Canton Tower

As the tallest landmark in Guangzhou, the Canton Tower is a must-visit spot for tourists visiting the city. The tower is home to the world’s highest revolving restaurant and Ferris wheel, as well as a vertical drop ride and a skywalk, perfect for thrill-seeking visitors.

However, the majority of locals and tourists prefer to take photos at the plaza beneath the tower or ascend to the observation deck for a panoramic view of Guangzhou.

I found that the view from within the Canton Tower isn’t as expansive as one might imagine. The visibility from both the indoor observation decks on the 107th and 108th floors, and the outdoor viewing platform at the top of the tower, is often obstructed by the tower’s slanted columns, resulting in a mediocre viewing experience.

The best viewpoint is the outdoor platform at 488 meters on the antenna mast, offering an unobstructed view. However, given its expensive admission fee, it’s better suited for those with ample budgets or photography enthusiasts.

Canton Tower

Apart from sightseeing, many people come here for the extreme entertainment offerings. The “Sky Drop” at the top of the tower may not have as much of a drop as similar rides in amusement parks, but its high location makes it even more thrilling.

The skywalk is between the 33rd and 67th floors. The glass-bottomed walkway spirals around the outside of the tower, providing a strong sense of being suspended in the air and requiring a fair amount of courage to walk.

The Ferris wheel at the top of the tower is a more relaxing attraction. Located at the very top of the Canton Tower, the viewing cabin is not obstructed by the tower’s columns, offering excellent views.

There are several dining options within the Canton Tower. The most popular are the revolving restaurants on the 105th and 106th floors. The cost of a meal includes free access to the observation decks on the 107th and 108th floors.

Some meal deals also include a ticket for the Ferris wheel, which is a better value than buying an observation deck ticket separately. The 105th floor features French cuisine, and the 106th floor offers a Mediterranean buffet. The food is decent, but the ambiance is the main draw.

If you just want to view the Canton Tower or take photos, the plaza at the base of the tower is sufficient, and there’s no need to buy a ticket to go up. If you want a complete view of the Canton Tower, I recommend visiting Haixinsha Island, Haixin Bridge, or Guangzhou Bridge.

However, since the views from Haixin Bridge encompass both sides of the river, it often requires queuing for access on holidays and weekends. If you don’t want to queue, the nearby Guangzhou Bridge offers an equally impressive view and allows you to include Haixin Bridge in your photos.

Canton Tower

Getting there:

Take the APM line or Line 3 to Canton Tower Metro Station, and the tower is within walking distance.

Ticket prices:

During my visit, the admission fee to go from 433 meters to 488 meters ranged from 150 to 328 yuan for sightseeing tickets and 268 to 398 yuan for sightseeing and entertainment combo tickets.

Most visitors opt for the combo tickets. Prices are similar across platforms, and discounts are available for seniors, military personnel, and children. Check the ticket details for more information.

Tips to Avoid Pitfalls

Canton Tower

  1. Remember to carry your ID as it’s needed to buy and collect tickets.
  2. If you have booked tickets on a group purchase website, be aware of inclement weather like sudden rain. The scenic area will notify you of any temporary closures or re-openings through text messages. So, if needed, refund or rebook your tickets promptly.
  3. The viewing hall inside the tower and the outdoor platform at 450 meters have issues with glass reflection and obstructions from the tower columns. The night view may not live up to your expectations. Only the platform at 488 meters offers a better view, but the ticket is a bit expensive, around 400 yuan.
  4. During holidays, the time spent in line from the tower entrance to the viewing platform can account for more than half of your total visit. The long wait can potentially dampen your sightseeing mood.
  5. An undercover visit in mid-August revealed that around 10:10 p.m., there were still about 100 people in line for the Ferris wheel. A complete rotation on the Ferris wheel takes about 20 minutes, so waiting to ride could cause you to miss the last subway home. This is not very convenient for visitors relying on public transportation.
  6. The romantic aspect of the Ferris wheel is non-existent during peak tourist times. Each Ferris wheel cabin is arranged to seat six people, not all of whom know each other. Any couples among them might feel awkward, making it unsuitable for dating.
  7. The most cost-effective way to enjoy the Guangzhou Tower is to view the night scene from outside. Most visitors prefer this method and don’t see the need to spend money to go up the tower.

Itinerary

For those who prefer outdoor scenery, any clear evening is a perfect time to visit. You can witness the beautiful sunset and enjoy the nighttime view of the Guangzhou Tower.

Around 6:30 to 7:00 PM in the summer, the sunset glow is especially beautiful, and as night gradually falls, you can see the lights of the buildings on both banks of the river.

For those who want to enjoy the view from the tower, we recommend choosing a non-holiday time slot between 6:00 PM and 8:00 PM. This allows you to experience the transition from sunset to nightfall from the top of the tower.

If you don’t want to miss the distant view and the tower climb, we suggest climbing the tower in the evening.

After enjoying the night view from above, descend the tower and walk to the nearby river to appreciate the panoramic view of the Guangzhou Tower. To enjoy the night view of both banks, you can also take a Pearl River night cruise.

Aside from sightseeing, if you also want to experience the tower’s dining and amusement facilities, it’s recommended to reserve a day. You can follow the order of “Sky Ladder – Rotating Restaurant – Ferris Wheel – Sky Speed” for an immersive experience.

Detailed Guide

Canton Tower

  1. Be cautious when admiring the scenery from Guangzhou Bridge’s pedestrian walkway, as delivery bikes often pass through. It’s advised not to linger too long for safety reasons.
  2. Different tickets offer various inclusions. Be sure to thoroughly check whether the observatory or other attractions you want to visit are included before purchasing.
  3. According to the Guangzhou Tower’s public account, the Ferris wheel undergoes maintenance every Monday before 3:00 PM, and the Sky Drop ride every Monday before 12:00 PM. Both attractions are serviced simultaneously on the last Monday of each month before 5:00 PM. Avoid these times if you wish to experience these attractions.
  4. Be prepared for possible queues when visiting on holidays or weekends. Patience is key to ensure a pleasant experience.
  5. Guests who dine at the revolving buffet restaurant on the 106th floor or the French dinner at the Lotus revolving restaurant on the 105th floor generally get free access to the Baiyun Starry Sky Observatory on the 107th and 108th floors. Sometimes, a Ferris Wheel ticket is also included, offering better value than buying individual tickets. However, avoid using the Ferris Wheel ticket on its maintenance days to ensure you don’t miss out.
  6. For the two restaurants on the 105th and 106th floors, you need to contact the restaurant for a reservation and voucher redemption a day in advance, regardless of where you buy the tickets. Otherwise, you may encounter situations where group coupons are not available on the same day, and the on-site ticket price may vary, requiring additional charges. When making a reservation, you can request a window seat for a better view.
  7. It’s recommended to visit the restaurants on the 105th and 106th floors during the day, as the daylight offers clearer views of the cityscape and a better photo-taking experience. The evening views can be less distinct due to insufficient lighting.
  8. It takes about two hours for the revolving restaurant to complete one rotation, but the movement is so subtle, you’ll hardly notice it.
  9. We recommend visiting the “Speedy Clouds” attraction during the day. The clarity of the daytime view makes the experience even more exhilarating.
  10. The “Aerial Walk on the Clouds Ladder,” also known as the “Spiderman Plank Walk,” consists of over a thousand steps and takes about 40-60 minutes to complete. It’s not recommended for those with a fear of heights.
  11. If you feel uncomfortable while experiencing the Cloud Ladder, you can ask the guide for assistance at any time and exit via the elevator on each level.
  12. Recommended photo spots include: Exit A of the Haixinsha Metro Station, by the river; the Haixinsha West District Pier; the Haixin Bridge; the Huacheng Square; and the Guangzhou Bridge.

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