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Shenzhen: Dongmen Pedestrian Street – A Mall of Shopping Malls

Here is another one of those traditional Chinese shopping districts that I’ve come to admire, they span for block after block, most of them have been operating for centuries, they’re vibrant, teaming with life, and they’re packed with keen sellers waiting to do deals. These traditional marketplaces have soul, and character that the modern shopping complexes just don’t have. And the Dongmen, aka Laojie, market area of Shenzhen is no different.

On my first visit I was looking for ‘Dongmen Pedestrian Street’, expecting a casual automobile-less street with some shops, but what I found was more like a ‘shopping suburb’ spanning several blocks including countless brand name shops, several multi-level malls, several multi-level markets, food streets, public spaces, ad-hoc stalls set up in alleyways and in every nook and cranny possible. Such is the expanse of this shopping district it needs three KFC’s!

Apparently, this area has been ticking away for over 300 years and has long been one of Shenzhen’s most popular places for shopping. Like most things in China, it’s got several English aliases including Dongmen Pedestrian Street, Dongmen Walking Street, Laojie (which means ‘old town’), Dongmen Market and East Gate which is actually what the word Dongmen means.

As for shopping, the market stalls are overflowing with men’s and women’s clothes, shoes, jewllery, handbags, travel bags, and suitcases. The traditional market stalls can be found down alleyways and inside the several multi-level ‘wholesale’ malls. There’s also a multi-level mall, or department store if you like, that’s dedicated to just shoes, one just for comic books and there’s the multi-level Hongkai Craft City amongst others. Plus, there are the typical modern multi-level malls, like Sun Plaza, that feature many of the popular chain stores, a supermarket, etc etc

Stuff at Dongmen is cheap, at the market stalls you’ll need to check the quality, but you can bargain your way to extremely cheap deals if find something you like. Inside the more upmarket multi-level malls, and the retail chain stores, it’s prices as marked but quite often they have sales offering substantial discounts.

As for food, there’s plenty of choices including KFC, McDonald’s, Pizza Hut, Saizeriya (pizza+pasta similar to Pizza Hut), Starbucks and there’s plenty of traditional food stalls, local restaurants and even dim sum at the Magic Dim Sum Restaurant. There’s also the Modern Toilet Restaurant if you like sitting on the can while eating dinner.

Unless you like a crowd, it’s best to visit on weekdays, public holidays are absolute chaos (in a harmonious style), just like below.

For another review visit Dongmen Pedestrian Street (Laojie) at Shenzhen Shopper.

Getting There: take the Metro (subway) and get off at Laojie station and walk out exit A. For taxi here is the address in Chinese: 深圳市东门步行街

Dongmen Pedestrian Street area on the map, with my picks for the top 5 places to stay

Relax Season Hotel Dongmen

Relax Season Hotel Dongmen

 Metro access

Located close to Dongmen Pedestrian Street, Relax Season Hotel Dongmen features a restaurant and free WiFi throughout the property.
Shenzhen Dongmen Metropark Suites Hotel

Shenzhen Dongmen Metropark Suites Hotel

 Metro access

Metropark Hotel, Shenzhen is an all-suite business property located in Luohu District Dongmen Area offering free private parking on site and features spacious rooms with kitchenettes 
Shenzhen Sunon Hotel,Dongmen (Formerly Sunon Holiday Villa Hotel)

Shenzhen Sunon Hotel,Dongmen

 Metro access

Located in downtown Shenzhen along East Gate Walking Street, Sunon Hotel is a few steps from Laojie Subway Station (line 1 and 3). It provides free Wi-Fi in the rooms and free parking.
Hyatt Place Shenzhen, Dongmen

Hyatt Place Shenzhen, Dongmen

 Metro access

Only a 5-minute walk from Dongmen Walking Street, Hyatt Place features comfortable accommodation with satellite TVs and free Wi-Fi.
Crowne Plaza Hotel & Suites Landmark Shenzhen

Roughly the middle of the shopping area

3 Comments on “Shenzhen: Dongmen Pedestrian Street – A Mall of Shopping Malls

  1. Hi

    Refer to your pics “market stall”, may i know which mall is that?

    is it 白马wholesales mall?

    if it is, i know that theres a few 白马wholesales there, could you specify which one and the directions to it pls?


    1. theres a lot of wholesale malls in the Dongmen area, White Horse, or 白马, is located part way down the pedestrian street (erhengjie pedestrian st) near the big bell and public square. Also check out http://shenzhenshopper.com . Give yourself plenty of time if you’re going shopping in the Dongmen area, enjoy!

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