Shaoxing Shopping - What to Buy
Generally speaking, Shaoxing, compared with Shanghai or Beijing, is not much of a large modern city in China. However, being embraced by green hills and clear waters, this charming city is endowed with deep cultural connotations and abundant material products in its long grand history that other modern cities cannot matched.
Shaoxing is a city rich in literature since the ancient time and it possesses the cultural atmosphere other cities don't have. There are interesting indicators denoting its cultural aspects, such as local fans and ink stones. Fan production here has a long history and the Wangxingji Folding Fan, 1879-1908, is the most famous. All the materials are carefully selected for its durability. Hence, it is said that the Wangxingji Folding Fan could be substituted as an umbrella when it rains.
Nowadays, fans come in many varieties, like folding fans or rosewood fans that may be decorated with golden binding at the edges or painted with beautiful sceneries. All these reveal the traditional Chinese art of fan production.
Kuaiji Yue Yan (Kuaiji Yue Ink Stone) is made from a kind of colorful stone from the Kuaiji Mountain and they possess intricate textures like the tiger stripes or Japanese banana leaf. All the Kuaiji Yue Yan are carved into shape according to its unique color and texture. Its unique natural vivid appearance boasts its intrinsic value.
As the city lies south of the Yangtze River, with warm and humid climate, Shaoxing is rich in silk, bamboo and tea. The Silk Products here are famous all over the country with its delicate texture, softness and bright color. Various silk products are available in the China Light & Textile Industrial City (address: Keqiao Town, Shaoxing City). Just like silk, bamboo is very common in the region. Bamboo Weaving in Shengzhou City is very popular and enjoys a good reputation in China for its varieties, delicate appearance and exquisite workmanships. Bamboo products include everyday articles like boxes or furnitures, as well as those for decoration, like retractable screen or animal figurines. All these are very useful and enjoy high value.
Pinshui Zhucha (Gunpowder Tea) is one of the many varieties of famous teas in Shaoxing. It boasts the reputation of ‘green pearl' for its solid round shape, green color and strong fragrance. Its fragrance aroma lingers on for some time after drinking. Pinshui Zhucha has always been considered as an article of tribute for the royal family in the olden days.
Shaoxing has also other famous products other than those mentioned above. One worth mentioning here is the traditional Rice Wine which has a history of about 2500 years. Another would be Preserved Vegetable which is rich in amino acids. Dried vegetables are pickled with marinade and then put out to dry again, after which they are preserved for some time again. It tastes rather savory.
Orchid cultivation has been carried on for thousands of years in Shaoxing. Many families who live around Lanzhu Mountain have been cultivating orchid for generations and owing to their perseverance, many rare breeds of unique fragrant and features were developed. It has even been chosen to represent the city.
Tips: It is restricted to bring in wine on flight in China, while the consignment of wine is available.