Shopping & Stuff
Jiangmen is not exactly Causeway Bay, but that was fine with us as we rummaged through some fascinating old shops and markets pretty much as time suited us. There are lots of modern air-conditioned shopping malls, but we preferred the open-air markets and traditional shops in town.
Tai Fu Cheng Commerce Training Center
This multi-storey mall has an odd assortment of shops selling everything from sports shoes to clothes and breast-enhancing treatments. The second floor houses the One Plus One supermarket, where you can buy both men's and women's fashion, Chinese medicine, and Great Wall wine to swill it down with. The decor itself is interesting - fake trees and a lot of glitz. Don't come here if you want the latest fashions, but it's worth a look if you're interested in taking home glossily-packaged local products.
Open Air Market
This is a slightly haphazard market. Stalls spill out onto the pavement and anywhere there is space. Although you may not buy much here, it is definitely worth having a look. Some of the wares are only on sale in season so the selection will be different every time you go. Watch out for the cars and mopeds while you are browsing on the street. Some of the things we saw on sale included pots of all sizes and shapes from Jiangxi and Hebei. Some were handmade and hand-painted, but the majority were mass-produced. A large painted pot cost about 30 yuan, but the asking price started at 60 yuan. Haggling is a must! We also saw wood carvings and various types of wooden furniture, made to order. While we were there, carpenters were working on a table with a large flying eagle standing on it. There were also all sorts of birds from common sparrows and budgerigars to exotic parrots as well as all kinds of plants and flowers.
The range of flora and fauna included roses, poinsettias, violets, art bamboo, african violets, kumquats, tangerines, chrysanthemums and cacti. There were lots of ceramics and glazed blue pottery. Wood carvings of fat buddhas, anumas, and other items were in abundance.
Master Calligrapher Wu Zheliang has been doing calligraphy since he was a child. He has 20 apprentices, young and old - the oldest at 60 years of age, is older than Wu himself. The artwork on sale ranges from traditional Chinese calligraphy to Chinese paintings of tigers and fish - a symbol of prosperity in Chinese culture. Why not have Master Wu write a poem out of your name?
18 Shuinan Road
Tel: (0750) 3195388
Along Wuyi Avenue, the main road to the ferry terminal, you'll see hawkers selling plump strawberries (in season) from little wooden stalls. Even if you're in a rush, you should stop and buy some. If you've got more time on your hands, you should definitely try your hand at strawberry-picking. The strawberry farmer hands out baskets and then you're free to root among the fields and pluck anything that takes your fancy. We paid 6 yuan a catty. Grape stands are set up along Lidong Road at the appropriate time of year.
If you've got more time on your hands, check out the shrimp ponds and fishing ponds, where there are two special local breeds. Shrimp ponds are located along Wuyi Avenue; fishing ponds along Lidong Road.