China. Yes, I went to China to see the enormous interior fair in Canton, but I did also manage to check out some more stuff. Here is a short report from Guangzhou and tomorrow we will see more from Shanghai. All in collaboration with Svensk Kinesiska Resebyrån.
I spent two nights in Guangzhou. Depending on how you count, this could be seen as the largest city in China. If you check Wikipedia, the city center has officially five or twelve million inhabitants.
We flew to HongKong and took a highspeed train for an hour.
Passing though cities after cities.
Top speed is about 300 km per hour so it is fast, fast, fast.
We stayed at this futuristic looking hotel, just near the fair ground. The main reason for us to go here was the Canton fair.
The city feels very contemporary and modern. We were here very briefly but they have some contemporary buildings by Zaha Hadid. There are older neighbourhoods. Guangzhou might be better known as the city Canton (as with the name in the fair) and this was the only place westerners were allowed to trade with the Chinese. Far away from Beijing. The river in the background is Pearl River.
Going out in Guangzhou was extremely easy. We were adviced by cool trend guy Filip to go to Party Pier. This is an old freight spot turned into a hub for dining and fun. It’s kind of a computer game. You wander around, get bonuses and wonder when you should kill the draging. But there are things here in every one’s taste. Crafted beer, Michelin dining and just relaxed and fun.
We even managed to sneak in to a fashion party…
One stop we really wanted to see was the island of Shamian. This is the only place where westerners were allowed to settle, so a lot of the architecture is “European”. An important place during the Opium Wars.
A very friendly neighbourhood with plenty of cafées and restaurants.
Guangzhou hosts one of the world’s tallest building. Canton Tower briefly held the titel of being the world’s tallest building. It is now the second tallest tower in the world. Regardless of where on the top-five-list it is – it’s worth a stop. 604 meters tall and with the observation deck on 450 meters.
You get a massive view of the city.
On the observation deck you can go on “bubble cars” outside of the building. There was even one of those carnival rides with “free fall” on the top. And no… I did not do that. I have no vertigo or fear of heights but I do have my limits…
So the “bubble cars” actually run on the facade of the building.
It is soooooooo high up…
This is how close I got to the new opera house by Zaha Hadid, based just next to the contemporary building of Guangzhou. Looked nice and something I will have to check out next time I am here.
So after three days and two nights in Guangzhou we took the highspeed train to Shanghai. More on that tomorrow.