China Travel Tips

Reflections on Travel in China

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Buying Antiques in China

Many people ask me about buying antiques in China. Actually over 90% of the ones you see in flea markets are very well made fakes or reproductions. The Government requires antique dealers to have a red seal on them given by the government. Of course many are sold by families and others which do not have the seal on them. Where do you find these? It is difficult sometimes but one place I found is right in Beijing. Li Songtang has been a collector of antiques by going into old buildings and houses being torn down and collecting them on his own recognizing that sometime in the future they will have value. When some of the Hutongs were being torn down to make way for new buildings, he went through the rubble to save some of the time worn pieces for his collection. You can visit his museum and shop at 3 Guozijian Dajie in the Dongcheng district between 08:30 and 6:00 His phone number in Beijing is 6401-8718. I myself have collected some pieces when I saw a temple being torn down that was over 700 years old. They were burning all the wooden pieces and I saved a worm holed monk from the fire and have it in a case in my home. Other carved wooden pieces adorn our walls from homes in LiJiang destroyed by an earthquake in 1996. For more information and places to visit to collect these rare pieces check my web site at

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