During the Qing Dynasty Guanlan was one of the four major market towns in the Shenzhen area the others were Dongmen, Qingping in Shajing and Shatoujiao.

Guanlan Laojie near the Guanlan River in Bao’an is now the best preserved of the four. The Guanlan River was an important route between Guangdong and Hong Kong and Guanlan was a trading hub for Huizhou, Dongguan and Bao’an counties.

The district extends over ten streets of old shops and Cantonese style watchtowers left over from the period of wars between the Cantonese and the Hakka. Perhaps the most famous street is Maibu Street which once had some 30 shops selling Chinese and Hong Kong textiles.

Like many remnant towns of the area, the architecture is a mixture of Cantonese and 19th century western styles. The arcades remind us of those that used to be common in Guangzhou but have now largely disappeared. Local historians tell us that the arcades in Guanlan are older than those in Guangzhou. The Bao’an District government has placed Guanlan Laojie on its architectural protection list.

Address: Guanlan Road, Guanlan Subdistrict, Bao’an

Buses: 300B, 788

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