Country: China
Currency: Renminbi (RMB)
Peak Season: April-May, September-October
Shoulder Season: June-August, November
Median Temperature: 22.50 C / 72.5 F
Main Languages: Mandarin, Cantonese, English
Primary Modes of Transportation: Metro, bus, mini-bus, tourist bus, taxi
Recommended Duration of Stay: 3 days
Recommended Pocket Money: $80.00/day
Tourist Passes: n/a
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One of China’s most productive, most industrial cities is Shenzhen. Like many coastal cities pressed along the Pearl River Delta of the Guangdong Province, the city is a major financial and international trade hub, evidenced by the audacity and bustle of the Port of Shenzhen, where the city’s manufactured goods get shipped internationally. Shenzhen ranks as the 5th most populous city in the world according to a 2010 consensus. And, despite being populated to a crawl, Shenzhen is home to the wealthiest individuals (or just the highest concentration of successful industries), boasting the highest GDP per capita of any city in the world. The fact it being a Special Economic Zone speaks volumes about how it drastically shaped China’s economy for the good. The tourism industry is, for a fact, overshadowed by the industrial sector. However, international tourists are far from discouraged to go here: Shenzhen has at least 20 public parks, immaculate beaches, tons of shopping malls and dining establishments, and not mention well-preserved cultural landmarks.

Hong Kong and Shenzhen have deep economic consanguinity. And traveling vice versa to both cities is easily accomplishable via train or domestic flights. While Hong Kong may offer a sultrier treat, Shenzhen specializes in cheaper food and products and a foyer of large, inexpensive theme parks for the budget-conscious. The moment you enter Shenzhen, you’ll understand why the Chinese are so good at what they do: whether it’s business, leisure or just good food, Shenzhen won’t disappoint nor wallop your wallet.

Packing List

  • Essential medication and toiletries; the tap water is not advisable to drink, but some merchants pass off bottled tap water as clean—pack your own refreshments or buy from grocers
  • An address book and a map—if you’re planning to start a retail business or planning to expand your portfolio, Shenzhen’s businesspeople are looking for offshore companions
  • Lots of luggage bags—retail goods are sold at factory prices; consider finding a freight forwarder, there’s no other place where electronics are sold at a fraction of the market cost
  • Lots of luggage bags—retail goods are sold at factory prices; consider finding a freight forwarder, there’s no other place where electronics are sold at a fraction of the market cost
  • A phrasebook to get along with locals and businessmen much better; Shenzhen is one of the places where English is almost unintelligible, especially in the manufacturing districts

Things to Do

  • Visiting the country’s famous theme Park—Window of the World—featuring miniature (and uncanny) reproductions of the world’s top attractions, including the Eiffel Tower and the Giza Pyramids
  • Tagging along kids and friends to Happy Valley of Shenzhen, an amusement park stretching across 86 acres and divided into nine distinct, themed areas, each featuring a unique set of rides and entertainment
  • Becoming emancipated in the ethnic diversity of culture and entertainment offered by China Folk Culture Village, featuring 24 distinct villages sprawled across 50 acres
  • Heading over to Overseas Chinese Town East to catch Ecoventure Valley an interesting retreat into nature with a twist of musical performances; and Tea Stream Resort Valley, offering an educational tour of tea’ s influence in Chinese culture
  • Going to Lizhi Gongyuan (Lychee Park) for a brisk detachment from the urban jungle; here you’ll find verdant flora and a good number of exquisite plants, plus the added tranquility of Lake Lihu

DON'T

  • Bring too much with you on the streets; Shenzhen is notorious for being the nesting ground of pickpockets
  • Get annoyed with all the pushing and jostling; every station in the city is busy, so get used to it
  • Pass up on all the great shopping deals; forge an acquaintance/partnership with factory owners
  • Buy impulsively since items are competitively sold; a little canvassing and a ton of bargaining can do wonders for your budget
  • Constrain your budget to just shopping; Shenzhen has a smorgasbord of inexpensive food venues