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LEFT: The Metropolis of Guangzhou at night TOP: The Sacred Heart Cathedral ABOVE: Buddha Statue, LiuRong Temple Guangzhou is capital of Guang-dong Province in southeastern China. An important trading port, the city lies on the Pearl River, about 120km inland from Hong Kong. The city is the third largest in China, with a population of around 10 million. The city's origins date back to 214 BC; trade with India and Rome was established as early as the second century AD. Formerly known in the West as Canton, Guangzhou was for hundreds of years the only port in China open to European merchants, who HABARIINSPIRATION One of China's largest, most vibrant and historic cities, served by KQ six times per week. By Gavin Thomas GUANGZHOU 24 01 02 03 msafi ri established themselves on Shamian Island, where their graceful old colonial houses can still be seen today. The city has experienced a massive economic boom in recent decades, thanks to its proximity to Hong Kong and strategic location on the Pearl River Delta. Principal language is Cantonese. A few people speak English. The city boasts a modern metro system, as well as fast train and ferry connections to Hong Kong. The city is also home to a rich array of tourist attractions, including Shamian Island, the Sacred Heart Cathedral, and the famous Temple of the Six Banyan Trees. Sun Yatsen, the fi rst president of the Republic of China, was born just outside Guangzhou. Guangzhou is also home to the impressive Guangzhou Olympic Stadium opened in 2001. Despite the name, however, the city didn't host any events at the 2008 Olympics. 10 04 06 05 08 09 TOUCHDOWN 07 The sparkling new GUANGZHOU BAIYUN INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT, opened in 2004, is 28km from downtown Guangzhou. A taxi into town will cost around US$ 10. Alternatively, there are frequent airport express buses, covering most parts of the city along seven routes. CONNECTIONS CHARLES BOWMAN/ PHOTOLIBRARY