There is now a substantial literature on various aspects of contemporary Chinese urbanization. There are, however, few recent studies of Chinese cities which examine social change and social interaction at the level of the urban neighbourhood. This paper seeks to fill some of this gap in current knowledge. It draws on a social survey of three contrasting neighbourhoods undertaken in Guangzhou in the Pearl River Delta, one of the most economically dynamic and rapidly urbanizing areas in the world. The paper explores inter alia the meaning of neighbourhood, sense of local belonging and community, and patterns and incidence of mutual assistance. The paper reflects on the extent to which market reforms are transforming patterns of local social interaction.