Situated west of Panjiayuan Bridge and south of the East Third Ring Road, the Panjiayuan Antiques Market is very accessible. The market deals mainly in antiques and arts and crafts. It also has the reputation of being the most inexpensive antiques market in Beijing, attracting foreign and domestic tourists.
Whether you want to sightsee, window-shop or buy collectors' items, there really is something for everyone. Even Hilary Clinton has famously shopped at Panjiayuan. With so many stalls selling similar items, this is a great place for bargain hunters. And although there are genuine articles to be found here, it is hard to tell the real deal from the fake, particularly if you aren't an expert.
Panjiayuan market covers an area of 4.85 hectares of land and accommodates over 3,000 stalls. It is the largest antiques market of its kind both in China and Asia. It used to be a weekend-only market. But, after some refurbishment work, it is now open for business seven days a week. However, Saturdays and Sundays are still the best days to go.
Secondhand goods, arts and crafts and antiquities are the main transactions in the market. Also on offer are antique furniture imitations, what is known to the Chinese as the "Four Treasures of the Study" (writing brush, ink stick, paper and ink slab), old books and paintings, agate, jadeite, ceramics, ancient Chinese and foreign coins, bamboo and animal bone sculptures, leather puppets for shadow play and a wide range of Chinese opera masks.
Buddhist relics, costumes of ethnic minorities, apparels, "Cultural Revolution" (1966-76) articles and daily necessities can also be found here. Traders from 24 provinces, municipalities and autonomous regions in China have stalls in the market, as do several ethnic minorities. Panjiayuan market is truly a market packed with Chinese traditional culture.