Beijing now has a huge range of shops to suit the pockets of a vast range of shoppers, from modest workers to the newly-fledged millionaires. The most high-profile glamorous shopping, featuring many of the international brands, is to be found around Wangfujing Dajie (near the Wangfujing Metro stop). There are also plenty of shopping malls and department stores.

But for more authentic Beijing shopping, go to the markets. At the Panjiayuan Market (weekends only) you can buy clothes, crafts and antiques, and it’s the same again at Hongqiao Market (or Pearl) market, where you can also buy all kinds of pearls, plus some extreme foodstuffs. For silk fabrics and clothes, go to the Xiushui Silk Market.

The kind of things that visitors buy include silk clothes (which can be quickly tailor-made), jade, carpets, lanterns, masks, kites, souvenirs of the Maoist past, and personalised 'chops' (name-stamps carved in Chinese characters).

Prices are fixed in the department stores, but in the markets in and around Beijing you'll be expected to bargain.

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