Guangdong Province is located in the southeast of China’s mainland where it occupies an area of 178,000 square kilometres. Its many islands add a further 1,600 square kilometres. To the south it meets the warm waters of the South China Sea along a coastline of 3,368 km. The Tropic of Cancer runs through the center of this low latitude province where the Pearl River, at 2,122 km the third longest in China, meets the sea. The fertile Pearl River Delta is well-known as a land rich in fish, rice and delicious food.
Most areas enjoy a subtropical monsoon climate with adequate rainfall, long summers and warm winters. Annual precipitation averages 1,336 mm while annual evaporation averages 1,100 mm so Guangdong is moist. Its average annual temperature is 22 deg C and it averages 1,828 hours of sunshine a year. Guangdong is a green place where plants grow vigorously all the year round There are 40 forest parks and 30 nature reserves designated at provincial level.
Guangdong is now seeing more and more of its cities designated as First Class Excellent Tourist Cities for the list now includes Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Zhuhai, Zhaoqing, Zhongshan, Foshan, Jiangmen, Shantou, Huizhou and Hainan. In particular Zhongshan and Hainan rank first and second among the cities at prefecture and county levels to have been awarded this honor. Development of the tourism triangle based on Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macao has now taken off. The State Council has approved the introduction of a 144-hour visa endorsement service in 10 cities in the Zhujiang River Delta and Shantou City. Guangdong Province is home of the Cantonese language that is widely spoken in Hong Kong.