The Forbidden City:
Qian Men (front gates to the Forbidden City) and remnants of old Beijing:
(This lady got pissed when she realized I was taking her picture and asked what I was doing. I walked away pretending not to hear/understand her. Whoops.)
Liulichang (area in Beijing dedicated to art galleries and antiques):
Dont go to China if you want to shop for brand name luxury goods. Go to Europe for that. Go to China if you want to shop for cute, random, useless trinkets at street vendors. As a lover of cute, random, useless trinkets, I was in heaven (yes, I will be posting my cute, random, useless loot a bit later in the week). Heres a tip: always offer the vendor 50% of their asking price. If they refuse, walk away. Walking away is your way of telling the vendor youre serious about your offer price. Most of the time when they see you walk away, they will immediately tell you they accept your offer price. If they dont stop you, keep walking and just remember, there is no such thing as one of a kind when it comes to shopping at street vendors in China. You WILL find that same item again, probably just a few vendors down and you WILL be able to buy at your offer price. And dont worry, these vendors get everything at a wholesale market so at the end of the day, they will still be making profit. One last thing...if you're buying something with a brand name attached to it from a street vendor, you are not buying the real thing at a incredibly cheap price. I dont care how real it looks, what the vendor tells you, or if the vendor had to go to the back to get you the "real stuff"...its fake.