Part of the range of hills that runs through Guangdong Province, White Cloud Mountain (Báiyún Shān, 白云山) is right outside town and offers a peaceful escape from Guangzhou's traffic and urban landscape. You will not, however, be the only one with this idea and, on the weekends especially, the hills are alive with the sounds of Cantonese.
The hike to the highest point should take a little over an hour, but there is the requisite cable car that can do the work for you. Temples, tea houses and lookouts will make sure you never feel alone in the wild, and the views of the city are great and somewhat comforting.
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