Chinese names for British landmarks: Shard could be called “star plucking tower” and 100 other attractions christened with Mandarin monikers

Lynsey Barber
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A Chinese name for the Shard will be given (Source: Getty)

The Shard could soon be christened with a new name which means “A tower allowing us to pluck stars from the sky”.

Zhai Xing Ta, which translates literally as the star plucking tower in Mandarin, is one of the suggestions made by the Chinese public to give London’s tallest building a Chinese name.

The home of British suit making, Savile Row, could be called Gao Fu Shuai Zhi Lu, or “Tall, rich, handsome street”.

New monikers will be given to 100 landmarks and attractions as more Chinese tourists visit Britain than ever before. Nearly 200,000 visitors from China are now spending £500m a year across the UK.

In an effort to attract even more tourists and double that number by 2020, Visit Britain launched a £1.6m campaign to give them a Mandarin name, attracting 13,000 suggestions from the Chinese public.

The tourist body has now taken the top three name suggestions for 100 landmarks and attractions and will decide the final names in the coming days.

That means Blackpool could be called "A place that is happy to visit" (Le You Yuan), Brighton "George and John’s Indian palace" (Qiao Zhi He Yue Han De Yin Du Gong) and Stoke-on-Trent "Diverse ceramics" (Bo Han Qi Yan).

The winning names will join a number of British landmarks which already have Chinese names. See if you can guess them in the quiz below.


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The Beatles are a British institution, famously pictured crossing Abbey road. Many tourists seeking to recreate the band's iconic album cover are the bane of cabbies lives in the area, but what's the literal translation of the Beatles' Chinese name?

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Actor Benedict Cumberbatch is verging on national treasure status after portraying famous Londoner Sherlock (when he's not narrating penguin documentaries). Tourists love a walk past 221b Baker Street, but what do the Chinese call Benedict Cumberbatch?


Chinese tourists visiting London might fancy an escape from the city and where better than the historical surrounds of Cambridge, but what's the City called in Chinese translations?

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