Where Religion And Architecture Mingle For A While

Situated at the heart of Guangzhous business district, towards the north of the Pearl River alongside its bank, lies the home of the Archbishop of the Guangzhou province.

Known to locals and a popular place for those of the Catholic faith to visit is the Sacred Heart Cathedral. Although the cathedral was once the residence of the Viceroy of the province of Guangdon, during the opium War it was completely destroyed.

Owing to and edict issued by the Emperor at that time in the 1800s which stated that compensation would be paid for the destroyed cathedral the Societe des Missions etrangeres de Paris obtained control of the site from the Qing government.

Later on through financial support from Napoleon III and the French Catholics, the Cathedral of the Sacred Heart was reconstructed. A French architect by the name of Nankeen Vautrin was brought in to design the cathedral. Overseeing the work at the cathedral was a vicar by the name of Francois Guillemin. Unfortunately the vicar was unable to see it to completion.

For visitors who come to the cathedral of the Sacred Heart in Guangzhou, the structure will no doubt bring back memories of the Notre Dame de Paris Cathedral. It is broadly believed to have been based on the cathedral in Notre Dame that there are those that call it the Notre Dame of the Far east. But in truth the cathedral is based on S. Clotildes Basilica in Paris.

The cathedral stretches across over two thousand square metres. The cathedral consists of another tower which is about 57 metres in length. The towers serve as a bell tower and the other serves as a clock tower. Much like the gothic cathedrals of its time, is a solid structure and anyone who visits the cathedral would gather such ideas by looking at the sturdy roof which is vaulted as well as the towers.

The cathedral also has another nickname stone house. Incidentally the granite stones that went into its structure were brought all the way from Hong Kong. A visit to the cathedral is highly recommended especially for students of architecture, or fanatics of the subject.

Getting about to view other attractions of Guangzhou could be done easily when staying at the Shangri La Hotel, Guangzhou. This hotel in Guangzhou is located close by to many shopping venues and other popular attractions. Other Guangzhou hotels in this region offer accommodation for any type of traveler, whether business or leisure.

Pushpitha Wijesinghe is an experienced independent freelance writer. He specializes in providing a wide variety of content and articles related to the travel hospitality industry.

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