Here you'll find T-shirts, silk pajamas, Chinese tchotchkes, beads, shoes, and some electronics, as well as a great fish market in the basement. But under daily siege from foreigners eager to share their wealth, this landmark market is seriously overpriced – for everything. Don’t say we didn’t warn you. If you nevertheless find yourself there with your camera, head up to the fifth floor balcony for an amazing view of the Temple of Heaven.
User reviews of Hongqiao Market 红桥市场
If you are taking sightseeing your newly arrived friends to Temple of Heaven do visit this place for pearls.
If you have young or old ladies they love pearls and you can strike bargains. It works well as gifts to the guys when you
are gong back home. Remember to negotiate the prices the best you can.
Although similar to Silk Market in pricing and product offerings, Pearl Market, as its name might indicate, has a bigger focus on jewelry. I think I prefer Silk Market a little more in terms of their clothing selection and Pearl Market a little more in terms of their electronics and other goods. In addition, for me, Silk Market (which can literally be accessed from the Yonganli Subway station) is more convenient; however, for tourists that are visiting the Temple of Heaven, then Pearl Market is definitely worth checking our right across the street.
Hongqiao is still the better place for pearls, but with the silk market now selling them as well, sadly Hongqiao has seen better days. The last time I went, many of the vendors in the lower levels did not seem to care too much any more and seemed rather bored. The upper level pearl vendors were as lively as ever. If you don't want pearls, Hongqiao also has good work in both silver and jade. Hongqiao is still a good place to go, and with less crowds now then the silk market, and less aggressive vendors, it makes it worth the trip to go.
buying cheap south china pearls while visiting beijing is a must. there is no other place with such a wide selection of pearls than hongqiao market. go to the top floors and you will find shop after shop.
it is funny to see so many shops put pictures of the shop owner with a famous world dignitary. i always wonder if those dignitaries got a free pearl for their service of being poster spokesperson.
if you go, it is always good to do it the same day at doing the temple of heaven. i would recommend going to the temple of heaven in the morning, exiting at the east gate, lunch at the old beijing food restaurant next to hongqiao, and then afternoon going through hongqiao. you might as well do most your shopping here, since the silk market has higher prices because of the fact that more foreigners visit them. for bargain hunters, when you go shopping for pearls, do not get cornered by saying how much you would pay, always ask them first how low they can go. then you know the bottom basement price, which you can subsequently compare at other shops around. you will find that different shops have different designs and you may end up finding a necklace design that you like better at the next shop. just take your time or theyll just take your money.
There's no question the pearl market is overpriced, but it has some really cool things that other standard shopping center lacks. First of all, everyone says the pearls are high quality. I don't actually know if that's true, but anecdotally that seems to be the case. Second, downstairs they have all kinds of cool animals. My brother bought a scorpion there (killed before he bought it for safety reasons) and you can look at a whole range of cool Chinese animals and spices. The actual clothing is pretty much like the silk market and other touristy places, so you have to bargain a lot. However, if you do bargain you can get ok prices. I think it's fun to bring people to the pearl market even if you don't buy that much stuff since a) it's super close to temple of heaven which is nice to visit and b) there's the added benefit of seeing the exotic animals/spices in the basement. Overall, I think it's worth the trip.