Don't go back home without buying your own Terracotta warriors!! Buy them to the local vendors outside the museum as it's way cheapier and you can't tell the difference. The box brings 5 warriors and a horse. Make sure to pack them well so they arrive safely home. Pay them with exact cash!
What to pay: Bargain a lot... from 10 yuan I got them for just 3!
Xiao Zhai pedestrian overpass was jam full of shoppers when our bus passed by on our way to the Big Goose Pagoda. So of course we had to check it out........lots of boutiques, department stores, pharmacies, etc.
But on our way to the Terra Cotta Warriors, past the train station (a totally different direction from Xiao Zhai), we also saw lots of shops. There were several blocks of shops selling shoes, just past the train station.
If you want to shop like the locals, you will want to get outside of the city walls.
We had a chance to buy a copy of the book about the Terracotta Warriors signed the local farmer who discovered them in 1974 while digging a well.
He has become a well-renowned figure, often appearing at the site for book-signing . WE were told he was only givn a couple of dollars from the government for his discovery but he seems to be enjoying his fame , at least.
There is a gift shop inside the Museum of the Terra Cotta Soldiers. As usual the prices are very high...even more so than some of the other tourist gift shops we've seen .
If you want to buy a set of the Terra Cotta Warriors You might want to buy them from the venders outside .
Inside they wanted $70.00 ( we saw then everywhere in other gift shops for $25.00)
From the venders we bought them for $2.00...the same set even in the same box. I caution you to watch how many yo buy though as they are heavy to pack!!
In the main street of the Muslim center I was approach by a girl who invited me to visit the Xi'an Fine Art Institute to look at the pictures. It was in a room at the first floor of a small hotel. They were made by students and teachers at the institute. The teacher had donated them for free, to support the institute. Or so Summer told me. They were the mostly the classical stuff: characters, flowers, landscapes. On silk and paper. But they were cheaper than the art in the Folk Museum.
Summer told me she is now teaching in Kindergarten, as she had finished the school. There were some picture by her too, very classical four seasons. The take turns in approaching people.
I had read in the guide that these 'galleries' are often an hoax - and perhaps this was too - but in that case she sure was a hell of an actress and it was worth the performance.
What to buy: I bought a nice ' modern' one, a woman with a cat, a bit in the style of Corneille, and got a traditional for free. If you're looking for a good buy, this place seems to deliver.
What to pay: I got it for 100 yuan, fair enough
This is a small shop next to the 'Folk House' in the Islamic main street. It caught our eyes because of the combination of traditional clothes and modern design: beautiful silk dress and other clothes made to measure. We ordered on the first day and the next evening they were ready. We didn't even try to get the price down, it is so good quality for your price. It is a family store and the made the desigs and the clothes themselves. Xu Hong Juan speaks a bit english and is very kind. She gave soem good advice. When looking for a beautiful handmade silk dress: visit this shop!
What to buy: Clothes: an evening dress
What to pay: abou 450 yuan
The markets in the Muslim Quarter are filled with great souviners and you will find yourself lost within them for a couple of hours. Most of the vendors sell the same thing but it's fun to bargain with them and pretend to walk away if you don't get the right price.
Items sold include:
and lots more!!
Price: What ever you can bargain them down to!!
This shop was right next to the Nanpo Village and you could easily miss it-it is a bit nondescript. However, it did seem to have a reasonable collection of carved Jade ornaments including the one in the photo.
Out the back were various cheap jade ornaments.
Shuyuanmen Gate is a small street with 400 history . It was the gateway to the Guanzhong Shuyuan (Guanzhong Academy), one of the four famous Academies of ancient China. The Forest of Stone Stele is on the end of the street.
There are hundred shops established in the ancient style. You can see various size of writing brushes hang from above the gate of shops. Many of the owners know a lot about Chinese calligraphy, painting,and other cultural things. Some of them are real artists. Maybe you can be permited to visit their small workshops, which are located behind the shops, to see how they make those crafts.
Many local people, including amateurs and artists look for things they want here.
The condition is comfortable and tidy.
What to buy: Four treasures of study (writing brush, ink stick, silk paper and ink stone);
Rubbings of calligraphy and paiting from the Forest of Stone Stele;
Shaddows of shaddow play (made of donkey skin or bull skin, totally handmade);
Xun (the oldest instrument, decovered from Banbo Village, yes, 6000 years ago)
and other folk arts.
What to pay: Bargain
Zhongda International is known as the most luxurious shopping centre in Xi'an. If you need clothing or shoes suitable for a business activity or a banquet, you can go there. Of course the price is not cheap.
What to buy: Wold-famous bands: Louis Vuitton?APRADA?AMaxMara?ACerruti 1881?AGivenchy?AAquascutum?AVERSACE?AGIADA......
If it is department shopping you want this is the largest store in Xian with 4 levels of various goods ranging from electrical, homewares to clothing. A must just to compare prices!!
Open every day 9am-9.30pm
We were taken to this shop before we went to the actual archaelogical site and so were a bit concerned about agent commissions etc. We made it quite clear we would not be buying anything.
This factory has reproductions of Qin terracotta warriors and horses and lacquer ware products. It also has traditional wooden furniture, lacquer wood, rosewood, jade screens and other souvenirs.
We found prices quite reasonable and actually better than at the actual site.
PS We did end up buying two small pieces for 100 Yuan each !!
What to buy: Replicas of the terracotta warriors, jade screens, rosewood furniture, other souvenirs
What to pay: Anything from 50 Yuan upwards
Not far from the tomb...
What to buy: If you wish to buy the miniature Terracotta for sovernier, I would suggest you to buy near to the entrance of the Terracotta musuem not the factory..factory charge you 100% more than those vendors selling near the Terracotta musuem, you must bargain..I bought a set of 4 minaiture Terracota Army with a horse, not the tiny one...cost me only 5RMB for a set in a box, and a friend of mine bought at the factory for 50RMB...you can't see any different ..quality look the same, so is the packing (box). I will take a picture of it and posst it later.
Sorry don't have any names but the large supermarkets sell shoes for about £3 a pair for leather uppers and mandmade soles. Absolutely ideal for chinese weather conditions or high fashion. Our uk party's new walking sandles (purchased in the Uk for over £50) fell apart in the first two days of heavy rain - our supermarket shoes are still going strong, lots of rain in china and here too. For fashion shoes you need to apply some glue when you get home but at £1.50 - £2.00 the glue is well worth it!
BeiYuan Men pedestrian street is the all-in-one place to go for local snacks, local meals and local souvenirs. It's right next to the Drum Tower, parallel with DongDaJie (East Street). The entrance's on the left side of the entrance of Drum Tower. Once inside, u'll see a sheltered market (large red umbrellas) on the right; small alley leading to the Great Mosque on the left; and BeiYuan Men, a street sheltered with trees and old-styled shop signboards ahead of u.
What to buy: Besides souvenir shops, the street also houses many famed restaurants that is worthy of trying. Many guidebooks that i read, including LP, mainly introduce cheap local dishes, and they certainly weren't joking. Popular dishes are like 'yang rou pao mo' (bread crumbs with noodles in lamb stock soup), 'liang pi' (cold noodle in peanut sauce), 'yang rou chuan' (lamb in sticks), dumplings with lamb or beef, etc. As u can guess, the local stars are the lambs & beef, mostly owing to the Muslim chinese minority in this city called the 'Hui's. Coming from a Muslim country myself, i find it odd having the Chinese-faced-but-wearing-songkok-Muslims speaking to me in fluent Mandarin.
The local snacks from street stalls are a great delight too. I tried the persimmon (a fruit) cake with different variety of filings (0.50yuan per pc) and 'jing gao' (1yuan; flour with sugar & a choice of filings- see 3rd photo). I just love the local feel of cosy street stalls in a small alley, especially along HuaJue Xiang (it's a street name).
Local souvenirs are abundant in shops along BeiYuan Men. The unmistakable handicrafts like lipstick box, coin purses, fridge magnets are reasonably priced, and most have a trusty price tag above them (those without, may have to bargain). On the end of the street towards the Drum Tower, the sheltered market sells local dry food like red dates (of all shapes & sizes), raisins, preserved kiwis, pistachios, cashew nuts, etc. Miniature handicrafts like terracotta warriors (dirt cheap; minimum 8yuan- for a set of 5 in a box), decors from most tourists spots in the city can be obtained here at a fraction of the price too.
What to pay: Local dishes from 2yuan (for 'liang pi') to 13yuan for 'yang rou pao mo'.