One of the most important and profitable tourist cities in China, Shenzhen, whose annual foreign exchange income of tourism reaches 5.118 billion yuan, is regarded as the capital of Chinese theme parks and tourism innovation. There are more than 100 scenic spots around the city, including man-made theme parks, natural ecological parks, coastal resorts, shopping plazas and historic sites. With sea, land and air checkpoints, Shenzhen has a safe, quick and convenient tourist transport network. Eating, living, traveling, shopping and recreating in Shenzhen are made easy and fun with ample tourism infrastructure and products and food from around the world. Shenzhen is a coastal cosmopolitan tourist city. Visitors can travel freely and quickly within a one-hour drive and appreciate the modern young city’s beauty and ethos. The city annually receives 12.2 million overnight visitors and 252 million people who enter and leave through the checkpoints.
Theme Park Capital
Shenzhen is famed as a theme park capital. Window of the World, Splendid China•China Folk Culture Villages, Happy Valley and OCT East theme parks are the epitome of blending Chinese and world cultures.
Covering an area of nearly 9 square kilometers, Overseas Chinese Town East (OCT East) is elaborately designed by OCT Group. It is the first domestic ecotourism demonstration area integrating themed parks, towns, hotels, performances, a Buddhist temple and two mountain golf courses. OCT East is one of China’s first 5A-rated scenic spots, the highest national level.
Window of the World
As one of the must-go scenic spots in Shenzhen, Window of the World is a fantastic park with vivid replicas of the world’s wonders, historical heritages and famous scenic sites.
Located between Shenzhen Overseas Chinese Town’s theme park cluster and Binhai Boulevard, OCT Bay is a commercial leisure center with multiple businesses such as retail, catering, entertainment, office, apartment and hotel.
A large modern theme park, Happy Valley boasts a large number of breathtaking and exciting amusements and advanced facilities. As one of the best theme parks in China, it has seen branches set up in Beijing, Chengdu and Shanghai.
Shenzhen Safari Park
Shenzhen is home to the first safari park in China. There are more than 300 kinds of wild animals, 10,000 in total, from all over the earth. Many of them are world-famous rare and protected animals in China.
As one of the 10 famous scenic spots in Shenzhen, Evergreen Resort is a farm featuring an environmental protection theme and covers an area of about 200,000 square meters. A song about the resort was composed by renowned songwriter Qiao Yu and was sung by singer Na Ying at the Spring Festival Gala on CCTV in 1997.
Shenzhen Ocean World
Located in the east of Shenzhen, the attraction covers an area of nearly 100,000 square meters. The marine-based theme park offers a large quantity of entertaining performances.
Shenzhen has a large number of coastal scenic spots, including Shenzhen Bay, Mangrove Nature Reserve and a 15-kilometer coastal leisure corridor in the west, with Zhongying Street, Dameisha and Xiaomeisha beaches, Ocean World and Dapeng Peninsula in the east. The coastline along the Dapeng Peninsula was named one of the eight most beautiful coasts in China by Chinese National Geography magazine. Shenzhen has more than 20 public beaches, some of which are linked by seaside walkways, and 51 islands. The OCT Bay is dubbed the “cultural lounge of Shenzhen” and the Shekou International Cruise Homeport has become a new tourist attraction.
OCT East, a national ecological resort occupying about 9 square kilometers, aims to provide visitors with an opportunity to escape from the bustle of city life and return to nature. Tourists can also feel tranquility at other local spots, including Fairy Lake Botanical Garden, 943.7-meter Wutong Mountain, the mountainside Hongfa Temple, Waterlands Resort, Guangming Farm, Qiniang Mountain and Fenghuang Mountain.
Shenzhen is not only a modern city with a history of reform, but also a city with an ancient civilization. New Stone Age ruins found in Xiantouling in Dapeng indicate that humans inhabited the area at least 6,700 years ago. There are 51 city-level protected sites containing cultural relics around Shenzhen, including the well-known Zhongying Street, Dapeng Fortress, Qing Dynasty Hakka architecture, Song Dynasty Young Emperor’s Tomb and Chiwan Battery.
Chiwan Goddess Temple
The magnificent temple was built in the Song Dynasty. It has undergone several repairs during the Ming and Qing dynasties. The temple is an important station of the Maritime Silk Road in history.
Zhongying Street is located in Shatoujiao Subdistrict in Yantian District. It is 250 meters long and lies at the border of Shenzhen and Hong Kong. There are eight boundary monuments in the street. It is a base of patriotism education in Guangdong Province.
Intangible Cultural Legacies
Shenzhen’s list of intangible cultural legacies include 164 items covering categories ranging from folk culture, folk music, traditional dance, folk arts and folk customs to traditional craftsmanship and traditional medicine. Among these items, seven are State-level intangible cultural legacies: fish-lantern dance of Shatoujiao, traditional orthopedic skills of the Guo family of Pingle, Chinese kylin dance of Dachuankeng, Qixing lion dance of Songgang, kylin dance of Yongshengtang of Bantian, traditional ancestor-worshipping ceremony of Xiasha Village and Jia School’s Acupressure Therapy.
Tourism and Cultural Festivals
There are more than 170 tourism-related and cultural festivals in Shenzhen, including Shenzhen Golden Coast Tourism Festival, Shenzhen Dapeng International Outdoor Carnival and Window of the World International Beer Festival. The Happy Valley International Magic Festival is one of the biggest magic festivals in the world, attracting top magicians from around the globe every year.
Shenzhen Nanshan Litchi Cultural and Tourism Festival
Since its launch in 1998, the festival has become one of the most historical tourism festivals in Shenzhen. A litchi-themed event, it is held from June to July every year. Various activities including economic and trade events as well as cultural activities are held.
Shenzhen Golden Coast Tourism Festival
Held in Yantian District from September to December every year, the festival includes events like Shenzhen (Dameisha) Beach Music Festival, Shenzhen Dameisha International Kite Festival and China (Shenzhen) International Boat Show.
Shenzhen Dapeng International Outdoor Carnival
Held from August to November each year, the carnival is comprised of 10 activities and outdoor competitions, which attract tens of thousands of outdoor culture enthusiasts and nature lovers from Shenzhen and neighboring cities. The carnival has become a grand annual outdoor event of China.
Window of the World International Beer Festival
Held at Window of the World in July-August annually since 1996, the theme park festival features delicious, frothy beer from around the world.
Happy Valley International Magic Festival
A big event that attracts magicians from around the globe, the magic festival has been held annually since 2000 at Happy Valley theme park in Shenzhen.
Shenzhen is renowned as a shopping paradise, with abundant choices of international luxury goods and local products at hand. The culturally diverse city offers a variety of foods, from Western cuisines to local street food. Shenzhen has a developed retail network.
Food and Bars
Shenzhen serves some of the best food in the world. With thousands of eateries, visitors can taste delicious food representing countless cultures. Bar streets, including those in Shekou Sea World, Window of the World and Coco Park, all provide good choices for pubgoers at night.
Shenzhen’s famous native produce and foods include Shajing oysters, Nanshan litchi, Xixiang shrimp, Fuyong fish, Nan’ao abalone, Longgang chicken, Pingshan orange, Xili mango, Songgang preserved duck, Gongming roast goose, Guangming young pigeon and more than 150 kinds of medicinal herbs.