Changchun is a major industrial center in northern China, the capital of Jilin Province, and the most important distributing hub in the region. Though the city is best known for the manufacture of automobiles, machinery and trains, the city and Jilin Province are famous for a number of local products as well. The most important of these is ginseng. Used for centuries as a herbal remedy, ginseng is often included in Traditional Chinese Medicine products, or brewed into tea as a nourishing stimulant. Deer antlers are also an important item in the region, mainly produced in the Changbai Mountain Area. They are used in TCM applications, and are usually sold processed and sliced. Jilin is also known for woodcarving, local examples of which are particularly fine. Prices in Changchun are relatively low, compared to China’s other large centers, so it is a great place to pick up traditionally pricey items (like ginseng) at a bargain price.
There are a few main shopping areas in the city; People’s Square, Chongqing Street and the Guangfu market are the major ones for local products and souvenirs, while there are a number of large department stores and shopping centers for clothing, daily necessities and other commodities.
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