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-- Temples & Buildings
Latest Updated by 2003-09-16 16:31:48

1. There are four nationally famous Buddhist monasteries in Guangzhou: Guangxiao Temple, Liurong (Six-Banyan) Temple, Hualin Temple and Haichuang Temple

2. Twelve bridges & Zhujiang (Pearl River) Tunnel

Renmin Bridge, Jiefang Bridge, Zhujiang Bridge, Hedong Bridge, Jiangwan Bridge, Haiyin Bridge, Guangzhou Bridge, Dongpu Bridge, Humen Bridge, Panyu Bridge, Luoxi Bridge, and Yajisha Bridge (a landmark of modern Guangzhou)

3. Modern buildings are a new look of the 2200-year-old city, such as Tianhe Sports Center, China Mayors' Mansion, Foreign Friendship Store, Teem Plaza, Guangzhou Book Shopping Center, CITIC Plaza and World Trade Center around Dongzhan Square. Other land marks are:

  • Olympic Sports Center (for the 9th National Sports Games) is located at Huangcun Village in Dongpu Township, Guangzhou Municipality. Covering an area of one million sq meters, it can hold 80 012 viewers. It has 8 permanent parking lots plus additional 40 000 sq meter parking area, where together 8 000 cars can park at the same time. The center is elegantly designed and well built. The 9th national Sports Games was held here in 2001 and it attracted thousands of visitors.
  • 80-story-tall Zhongxin Tower is a symbol of modern Guangzhou, which is as high as 391 meters. On the top of it, visitors can obtain a clear bird-eye-view of the modern high-rises in the northern part of Tianhe District, the newly merged downtown area of Guangzhou.

The local travel agencies offer a lot of tourist routes in and around the city, such as Famous-Eight-Views Tour, One-Day Tour in Guangzhou, Evening Cruise on the Pearl River and Lingnan Garden Tour. In 1999, Guangzhou was put on the list of China's top tourist cities. The rich tourist resources, modern tourism facilities and well-organized services together make it an unforgettable place of interests. Guangzhou owes its charm much to its natural settings, folklores, customs and ways of life. Traditional heritage and modern civilization make a striking contrast here, yet they complement each other. And obviously, historic and cultural relics in Guangzhou are now beaming new charms as the municipal government of Guangzhou puts historical heritage protection on the top of its agenda. But it was not until recent years that the locals realized that these old legacies are priceless treasures. Billions of yuan have been invested in recent years, not only on saving the relics themselves, but also on the surrounding environment. Famous sites like the Museum of Nanyue King's Mausoleum, Guangxiao Temple, Temple of South China Sea God, Flower Pagoda, Whampoa Military Academy, Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall. Buildings along Commercial Beijing Lu, Shangjiu Lu and Xiajiulu Walks have all been renovated over the past two years. A new public square entitled Chenjiaci Square was completed in 1999 at a cost of 145 million yuan near the Ancestral Temple of the Chen Family, which is located in Liwan District in the western part of Guangzhou, a relic under state protection and known for its well decorated ancient architecture.

With the city developing at high speed, plans have been made to preserve and protect more relics, some of which are still squeezed and obscured in the local neighborhoods. For instance, the remnants of the Palace and Royal Garden of the Nanyue Kingdom, which can be traced back to 300 BC, have not been fully excavated yet. After the site was first discovered in 1995, the municipal government managed to stop all real estate development nearby and is planning to spend about one million yuan to fully explore the site. If done, it should be put on the list of the World Cultural Heritages.

So far, Guangzhou tourism has kept booming and become one of the indispensable pillar industries. In 1999, the total income of Guangzhou tourism industry amounted to 36.346 billion RMB yuan, an increase of 12.36% over the previous year. In 2000, Guangzhou City took about 10% of China's total income of tourism, reaching 41.5 72 billion yuan and earning 1.506 billion US dollars. A record high in history again! It is estimated that, in the trend of globalization, cultural industry is becoming more and more important, eventually one of the pillars of China's national economy. Guangzhou is to follow the trend.

Editor: Catherine

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By:Jin Huikang Source:South CN
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