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Guangzhou


Guangzhou is also known by its alternative English name, Canton.
Guangzhou is the capital and sub-provincial city of Guangdong Province in the southern part of the Peoples Republic of China. The city is also known by an alternative English name, Canton. It is a port on the Pearl River, navigable to the South China Sea, and is located about 120 km (74 miles) northwest of Hong Kong. The official estimate of the metro's population at the end of 2006 was 9.8 million.

Guangzhou has a humid subtropical climate influenced by the Asian monsoon. Summers are wet with high temperatures and a high humidity index. Winters are mild, dry and sunny. Annual average temperature is 21.8C.

The first known city at the site of Guangzhou was Panyu, founded in 214 BC. The city has been continuously occupied since that time. The Portuguese were the first Europeans to arrive to the city by sea, establishing a monopoly on the external trade out of the harbor by 1511. They were later expelled from their settlements in Guangzhou, but instead granted use of Macau as a trade base with the city in 1557.

Guangzhou's main airport is the new Baiyun International airport which opened in August 2004. Guangzhou is well connected to Hong Kong by train, coach and ferry. It takes less than two hours to go by train to Hong Kong. There are daily ferry services to Hong Kong including an overnight steamer service, which takes eight hours, as well as high-speed catamaran service which takes three hours. The catamaran service to Hong Kong takes 75 minutes.

There are many tourist attractions around the city which includes: the Temple of the Six Banyan Trees, Shishi Sacred Heart Cathedral, Temple of Bright Filial Piety and Shamian Island.

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