Shenzhen Shekou Area
Shenzhen Shekou Area Facts
Chinese Name: 蛇口 shé kǒu
Area: 12.29 square kilometers (4.75 square miles)
Location: southeastern part of Nantou Peninsula, Nanshan District, Shenzhen
Area Code: 0755
Zip Code: 518067
GDP (2018): CNY 251 billion (USD 36.5 billion)
China’s First Export-oriented Economic Development Zone & Pilot Free Trade Zone
Shenzhen Shekou is the forerunner as well as the epitome of China’s reform and opening up policy. In 1979, China’s first industrial district focusing on export was set here. Since then, many favorable policies have been taken to speed up its development and accumulate experiences for other parts of China. In 2015, Shekou was furtherly opened to the international stage as a pilot free trade zone. Over 40 years later, Shekou has become a modern coastal community full of skyscrapers and world-class enterprises, no longer the poor villages.
Why chose Shekou as China’s First Export-oriented Economic Development Zone?
When the decision of the Reform and Opening-up Policy was made in 1978 by China’s central government, a pilot and forerunner was needed for an experiment. Shekou, adjacent to Hong Kong, which is only 1-hour ferry ride away, came into officials’ eyes. This was because the short distance to the international metropolis and world’s financial center could attract foreign investments and bring in advanced technologies more conveniently. Also, many Hong Kong entrepreneurs had the will to invest in the mainland.
See also: Shenzhen Ferry
Shekou Model is the gathering of preferential policies and successful experiences while developing Shenzhen Shekou, which mainly includes:
1. The land belongs to the country, but the right to use land belongs to enterprises or individuals, who are allowed to build factories, office buildings, etc. on the land.
2. The government doesn’t intervene in business operations in principle, it lets the entrepreneurs do their business based on economics laws.
3. Tax preferences and other preferential treatments are launched for wholly foreign-owned and Sino-foreign joint venture enterprises.
Top Things to Do in Shekou
Nanshan Park (Da Nanshan Mountain)
Da Nanshan, literally longevity, is the highest mountain in Shenzhen Shekou, with the main peak being 336 meters (1,102 feet) high. It is the largest green land in the area based on longevity culture with a coverage of 352 hectares (870 acres). Hiking up on the top, the entire Shenzhen Bay comes into the view, and you can also see the Shenzhen urban area, and mountains and high-rise buildings in Hong Kong.
Shekou Sea World
Shekou Sea World is actually a 9-storey luxury ship berthed near Shekou Port. It was named Minghua and transformed into a comprehensive place of hotels and entertainment on the sea after it was deployed to Shenzhen Shekou. In 1984, China’s national leader Deng Xiaoping wrote the words "Sea World" on the ship, since then it has become one of the most popular tourist attractions in Shenzhen. By the ship, there is the Sea World Plaza in Southeast Asian garden style, with a large group of carvings of marine creatures on the east side and a beach on the west side. You can enjoy the music, dances, foods, crafts, etc. at the bars and restaurants there. The night scene there is worth to see with colorful lights and musical fountain show.
Sihai Park is well-known for the huge lead-copper bull, which is the largest status of a bull around the world, high as 28 meters (92 feet). The park is composed of two vast lakes and a large litchi woods, dotted with traditional pavilions, corridors and bridges. It is pleasant to see various flowers, trees, pawns, litchi woods and clumps of green bamboos. By the east lake, you may admire the lotus flowers in summer; and in the west lake, you can enjoy yourselves in the water playground.
Chiwan Tianhou Temple
Tianhou, or Matsu, is the goddess who protects fishermen on the sea in Chinese mythology. Tianhou Temple in Chiwan Village was built in Song Dynasty (960 - 1279 AD), well-known by people in Shenzhen, Hong Kong, Macao, Taiwan and the Chinese communities in Southeast Asia. People go there to pray for blessings and worship. On the birthday of Matsu in the 3rd lunar month in China, even people in Hong Kong would come there to join the worship ceremony. You may go into the temple to see the old halls, towers and wells.
How to Get to Shenzhen Shekou
The metro, buses and taxis are the main ways of transportation to reach Shenzhen Shekou. Visitors can fly to Shenzhen Bao'an International Airport, then take Metro Line 11 or city bus m527 to Shenzhen Shekou. If you arrive at Shenzhen North Railway Station by high speed train, you can take Metro Line 5, or Metro Line 4 and transfer to Metro Line 2 to get to Shekou area. City bus 204 / m106 and Metro Line 1 + Line 2 could take you to Shekou from Shenzhen Railway Station.