Shantou is situated in the southeastern corner of East Asia, on the west coast of the Pacific Ocean. Boarding on the South Sea, the city is one of the most important open-to-the-world harbors both in the Guangdong Province and in China. As one of the five special economic zones of China, it uses its convenient geographic location to its advantage and has accepted many foreign investments. It currently has economic relations with 165 countries. Over 50 multinational corporations and 11 of the world's top 500 enterprises have investments in Shantou, giving the city the seventh best rate of commerce among all cities in China.
Long coastal lines and a pleasant subtropical marine climate provide the city with many charming tourist attractions. Beautiful mountains, natural beaches, and exquisite islands, together with the marine scenery that surrounds the harbor, form a breathtaking environment that is especially attractive to those who want to escape the busy life. The locals use their rich seaside resources to set up many resort villages that provide sound facilities and services for the tourists. In addition, the Tropic of Cancer traverses the city, making it a wonderful place to feel the instant alternation of spring and summer in China.
Shantou is one of the primary hometowns of Chinese who are living abroad. Shantou natives are scattered around the globe and can be found in over 40 regions and countries of the world. Those who have left the city often invest in their hometown and come back to work together with the locals. The exotic culture that they bring back to the city is then mixed with the traditional culture, forming a particular local flavor. The Chao music is well known for its dulcet melody, varying rhythms and peculiar instruments while the Chao opera is renowned for its beautiful aria and various playing roles. The Chao cuisine is one branch of the famous Cantonese cuisines. Most of the dishes are cooked with seafood and various seasonings. They taste fresh, and are light but delicious. Enjoying a cup of Gongfu tea is also popular and has become one of the most welcomed forms of nightlife among the locals.
Transportation in Shantou is quite efficient as it is easily accessible by land, sea, or air. Shantou Harbor has cargo ships that connect to over 210 harbors around the world. It also has passenger ships that sail to many of China's port cities, such as Hong Kong, Guangzhou and Hainan Island. Two of China's main railway lines traverse Shantou, making it very convenient to get to other cities by train, including Beijing, Chengdu, Shenzhen, Xiamen and Qingdao. Shantou Waisha Airport is located 13 kilometers (eight miles) northeast of the center-city area and is a hub for 40 airlines connecting with many cities both in China and other countries including Thailand and Singapore. In addition, highways in the city are also well developed and provide easy access to Shenzhen and Xiamen. It takes only about three hours to reach the either of these cities (by long distance bus).
The hotel industry is flourishing in Shantou. You can easily find hotels and hostels of all standards throughout the city. Moreover, the rates are reasonable and relatively lower than other coastal cities in southern China. There are also various recreational places in the city. Malls, cinemas, restaurants, clubs, bars and coffee houses can be easily found everywhere in the city, which will certainly make your travel more interesting and convenient.
Universities in Shantou