Guangdong Province in south China, with an abbreviation of "Yue", sprawls on the shore of the South China Sea and is in close proximity to the Hong Kong and Macao special administrative regions. Covering an area of 180000 square kilometers, the province has a topography that slants downwards form north to south. Two thirds of the region is hilly land, and the Pearl River Delta and Chaoshan Plain make up the rest. The population of the province is 86 million. The inhabitants include the people of Han, and 41 minority ethnic groups of Yao, Zhuang, Hui, Manchu, She, and others.
Guangdong has the largest population of returned overseas Chinese, with Chaozhou, Shanzhou, Meizhou and Guangzhou areas as their major homes. Guangzhou city is the provincial capital.
Guangdong has a quite long history. As early as more than 1000000 years ago, Qujiang Maba Man, the middle Paleolithic primitive man, once lived in present Guangdong's territory. Many significant events in Chinese modern history happened here.
Magnificent landscape, unique scenes and long and splendid Lingnan Culture—these wealth of tourist resources have given rise to a comprehensive tourist industry in Guangdong. Xiqiao, Dinghu and Danxia mountains are national key scenic resorts. Other scenic spots and sites of historical interest include Yuexiu Park, Botanical Garden of South China, Ancestral Temple of Chen Family, Memorial Hall of Dr Sun Yat-sen. Additionally, "Splendid China", a garden of miniature Chinese landscapes, China Folk Culture Village and the Peak of Window of the World are newly developed tourist attractions.
Yuexiu Park in downtown Guangzhou has an area of 84 hectares, consisting of three artificial lakes and seven hillocks. Main scenic spots include Zhenhai Tower and the Sculpture of the Five Rams. Zhentai Tower is a 28-meter-high Ming building, with five storeys' and commanding a bird's-eye view of the whole city. The Sculpture of the Five Rams is the symbol of Guangzhou. According to an ancient and beautiful legend, Guangzhou is also called "City of Rams", or "Goat City."
Ancestral Temple of the Chen Family
Sitting on the seventh Zhongshan Road in Gaungzhou, it was first built in 1890, or the 16th year of Qing Emperor Gaungxu's reign, with donations of members of the Chen Family who lived in the 72 counties of Guangdong Province. Covering a total area of 1.3 hectares, it is the largest, best preserved and best decorated ancient cluster of architectures in Guangdong. The temple is especially renowned for its beautiful decorations, including wood carving, brick carving, pottery carving, stone carving, lime carving, brass and cast iron, grotto, New Year painting, and so on. These artistic decorations are important cultural relics of which possessing great value of history, art, culture and science.
Seven-Star Rocks Scenic Area
Lying in the northern suburbs of Zhaoqing, the area consists of seven rocks, eight caves, five lakes and six hillocks, having a total area of 7.6 square kilometers and more than 80 scenic spots. The seven razor-sharp monoliths covered with lush vegetation stand by a lake, like the Big Dipper in the firmament, hence the name. The picturesque landscape wins it the reputation of "Owning both the limestone peaks in Guilin and the water of West Lake in Hangzhou".
Ancestral Temple in Foshan
The original temple was first built during the Northern Song Dynasty, and has been developed through renovations and additions in the Ming and Qing dynasties. Therefore, it is called the Ancestral Temple owing to its long history. The temple covers an area of 3500 square meters. Its buildings and beautiful decorations such as pottery, brick, and stone carving are important cultural and art relics.
With its clear springs, grotesque rocks, fantastic crags and bizarre caves, Xiqiao Mountain in Nanhai, 29 square kilometers in area, has long been reputed as "the Green Emerald". There are many attractions in the mountain area but the surroundings of Baiyun Cave in the western part capture the essence of all beautiful scenery.