China Travel guide — Shopping in Silk Street, Beijing

The most famous shopping mall for the foreigners in Beijing is the Xiu Shui Market(Silk Street Market). It is located along Chang An avenue near the Yong An Li (120) line 1 subway station. You can now walk directly from the subway into the mall via an underground passageway without stepping outside into the scorching heat of summer or the terrible cold of winter. Alternatively you can take a taxi using the Chinese name shown below. Print and hand to your taxi driver. (Silk street is a good choice for your China vacations)

Xiu Shui Market has 410 stores and almost 1000 employees. The total revenue is more than 100 million rmb last year. You can get traditional Chinese silk,handmade handicrafts here. But what makes the Xiu Shui Market so famous is not these items. In the the ninteen 80’s or 90’s, most stores here were selling Parallel import items or fakes. There is a story about these fake items: An Italian once bought some handbags and watches. When he brought these fake items back to Italia and do some identifications,the result is surprising, they are not fakes. This story attracts a lot of tourists to the Xiu Shui Market. 🙂

Now Xiu Shui market is in a new 5 storey building. This building replaced the old outdoor Xiu Shui market. If you don’t have too much time for shopping in Beijing, the Xiu Shui market could be the only place you need to visit. In this new market, the store assistants are trained to speak English. This makes your shopping easier here. Of course, they don’t speak very good English. Their English is something like “cheaper”,”your price”,”80 yuan”, etc. They often carry a calculator and use it to show the price to customers.

Bargaining skills are still very important here. Usually you can get 50% to 70% off if you are good at bargaining. The new Xiu Shui market is no longer a place to buy fake items anymore. The government has made a lot of efforts to regulate this market. The chance you will get fake items here is pretty small.

Items here is like: Shoes,Trousers,Jackets,Chinese Carpets,Watches,Silk by the roll,Jeans,Chinese Paintings,Pearls,etc. The most attractive thing here is the price comparing with the price in other countries. Sometimes you can get good things ridiculously cheap if you are really good at bargaining.

The Chinese address: 北京秀水街市场


By Shane Lee