Shopping in Yangshuo
West Street is the most popular place to start your shopping in Yangshuo adventure. Yangshuo does not have any big shopping centers (for those you need to go to Guilin or other cities) but instead there are plenty of small shops selling all kinds of unique goods which are sometimes hard to find elsewhere. As said, West Street is probably the best destination to shop but other streets, East Street is trying hard to equal West Street, have shops and hawker stalls too. This page gives you an idea what you find.
Note also the tourist market at the arrival of the boat from Guilin and at night around the entrance of the Liu Sanjie Show. Before buying something, shop around first and become familiar with the prices offered.
The post office in Yangshuo is very effective and helpful to make sure your souvenirs will be send home.
There's plenty of souvenir shops but what are the interesting things to buy in Yangshuo? A good souvenir is always a painting roll.
Paintings are an excellent thing to give away. You will find quite a few painting shops in West Street. Popular motives are an imaginary Guilinesque landscapes, 4 seasons, flowers, bamboo, warriors, calligraphy and other motives. Paintings usually come on the roll but you can buy the painting usually without a roll too.
Prices depend on size, use of colors and the painter. Although motives are commonly used and many are made in art galleries in production line, they are all handmade and thus unique. The price is always negotiable.
The best quality paintings in Yangshuo can be found in the Morningsun Gallery in Cheng Zhong street (same street as McDonalds). It might not be the cheapest shop, it certainly have some of the very best art works in Yangshuo.
Xingping has some good quality painting shops too and the paintings can be cheaper if you bargain hard.
Many shops also sell painting materials like pencils, brushes, paint and some shops offer lessons in painting and calligraphy.
Handicrafts in Yangshuo, yes there are plenty of shops selling handicrafts from all over China. You will find cheap Tibetan silver, tribal textiles, Yunnan dresses, Dong minority embroidery and much more. The Dong Xi Fang shop in West Street is a good starting point to explore the handicraft for sale in Yangshuo. However, check other shops too. Ask for prices around until you roughly have an idea about the price and then bargain.
Handicrafts for sale include masks, puppets, antiques, woodcarving and much more
Masks and puppets
Like the paintings masks and puppets, expensive or cheap are all handmade and all unique. Most masks are made of wood and colorful painted. Puppets are usually dressed up in traditional costumes with embroideries. They might be heavy but it's easy to mail them back home. The post office in Yangshuo will help you ship them safely back home.
Buying antiques can be a tricky business. Not all antiques are allowed to export to your own country. Make sure if you buy antiques you are sure you can bring it back home.
Tea, the 7 Star Teahouse
Yangshuo is a great place to pick up some local tea. The tea production area of Yangshuo lies north of the town. Check the 7 Star Teahouse for details to visit the plantation, get a tea ceremony course or just buy some of their local produced teas.
You will find the 7 Star Teahouse at Die Cui Lu, from the bus station it's the first shop on your right hand
Have you learned to eat with chopsticks? West Street has a variety of shops selling beautiful chopsticks in sets of 8 to 24 pairs.
Most of the fans and palm fans can be found at the hawker stalls near the Li River and exit of the boats from Guilin. Fans can be made of paper or bamboo.
There's an easy and popular gift. Like masks and paintings it's a good idea to send these home by mail.
T-Shirts and other clothes
West Street and New West Street have several T-shirt shops. You can let your picture be drawn on a t-shirt or buy a t-shirt with your favorite person or picture on it. Some shops offer shirts with calligraphy or cartoons of famous people (or yourself, if you insist).
There are several clothes shops with trousers, shirts, ties, skirts, dresses etc in western sizes. You might even find shoes in your size.
In West Street and Guihua Road there are a few outdoor shops. Some of the shops are related to climbing shops and offer specific climbing materials.
Camping gear, sunglasses, even sleeping bags. You will find (copy) North Face materials.
Pillow sheets, bags, hats etc.
You want to buy a souvenir for the folks back home but have little space in your bags? Pillow sheets are a nice and lightweight present.
Many travelers search for books. It might be a hard search in other parts of China but in Yangshuo it's easy. Many cafe's have books to trade (usually 2 for 1) and there are several small book stores with a surprisingly interesting 2nd hand collection.
Yangshuo has all over plenty of local supermarkets selling local produced goods. Here you find local tea, win, cigarettes, biscuits and much more.
I said it earlier on this page, it might be a good thing to send some of the things you have bought back home. If there is one place in China were the post office is used to this service, it's in Yangshuo. Don't wait until a bigger city, Yangshuo has an excellent service and the staff speaks English. Sending parcels home from Yangshuo is a much better and easier option then almost anywhere else in China.
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7th Heaven Cafe
Finished shopping? In need for a refreshment? The 7th Heaven Cafe has all you need and more.
If one street in China is legendary it's West Street in Yangshuo. Once you arrive you understand why. It's here where you find the cafe, hostels, shops and other pleasures. Some never come further then West Street. Here's why:
Local Yangshuo market
The local Yangshuo market is an experience in itself. The variety of goods which are sold is enormous. From the local grown veggie and fruits, to Li River fish, dried products and live stock to prepared meat, roast dog (yes!) and plastic wear.
And in the back of the market there are a few excellent restaurants for a good lunch. Trust me, I have eaten here several times.
Inside the same building is the Morningsun Gallery located. This unique gallery has high quality paintings of local artists as from some well known artist further in China.