24 Hours in Guangzhou

Trip to Guangzhou in Turkish Airlines Business Class & Guangzhou to Mumbai in Qatar Airways & Etihad A380 First Class

A few months ago, I came across some tips on Flyertalk about a cheap business class fare from Vilnius to Toronto on Turkish Airlines and since I wanted to earn Elite status in the airlines' Miles & Smiles program by the end of this year, I did not hesitate and booked the flight. Unfortunately, a schedule change forced me to cancel the flight and look for another option. I had some miles left on my American Airlines Advantage account so I thought I could redeem them flying from Guangzhou to Mumbai in first class. Flying from Mumbai to Bangkok was easy since Air India flies direct between these two cities. After thoroughly planning the trip, I ended up buying an open jaw ticket in Turkish Airlines business class, from Stockholm to Guangzhou and back from Bangkok to Stockholm. It actually turned out perfectly well as I was able to fly Qatar Airways A380 first class from Guangzhou to Doha and then to Abu Dhabi. In Abu Dhabi, I was able to visit the newly opened Etihad First Class Lounge & Spa and from Abu Dhabi, I flew on Etihad's A380 to Mumbai. It was 8 flights in 6 days which was really tiring but who cares when you're flying in first and business class 😉

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Selfie with the Sacred Heart Cathedral

First visit: November 2016
Photography by: Arthur Jeciel

Last week, I was in Guangzhou for the first time and had just about 24 hours since my flight landed Wednesday evening and my flight to Doha was scheduled at 12 midnight the following day. It was not my first time to visit China though as I have been to Beijing, Xi'an, Sanya, Guilin and Yangshuo in the past. Guangzhou, known as the "Flower City" is indeed a very beautiful city and has a lot to offer to its visitors. Since I had limited time, I was not able to visit the Shamian Island, South China Botanical Garden and Baiyun Mountain among others although I guess there's always another time. Here are some of my travel tips in case you will be visiting Guangzhou in the future.

Sun Yat Sen Memorial Hall: Completed in 1931, make sure you visit this famous octagon-shaped building when in Guangzhou. Entrance fee is 10 Yuan.

Canton Tower: This is no doubt the city's most iconic landmark. Offering unobstructed views of the city from the 488M Look Out, this is a must visit when in Guangzhou. Entrance fee is 228 Yuan

Museum of the Mausoleum of the Nanyue King: Aside from the 2,000 year old tomb, the most popular item to see is an elaborate burial suit comprised of 2,291 pieces of jade and connected by silk. Entrance fee is 12 Yuan.

Temple of the Six Banyan Trees: This Buddhist temple with its beautiful design is not to be missed. Entrance fee is 5 Yuan.

Sacred Heart Cathedral: Finding a Catholic church in China is not that easy so I was really glad to have visited it. Unfortunately, it was closed during my visit but I was still able to admire its beauty from the outside.

Visiting a local market

Taking the public transportation: I was only able to take the metro and it was fairly organized.

Enjoying the local food: Known as the birthplace of Cantonese food, make sure you enjoy the local food like the popular dumplings, siu mais, congee, etc. when in Guangzhou.

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