Browse for shopping bargains and explore ancient sites at one of the oldest roads in Guangzhou.
Lively, crowded and fast-paced, Beijing Road is a busy commercial street in central Guangzhou. It has been the city’s main thoroughfare throughout much of its history.
In this car-free area there are dozens of shops to explore, including designer boutiques, jewelers, bookstores, supermarkets and stores that sell locally produced goods such as embroidery, sculptures and herbal teas. Haggle hard in the independent stores, as there are plenty of bargains to be found.
Take a detour down some of the side streets off Beijing Road. Here you will find a number of stores packed with fake designer goods and clothing shops selling inexpensive dresses. Later, cool down by walking through the water archway, two parallel lines of small jets that shoot out water to create an arch.
Beijing Road isn’t just a destination for shopping; there are numerous historic sights to see as well. On and around this famous strip you will find some excavated and preserved sites. Highlights include the Site of Nanyue Kingdom Palace and the Site of the Dockyard of Qin Dynasty.
Look down on the past at the street’s underground archaeological sites. You can see through glass panels at your feet and discover remnants of roads that date back to the Song Dynasty (960–1279).
Beijing Road is a magnet for hawkers, who try to persuade shoppers to look at their fake designers wares. They can be persistent at times, so if you’re not interested in what they are selling, be polite but firm in your refusal.
Take some time out from all the walking and shopping and enjoy a meal at one of the many cafés and restaurants along the strip. You will find anything from local Cantonese delicacies to cuisines from other countries.
If it’s atmosphere you’re after, then come at night when the street is lit up by neon. After hours, Beijing Road is even livelier than it is in the daylight.
Beijing Road Pedestrian Street is in central Guangzhou and is served by the subway.