This highly focused 3 day/2 night weekend-get-away tour to the Chaozhou-Shantou area of eastern coastal Guangdong led by Professor David Lung (龍炳頤) (HKU Architecture) and his good friend Mr. WU Guo Zhi (吳國智 Chaozhou conservation architect) will bring you the highlight of the architectural gems of the region.
The Chao-Shan region is well known for the production of the literati gentry and the merchant class. On the first day of this trip, we will be exploring the grand estate of the wealthy rice merchant, the Former Residence of Ci-Huang Chen (陳慈簧故居); it is the first of its kind of an overseas Chinese dwelling in the Lingnan area. This 500-room Chinese courtyard complex built in the early 20th century is decorated with the Art Nouveau ceramic tiles of European designs. In the evening after dinner, there will be leisure time for shopping and for tasting the Shantou snacks in the famous open food stalls.
We will spend the next full day exploring the historic city center of Chaozhou. Guang-ji Bridge (廣濟橋) is one of the four famed bridges in China. It was the first movable bridge built in Southern Song Dynasty (1171).
Kai Yuen Si (開元寺, 738) is well known for its vertical raft structural system; the only one of its kind found in Chinese monumental architecture.
The Lung Hu Rural Township (龍湖寨) is the home for migrant merchants who settled in the region since Song Dynasty; female ancestors were worshipped in the ancestral halls.
Yi-Lve Huang Ancestral Hall (已略黃公祠, 1887) has the most ornate wood carvings of the Qing classical style and is listed a National Cultural Heritage.
On the last day, before we head back for Hong Kong via the high speed rail, we will visit the privately funded Shantou University, showcasing of the modern-day Chaozhou-Shantou identity of the literati and the merchant tradition.
Lung, David P.Y. (龍炳頤)
Registered Architect, Professor of Architecture, Lady Edith Kotewall Professor in the Built Environment, David Lung is internationally recognized for his scholarship and work in the field of heritage conservation and World Heritage properties. He is instrumental in bringing to fruition three World Heritage Inscriptions: Historic City of Macao, Kaiping Diaolou and Villages, and the Historic Cities in the Straits of Malacca.
Wu Guo Zhi (吳國智)
Wu Guo Zhi is acclaimed for his scholarship and works in the field of conservation architecture in China.He is the chief conservation architect in Guangdong and one of the chief architects in the conservation of Hong Kong’s Po Lin Monastery. In Chaozhou, his works included the restoration of Guang-Ji Bridge, Pai-Fang Street and the Kaiyuan Temple and Ancestral Hall of Han Yu. A registered architect in China, Wu Guo Zhi is also a professor of architecture, senior engineer in architectural conservation, and authorized architect in the National Heritage Conservation (ICOMOS/CHINA) (中國古蹟遺址保護協會).