Posted: 1 Sep 2017 10 Cool Flea Markets Around the World
1. Aux Puces, Paris
The Marché aux Puces de Saint-Ouen covers seven hectares and is the largest antique market in the world, receiving between 120,000 to 180,000 visitors each weekend. In the outskirts of Paris, the vast expanse of stalls are almost like a city of their own—quirky shopkeepers hawk everything from delicate old maps to vintage postcards with love notes written in French. On the higher end, you’ll find museum-quality antiques, crystal trinkets, and authentic vintage Louis Vuitton trunks stacked to the sky.
2. San Telmo Market, Buenos Aires
Serious collectors fly from all over the world to visit a select few shops in the area and the district comes alive on Feria weekends.
The Feria de San Telmo is one of the most notable and popular events that takes place in Buenos Aires. Nestled in one of the oldest neighborhoods in Buenos Aires, the San Telmo Fair is bustling with unique artisans and antiques every Sunday. Come here to find handcrafted leather belts, delicately carved wood utensils, and even intricately painted old soda-syrup bottles.
At the center of the square, Plaza Dorrego, you’ll find some true characters selling family heirlooms, dainty sets of dyed wine glasses, military paraphernalia, buttons, maps, silver jewelry—you name it.
3. Eastern Market, Washington D.C.
The Eastern Market in Washington D.C. is part farmers market, part flea market and part artist haven. Leave it to the capital to create a place where you can pick up juicy tomatoes, bright wildflowers, handcrafted jewelry, old maps, a Moroccan rug and palm reading all in one place.
Thanks to the influx of both tourists and locals for the weekend market, the neighborhood has also become a brunch hotspot. Snag a seat on the patio at Montmartre to fuel up with a French press and crepes before you dive into the madness.
4. West Bottoms, Kansas City
On the first Friday of every month, one of America’s best-kept flea market secrets comes to life: the West Bottoms of Kansas City, Missouri. Stores like Le Fou Flea open their doors and offer bargains on quirky finds, from vintage dresses and furs to old beer steins.
Carefully curated shops like Prize stock first-class interior design gems, including over-dyed Turkish rugs, ancient seafoam green demijohn wine jugs and handcrafted furniture. As you wander street after street in this old brick-paved district, you’ll find reclaimed barn wood furniture, live music and food trucks—a destination-worthy weekend for any treasure hunter.
5. El Rastro, Madrid
This popular Spanish flea market is held every Sunday and public holiday throughout the year. The main street is dedicated to market stalls selling predominately new clothes while the side streets are reserved for hidden treasures, such as cut price antiques and collectables. After a morning of browsing, head to the nearby La Latina, one of the oldest neighbourhoods in Madrid, to enjoy some tapas… and a beer.
6. Alex Raskin Antiques, Savannah
Often called the last unrestored grand mansion of Savannah, the legendary home is completely suspended in time, creating an antiquing experience unlike any other. Climb the grandiose staircase, and you’ll discover floor after floor of furniture, art and relics of our nation’s past.
The maze-like quality and eerie splendor makes it a wonderful place to pass an afternoon—particularly after a few mimosas. Savannah is open container, after all!
7. Damnoen Saduak Floating Market, Thailand
This is the most popular floating market in Thailand and a great place for giving you an insight into a bygone way of life. Shoppers stick to the banks of the canal, calling out to vendors who sell to them from their canoes. The floating merchants offer trinkets, clothing, fresh fruit, pictures with boa constrictors and even meals prepared in their little boats. If you make the journey, expect there to be crowds, but rest assured you’ll walk away with plenty of loot and photo-ops.
8. Brooklyn Flea, New York City
It might seem like a cliché these days, but of course Brooklyn is home to some of the best vintage finds around. Where there’s demand there’s supply, and this artisanal paradise delivers. Over 100 vendors collect, make and sell leather purses, rare watches, kitchenware, hand-knit scarves and cut-off Levi’s.
And because it’s New York, you can expect artisanal eats at its sister concept Smorgasburg, a food market with the Instagram-famous ramen-bun burgers and hot pink hibiscus Dough doughnuts from local purveyors, chefs and bakers.
9. Monastiraki Flea Market, Athens
During the week the Monastiraki Flea Market in Athens is heaving and very popular with tourists. On Sundays, however, the larger shops close and merchants bring out tables and carpets, selling all kinds of rare vintage goodies on the street.
10. Rose Bowl Antique Market, Pasadena
On the second Sunday of every month, the Rose Bowl arena in Pasadena, California opens its doors for the Flea Market. A favorite of bargain hunters and stars alike, it’s one of the most iconic flea markets in the world—so much so that they charge an admission.
The market occupies the loop around the 90,000-seat stadium. It’s worth every penny for the sight alone, but you’re sure to find some excellent souvenirs as well.