Guide to Nightlife
For the most up-to-date listings on all of Guangzhou's nightspots, pick up a copy of "that's PRD" magazine upon your arrival in Guangzhou (the PRD stands for Pearl River Delta). This English language publication includes extensive reviews of nightclubs, bars, restaurants and other activities available in Guangzhou, as well as articles, news about coming events and classified advertisements... You can get a free copy in various locations around the city, such as the Garden Hotel concierge desk, or the Cave Bar... The magazine also covers nearby Pearl River Delta cities of Dongguan and Shenzhen.
Eating Great Food: Eating
Most evenings for me were spent wandering around Shamian Island. I was amazed at the "Animal" Restaurants. Each one seemed to have their specialty in a cage outside the restaurant so that passers-by could see what they had to offer. Rodents and other small animals seemed very popular. I never did try any of them though...I based that decision on price as the caged animals were quite expensive compared to my noodle dishes that I enjoyed.
Dress Code: Regular to dress up depended on the class of the restaurant.....I don't have a photo so I just putting up a photo of one of the Temples that I took a photo of and don't know the name of.
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Bar Street is a place in the Fangcun District of Guangzhou which is across the Pearl River from the main part of Guangzhou. Here, there are many modern bars, karaoke clubs and good restaurants, some of which have seafood, hotpot or barbecue... The bars typically offer different kinds of beer to drink. Seems the Chinese aren't too big on mixed drinks or wine... And there is usually entertainment such as the singer you see in the photo here... When I came into the bar with Xiujuan, I was the only Westerner there and after she finished a song she made a point of welcoming me. Of course, it was all in Cantonese so I didn't understand it, but Xiujuan translated for me...
Xiujuan took me out dancing one night at a Guangzhou disco... I'm not sure the name of the place or exactly where it was though I believe it was somewhere between Ouzhuang and Dongshan... It was a large club with multiple floors and the level we went to had a bar serving mostly just beer and a fairly good sized dance floor... It was pretty crowded and lots of people dancing... Guangzhou disco dancing is usually a bit formal and prescribed in comparison with Western styles but there are some girls and guys that know how to get crazy once in a while...! We danced to several songs, most of them contemporary disco music with a techno accentuation, and had a great time!
Romantic Nights in Guangzhou.
I don't know anyone besides myself that understands Guangzhou as a deeply romantic city, but in my perception it is very much so... Of course, romance doesn't come from outside, it comes from within the hearts of lovers, transforming everything around...! And so, I must say that Guangzhou is filled with amorous interludes, flirtations, and incandescent passions...
Shown in the image here, dapples of red and blue radiance along the Pearl River...
After dark, at the south end of Beijing Lu, the road meets up with Yanjiang Lu and the broad dark expanse of the Zhu Jiang just beyond, a popular place for couples to enjoy a riverside stroll... If you want a spot with more bustle than the softly serene Shamian Dao, this is the perfect option... There are also nearby restaurants and an ice cream shop...
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Fangcun District: BaieTan Bar Street
Baietan Bar Street has a lot of bars/clubs/pubs/cafe bars. On the subway get off at Fangcun Station and follow the signs for Baietan Bar Street. 5-10 min walk from the station. The street is also right on the Pearl River there is dudes right on the walkway that charge 10RMB for a picture with the Pearl River night bakground.
Dress Code: No dress code in most places but some there is i believe.
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Tang Club: Live Music Club
This is a fun club, not really much of a dance club but there is a smaller dance floor with people always on it. Depending on where your table is there is a minimum you must spend per person. 500rmb in front of the dance floor and 600rmb one level higher by the bar, i am not sure about the prices higher up, there are 2 more levels. I dont think it gets much more than that. There is also a live band every night playing from 9:45pm, they play for 30 mins then take about 15-20 minute break. I am not sure where the band is from but there are 2 chinese people in the band and aswell 3 black people (2 girls, 1 female) They play some older hits and a few newer songs aswell. Oh and i am not quite sure how much you have to spend but after a few drinks and a bottle of JW, they were bringing us Heineken on the house, i believe it is normal as long as you spend a certain amount of money.
Dress Code: Casual is okay, its more of the classier bars in GZ but as long as you look on the better side of the table then its all okay.
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Karaoke night is the classic stereotypical entertainment activity on the Pacific rim, and at some point you will likely get invited to one of these venues... I was fortunate to have some friends who are actively involved in the emerging Chinese gay community and went out for a night of karaoke singing with them... Chinese gay men love to sing love songs by female vocalists and they have a natural talent for imitating their sound that is uncanny! As for me, I sang a rendition of Sonny and Cher's "I Got You, Babe" with Xiujuan...
Spelland Spa, probably the largest one in town: Don't miss the local SPA
Salt bath, aromatherapy,manicure, foot massage, Chinese medicine cupping and others you name it, with mutipul choices for associated facilities that you can get relaxed and entertained.
P.S. Some items are with an extra five percent for service.
Shopping/Dinning/Riverwalk: Beijing Road
You get off the Hai Zhu Guang Chang Metro station, and you experience the high density of population doing shopping, dinning, clubing, selling, and etc. Then you walk down the street along the pearl river. You can see the spectacular lights of the tall buildings, boats, bridges. On your side of the road, you can see very old colonio buildings. Finally, you look for Beijing Road, on your left. Walk along the road until you get to the busy street of Beijing Road.
Please view pictures at travelouge " Night at Guangzhou "
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Different Shops in different areas in GZ......: Disco, Bars etc etc....................
Despite a new entrance and a new bar area, African Bar unfortunately has the same d¨¦cor and now looks so last millennium. Even so, there were still a good handful of locals enjoying a few beach-buster summer sounds although not a single gwei lo (foreigner) in sight. H/H 7-9pm.
Daily 7pm-2am. No cards. 2/F, Zi Dong Hua Bldg, 707 Dong Feng Dong Lu (8762 3336, 8762 4348)
An Quan Di Dai
Is there really enough musical talent to go around all the local show bars these days? You probably wouldn't think so after a night here. A seemingly endless parade of talentless dollies and overdressed giffords churning out half hearted covers of Cantonese classics. I'll get my coat. H/H 8-10pm.
Daily 9pm-2am. 228 Hai Zhu Bei Lu (8318 1743)
Getting quieter all the time as those in the know migrate to Fishman's Port. It is such a shame that the non-hetero bunch are such a fickle lot when it comes to choosing their bar allegiances. Open from 8:00p.m. till 2:00a.m.
Daily 6pm-2am. No cards. 42 Ti Yu Dong Lu (8551 9496)
Auckland Romantic Bar
Not sure what is so romantic, maybe the dark corners and reasonable prices. Live music Th.Fr.Sa. 10.30-11.30pm.
Daily 7.30pm-3am. No cards. G/F, Yue Kang Ge, Wu Yang Xin Cheng (8737 4999)
Here you can do a pub crawl without leaving the premises. 5 bars surround a stage which has live entertainment starting at 21:30. Expensive drinks and no cocktails.
Daily 7.30pm-3am. All cards. 1/F, Garden Hotel, Huan Shi Dong Lu (8333 8989 ext 3733)
Cosy is about the most polite we can be about these bars. Luckily they are off the beaten track and do not get busy enough for the cramped conditions to be a problem.
Daily 10am-2am. No cards. 1) 54 Nan Hua Xi Lu (8437 5640); 2) 2/F, 72 Jiao Yu Lu (8334 0996); 3) 1/F, 4 Yu Xian Fang, Wen Ming Lu (8337 7689); 4) 2/F, 204 Guang Fu Zhong Lu (8190 7151); 5) 72 Cao Ji Zhi Jie, Shi Ba Pu Bei Lu (8139 3370); 6) 6 Deng Men Xi Jie, Dong Chuan Lu (8381 2007)
Dress Code: Hill Bar Blues
Lots and lots of Blues, with great Reggae tunes and Latino beats mixed with top Chinese songs. The Hill Bar can make a truly enjoyable and unique experience in Guangzhou. 7pm-2am daily. Great atmosphere, good food. Info. Call Thomas at 135 0001 1859
Daily 11am-2am. No cards. 367 Huan Shi Dong Lu (8333 3998 ext 3913)
A hot hopping place with a pop-rock band on the first floor. On the second floor there is a huge disco with a real pumping beat and next door a dance floor for erotic dancers. 18 KO rooms. This is so hot it costs RMB30 on Fri & Sat, RMB10 Sun-Thur , ladies free. Snacks and beer normal prices.
Daily 8pm-2am. Dong Jun Plaza, 836 Dong Feng Dong Lu (8765 1867)
Definitely a place to make you feel your age. Plenty of teen 'casherette' types in orange moon-boots, followed by little troupes of tops-off boys. A bit like the cheeleaders in Daria, sad in retrospect but laff-out-loud funny at the time.
Daily 8pm-2am. 5/F, Liwan Plaza, Chang Shou Lu (8139 1118)
It's a multifunctional and multi-style bar. A western restaurant with light pop by day and a night club at well, night.
Daily 11am-1am. No cards. H 17, 183, Yan Jiang Lu. (8333 5326)
Redecorated, very light and open. New resident band "Star Beat" from the Philippines, playing Pop & Rock every Sunday-Thursday, 8.45pm-12.30am, Friday and Saturday, 9.15pm-1.15am. H/H: 4-8pm. The bartender won the world title. A good choice if you want to try some of the best cocktails in Guangzhou.
Sun-Thur 4pm-1am, Fri-Sat 4pm-2am. All cards. Lobby, Holiday Inn, Overseas Chinese Village, 28 Guang Ming Lu, Huan Shi Dong Lu, (8776 6999 ext 3124)
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Lucy's: Good beer
This restaurant has an American diner feel with the menu consisting of decent burgers, buffalo wings, Tex-Mex dishes, sandwiches, pizza etc plus some good deserts such as apple pie and ice cream. Beer is RMB12 for half a pint and RMB20 for a pint. The waitresses are very friendly and speak English. As well as the western food, they also offer many Chinese dishes. You can sit inside but they also have many tables outside in the park underneath trees.
Night Cruise on the Pearl River
If there is anything that you can enjoy, it is a night cruise on the Pearl River. While it is not as interesting during the day, the many bridges that cross the river are lit by neon lights at night. There are several night cruises available. Some are just cruises and others provide tea and Chinese delicacies. I highly recommend any of them.
The particular one I took was selected by my relatives and was excellent. We had unfortunately had a very lovely dinner at one of the restaurants nearby before we cruised. We rode the cruise down to Shaiman Island before back tracking to the boat dock.
Dress Code: Casual dress is accepted. Usually more conservative dress is appropriate.
Cave Bar: Cave Bar
The Cave Bar is a nightclub and restaurant located near the Garden Hotel on Huanshi Donglu... They have reasonable approximations of Western favorites such as quesadillas and potato skins, though they don't quite match up to the authentic originals... Drinks are expensive here as the place caters mainly to expats... There's a latin music and salsa dancing party one night per week... They also have a foosball table and when I was there, I got into a fiercely competitive match with an incensed Russian gangster who played his heart out -- final score was Russian gangster 9, Guantanamera 10! Guantanamera wins by one point!!
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