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Hong Kong is a dazzling city that consists of three main areas: Hong Kong Island, Kowloon Peninsula and the New Territories. When it comes to a serious shopping experience, Hong Kong has everything in abundance. HK's malls, department stores and designer boutiqes offer an amazing contrast to the bustling open-air markets nestled among the towering skyscrapers.Savour culinary delicacies.

Hong Kong Tourist Guides — Introduction

A visit to the Jade Market in Yau Ma Tai will provide an insight into something near and dear to the heart's of Chinese people. Jade. The written character for jade means a combination of beauty, nobility and purity. The green stone, in all its many hues and colours is associated with long life and good health. It is smooth and cooling to the touch. To this day some people wear a jade bracelet - something next to the skin - to ward off all sorts of health hazards. Grandmothers routinely buy a piece of jade for newborns.

Located on Kansu and Battery streets in Yau Ma Tai, the Jade Market is a collection of around 400 stalls selling a wide range of jade pendants, rings, and bracelets, carvings and ornaments. The market is also the main gathering place for buyers of this fine stone who today still communicate with secret hand signals when making a purchase.

Buying jade is really an art. Jade is not just green but rather comes in a great variety of colours and textures. The jade sold in Hong Kong is mostly jadeite from Burma. In Hong Kong there are many kinds of jade from natural pieces to ones which have been bleached and then impregnated polymers. There is also jade which has been dyed to enhance its colour.

Top quality jade is pure green and very expensive. Most pieces have a yellow tinge but no brown or grey should be in the finished piece. The best jadeite is semi-transparent. Opaque jadeite with cloudy patches typically has less value.

When shopping for jade, you should bring someone who knows jade.

You'll find the Jade Market at the junction of Kansu and Battery streets. Take the MTR to Yau Ma Tai, exit C.

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