Kathmandu offers the best shopping in the country. Everything that is turned out in the various centres around the valley can be found here, although you can often find a better choice, or more unusual items, in the centres that produce the items – Jawalakhel (southern Patan) for Tibetan carpets, Patan for cast-metal statues, Bhaktapur for woodcarvings, and Thimi for masks. Thamel has some excellent trekking gear for sale, but don’t think that you are getting the genuine article. Most of the ‘Columbia’ fleeces and ‘North Face’ jackets are Chinese knock-offs or made locally but with imported fleece and Gore-Tex. An endless supply of curios, art pieces and plain old junk is churned out for the tourist trade. Most does not come from Tibet but from the local Tamang community.