I first wrote about the Chinese port of Zhuhai shortly after it was announced as a 2019-2020 stopover back in August 2018 (See Blog 18: First 2019-2020 stopover announced …… Zhuhai ….. yes I had to look it up too, published 26 Aug 2018) and again following the Clipper briefing back in January (see Blog 44: The View From The Nursery End (with some text, pictures and even videos this time! published 27 Jan 2019).
At the latter event it became clear, for the first time, that Zhuhai is where I will rejoin the Clipper race in the spring of 2020 for the start of Leg 6 – The Mighty North Pacific. Leg 6 is likely to involve two races – the first up the Chinese coast from Zhuhai to Qingdao, and the second from Qingdao to the eastern seaboard of North America. With preparations now ramping up for the 2019-2020 Race, new Chinese Host Port and Team Partner, Zhuhai has become the first to have its yacht branded. It took two experts approximately 18 hours to brand the boat ……..
……. with a design that features some of the city’s key attractions including the Zhuhai opera house, Lovers Road, the statue of the Fisher Girl and the newly opened Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge (see Blog 18).
Zhuhai, nicknamed The City of Islands (it has 146 islands) was recently voted one of the happiest places in China and is surrounded by a beautiful backdrop of mountains and boasts the longest city coastline in the country. It is a mere 70 minutes ferry trip from Hong Kong or even quicker via the recently opened bridge, the world’s longest sea crossing bridge. The opera house was inspired by a painting by Botticelli and shellfish from the waters of the Pearl River; Lovers Road is a 17km long coastal route which provides stunning views of the city and the surrounding islands and also takes in the Fisher Girl statue, holding aloft a glistening pearl and one of the most popular images of the city. Legend has it that the Fisher Girl statue commemorates a love story between a local fisherman, Hai Peng, and an angel – daughter of the South Seas Dragon King – who descended to earth one day, fell in love with the beauty of the land and turned herself into a fisher girl, weaving nets and searching for pearls to earn a living.