and Lianhua Shan Ferry Terminal in Guangzhou and the Hong Kong China Ferry Terminal, as well as between Nansha Ferry Terminal and Macau Ferry Pier in Hong Kong.


Guangzhou Opera House Guangzhou Opera House(Near).JPG
Guangzhou Opera House

Guangzhou‘s culture is mainly Cantonese culture, which is a subset of the larger "Southern" or the "Lingnan" culture, followed by Hakka culture. [187] Notable aspects of Cantonese cultural heritage include:

The Guangzhou Opera House & Symphony Orchestra also perform classical Western music and Chinese compositions in their style. Cantonese music is a traditional style of Chinese instrumental music, while Cantopop is the local form of pop music and rock-and-roll which developed from neighboring Hong Kong.

It is worth noting that Cantonese language, Cantonese cuisine and Cantonese opera are the shared culture of the whole Guangdong region, not just the important cultural components of Guangzhou city. With a population of diverse background, the culture of Guangzhou also includes other categories, such as Hakka culture and language.

In the Hakka people inhabited areas of Guangzhou, Hakka culture has been well developed and preserved, and in the long history, the integration of Canton culture and Hakka culture has derived new cultural characteristics. Zengcheng, Guangzhou is a district with a history of more than 1800 years, with the harmonious coexistence of Canton culture and Hakka culture, the derived food culture has not only the non-heritage food such as Zhengguo Wonton, Lanxi Rice Noodle, and Goose Soup, but also the special food such as Yuecun Dace Fish Skin, Paitan Roasted Chicken, and Shitan Whole Cattle Banquet. [190]


Before the postmodern era, Guangzhou had about 124 religious pavilions, halls, and temples. [41] Today, in addition to the Buddhist Association, Guangzhou also has a Taoist Association, a Jewish community, [191] [192] as well as a history with Christianity, reintroduced to China by colonial powers.[ clarification needed ]


Taoism and Chinese folk religion are still represented at a few of the city's temples. Among the most important is the Temple of the Five Immortals, dedicated to the Five Immortals credited with introducing rice cultivation at the foundation of the city. The five rams they rode were supposed to have turned into stones upon their departure and gave the city several of its nicknames. [193] However, the temple has not been restored as a Taoist temple status yet. Other famous temples include the City God Temple of Guangzhou and Sanyuan Palace. During the Cultural Revolution, all Taoist temples and shrines were practically destroyed or damaged by the red guards. Only a handful of them like Sanyuan Palace were restored during the 1980s. Guangzhou, like most of southern China, is also notably observant and continues the practice of Chinese ancestral worship during major festive occasions like the Qing Ming Festival and Zhong Yuan Festival.


Buddhism is the most prominent religion in Guangzhou. [194] The Zhizhi Temple was founded in AD 233 from the estate of a Wu official; it is said to comprise the residence of Zhao Jiande, the last of the Nanyue kings, and has been known as the Guangxiao Temple ("Temple of Bright Filial Piety") since the Ming dynasty. The Buddhist missionary monk, Bodhidharma is traditionally said to have visited Panyu during the Liu Song or Liang dynasty (5th or 6th century). Around AD 520, Emperor Wu of the Liang ordered the construction of the Baozhuangyan Temple and the Xilai Monastery to store the relics of Cambodian Buddhist saints which had been brought to the city and to house the monks beginning to assemble there. The Baozhuangyan is now known as the Temple of the Six Banyan Trees, after a famous poem composed by Su Shi after a visit during the Northern Song.[ citation needed ] The Xilai Monastery was renamed as the Hualin Temple ("Flowery Forest Temple") after its reconstruction during the Qing dynasty.

The temples were badly damaged by both the Republican campaign to "Promote Education with Temple Property" ( ) and the PRC's Cultural Revolution but have been renovated since the opening up that began in the 1980s. The Ocean Banner Temple on Henan Island, once famous in the west as the only tourist spot in Guangzhou accessible to foreigners, has been reopened as the Hoi Tong Monastery.


Nestorian Christians first arrived in China via the overland Silk Road, but suffered during Emperor Wuzong's 845 persecution and were essentially extinct by the year 1000. [195] [ specify ] The Qing-era ban on foreigners limited missionaries until it was abolished following the First Opium War, although the Protestant Robert Morrison was able to perform some work through his service with the British factory. The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Guangzhou is housed at Guangzhou's Sacred Heart Cathedral, known locally as the "Stone House". A Gothic Revival edifice which was built by hand from 1861 to 1888 under French direction, its original Latin and French stained-glass windows were destroyed during the wars and amid the Cultural Revolution; they have since been replaced by English ones. The Canton Christian College (1888) and Hackett Medical College for Women (1902) were both founded by missionaries and now form part of Guangzhou's Lingnan University. Since the opening up of China in the 1980s, there has been renewed interest in Christianity, but Guangzhou maintains pressure on underground churches which avoid registration with government officials. [196] The Catholic archbishop Dominic Tang was imprisoned without trial for 22 years; however, his present successor is recognized by both the Vatican and China's Patriotic Church.


Guangzhou has had ties with the Islamic world since the Tang dynasty. [197] Relations were often strained: Arab and Persian pirates sacked the city on October 30, 758; the port was subsequently closed for fifty years. [54] [55] [56] [57] [58] Their presence came to an end under the revenge of Chinese rebel Huang Chao in 878, along with that of the Jews, Christians, [59] [60] [61] and Parsis. [62] [63] Nowadays, the city is home to halal restaurants. [198]


Guangdong Olympic Stadium Aerial View, Central Stadium, Guangdong Olympic Sports Center 20230604-A.jpg
Guangdong Olympic Stadium

The 11,468 seat Guangzhou Gymnasium was a 2019 FIBA Basketball World Cup venue. [199]

From November 12 to 27, 2010, Guangzhou hosted the 16th Asian Games. The same year, it hosted the first Asian Para Games from December 12 to 19. Combined, these were the major sporting events the city ever hosted. [200]

Tianhe Stadium Aerial View, Tianhe Stadium 20230520-B.jpg
Tianhe Stadium

Guangzhou also hosted the following major sporting events:

Current professional sports clubs based in Guangzhou include:

Soccer China League One 2nd Guangzhou Huadu Stadium
Esports (Overwatch) Overwatch League 1st Guangzhou Charge Tianhe Gymnasium
Basketball Chinese Basketball Association 1st Guangzhou Loong Lions Tianhe Gymnasium
Baseball China Baseball League 1st Guangdong Leopards Tianhe Sports Center baseball field
Guangzhou Baoneng Qoros Arena Aerial View, Guangzhou Baoneng Qoros Arena 20230604.jpg
Guangzhou Baoneng Qoros Arena

In the 2010s, Guangzhou became a Chinese soccer powerhouse, having won eight national titles between 2011 and 2019. The team has also won the AFC Champions League in 2013 and 2015. The club has competed at the 2013 and 2015 FIFA Club World Cup, where it lost 3–0 in the semifinal stage to the 2012–13 UEFA Champions League winners FC Bayern Munich and the 2014–15 UEFA Champions League winners FC Barcelona, respectively. [201]


In the 1990s the local press prolifically published reviews of restaurants in Guangzhou. The local newspapers introduced lifestyle pages and relied on infotainment to encourage the purchase of a daily newspaper. [202]


Eight Views

Canton Tower Canton Tower 2017-10-02.jpg
Canton Tower

The Eight Views of Ram City are Guangzhou's eight most famous tourist attractions. They have varied over time since the Song dynasty, with some being named or demoted by emperors. The following modern list was chosen through public appraisal in 2011:[ citation needed ]

Bombax ceiba, Guangzhou's official flower Bombax ceiba 2.jpg
Bombax ceiba , Guangzhou's official flower

Parks and gardens

  • Baiyun Mountain
  • Nansha Wetland Park
  • People's Park
  • South China Botanical Garden
  • Yuexiu Park
  • Guangdong Tree Park
  • Dongshanhu Park (东山湖公园; 東山湖公園)
  • Liuhuahu Park (流花湖公园; 流花湖公園)
  • Liwanhu Park (荔湾湖公园; 荔灣湖公園)
  • Luhu Park (麓湖公园; 麓湖公園)
  • Martyrs' Park (广州起义烈士陵园; 廣州起義烈士陵園)
  • Pearl River Park (珠江公园; 珠江公園)
  • Yuntai Garden (云台花园; 雲臺花園)
  • Shimen National Forest Park(石门国家森林公园; 石門國家森林公園)
  • Haizhu Lake Park(海珠湖公园; 海珠湖公園)

Tourist attractions

Sun Yat sen Memorial Hall Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall Guangzhou.jpg
Sun Yat sen Memorial Hall

Guangzhou attracts more than 223 million visitors each year, and the total revenue of the tourism exceeded 400 billion in 2018. [204] There are many tourist attractions, including:

Pedestrian streets

In every district there are many shopping areas where people can walk on the sidewalks; however most of them are not set as pedestrian streets.

Shangxiajiu Pedestrian Street Shangxiajiu Pedestrian Street 2.jpg
Shangxiajiu Pedestrian Street

The popular pedestrian streets are:

Malls and shopping centers

There are many malls and shopping centers in Guangzhou. The majority of the new malls are located in the Tianhe district.

Aerial view of Parc Central Mall Aerial View, Parc Central, Guangzhou 20230520-A.jpg
Aerial view of Parc Central Mall

Major buildings


Guangzhou has two local radio stations: the provincial Radio Guangdong and the municipal Radio Guangzhou. Together they broadcast in more than a dozen channels. The primary language of both stations is Cantonese. Traditionally only one channel of Radio Guangdong is dedicated to Mandarin Chinese. However, in recent years there has been an increase in Mandarin programs on most Cantonese channels. Radio stations from cities around Guangzhou mainly broadcast in Cantonese and can be received in different parts of the city, depending on the radio stations' locations and transmission power. The Beijing-based China National Radio also broadcasts Mandarin programs in the city. Radio Guangdong has a 30-minute weekly English programs, Guangdong Today, which is broadcast globally through the World Radio Network. Daily English news programs are also broadcast by Radio Guangdong.

Guangzhou has some of the most notable Chinese-language newspapers and magazines in mainland China, most of which are published by three major newspaper groups in the city, the Guangzhou Daily Press Group, Nanfang Press Corporation, and the Yangcheng Evening News Group. The two leading newspapers of the city are Guangzhou Daily and Southern Metropolis Daily . The former, with a circulation of 1.8 million, has been China's most successful newspaper for 14 years in terms of advertising revenue, while Southern Metropolis Daily is considered one of the most liberal newspapers in mainland China. In addition to Guangzhou's Chinese-language publications, there are a few English magazines and newspapers. The most successful is That's Guangzhou, which started more than a decade ago and has since blossomed into That's PRD , producing expatriate magazines in Beijing and Shanghai as well. It also produces In the Red.

Education and research

Sun Yat-sen University Guangzhou South Campus, Sun Yat-sen University.jpg
Sun Yat-sen University
South China Agricultural University Hua Nan Nong Ye Da Xue Xing Zheng Ban Gong Lou Bei Mian  - panoramio.jpg
South China Agricultural University
Guangzhou Library Guangzhou Library 2013.11.15 18-30-36.jpg
Guangzhou Library

The Guangzhou Higher Education Mega Center, also known as Guangzhou University Town ( 广州 大学 ), is a large tertiary education complex located in the southeast suburbs of Guangzhou. It occupies the entirety of Xiaoguwei Island in Panyu District, covering an area of about 18 km2 (7 sq mi). The complex accommodates campuses from ten higher education institutions and can eventually accommodate up to 200,000 students, 20,000 teachers, and 50,000 staff. [205]

As of June 2023, Guangzhou hosts 84 institutions of higher education (excluding adult colleges), ranking 2nd nationwide after Beijing and 1st in South China region. [206] The city has many highly ranked educational institutions, with seven universities listed in 147 National Key Universities under the Double First-Class Construction, ranking fourth nationwide (after Beijing, Shanghai and Nanjing). Guangzhou is also an important hub for international students and it was ranked 110th globally by the QS Best Student Cities Rankings in 2023. [207]

Guangzhou is a major Asia-Pacific R&D hub, ranking 8th globally, 4th in the Asia & Oceania regions after (Beijing, Shanghai and Nanjing) and 1st in South Central China region. [208]

The Guangzhou Higher Education Mega Center's higher education campuses are as follows:

Guangzhou's other fully accredited and degree-granting universities and colleges include:

The two main comprehensive libraries are Guangzhou Library and Sun Yat-sen Library of Guangdong Province. Guangzhou Library is a public library in Guangzhou. The library has moved to a new building in Zhujiang New Town, which fully opened on June 23, 2013. [209] Sun Yat-sen Library of Guangdong Province has the largest collection of ancient books in Southern China. [210]

Notable people

International relations

Twin towns and sister cities

Consulates General/consulates

As of April 2023, Guangzhou hosts 68 foreign consulates-general/consulates, excluding the Hong Kong and Macao trade office, making it one of the major cities to host more than 50 foreign representatives in China after Beijing and Shanghai. [23] [24]

See also


  1. The other seven are the cuisines of Anhui, Fujian, Hunan, Jiangsu, Shandong, Sichuan and Zhejiang. [189]

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