Canton Tower

Guangzhou, China

As far as towers go, Canton Tower in Guangzhou is considered the second tallest in the world, with a total height of almost 1980 ft. It is an architectural beauty that was designed with the inspiration from the shape of a woman’s body, which is the reason for its alias ‘Supermodel’.

Built in 2010, it gained much fame during the 2010 Asian Games, which were held in Guangzhou. It has a hyperboloid or twisted structure with 37 floors and a rotating ride at the top with crystal compartments for visitors viewing pleasure. The design is reinforced to endure both intense earthquakes and devastating typhoons.

The tower is a constant presence looming in the skyline for Guangzhou’s population. It is located a solitary km from the central part of town and stands overlooking the Pearl river, near its banks. Easy access is ensured by the dedicated Canton Tower station on subway line 3, public buses 468/262/11/tour line 1 and also a tram which goes there from Wanghsengwei subway station. You can always just point to the domineering presence when looking for directions for this attraction!

Visiting hours start at 09:30 and last till 22:30, giving visitors plenty of time to look around, so it is never too overrun. Beware, though, the late opening timings on Monday for the main attractions, that are 15:00 (Bubble Tram) and 12:00 (Sky Drop); and 17:00 (for both) on the last Monday in any month. The entrance fee is RMB150 standard and RMB75 for kids measuring 3.9-4.9 ft. Attraction-specific prices are RMB180 per go. Value deals are available on tickets though; make sure to check these if you’re in the mood for a deep exploration.

Canton Tower houses 5 areas from Zone A, at the bottom to Zone E at the very top, with regular and super-speed lifts handling passenger traffic. Once you get past ticketing and the expansive lobby, you will reach Zone A aka The Shop n Savor area where there are mementoes and gift items for purchase along with cafes and restaurants with calming views of the Pearl River in the distance.

Next is the Envision Zone B with 4D and 3D cinemas. In the Discover Zone (C), there are more sightseeing opportunities. Relax Zone D is just spiral staircase and glass and a test of one’s bravery in getting past all that!

The last area, Zone E, is the Observe Zone. Over here, visitors can experience the Sky Drop, a 1,591 ft high straight jump, the highest in the world, that is sure to delight thrill seekers! The Bubble Tram ride is another in-demand attraction that rotates on a horizontal axis but gives panoramic views of all of Guangzhou. For curious guests, there is an information Hall, called the Engineering Marvel, that lays out the intricacies of the structure and the protection measures instilled within. There are three observation decks, including the 488 Lookout and spending an evening here, with the city changing colors before your eyes, is nothing short of magical.

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