8 Incredible Flea Markets Around the World
We've hunted down the coolest flea markets from Brooklyn to Buenos Aires in search of antique treasures and vintage finds. Just don't forget your cash.
San Telmo Market, Buenos Aires
San Telmo is the birthplace of tango and a hub for Argentine arts, culture and antiques. Serious collectors fly from all over the world to visit a select few shops in the area, but the district comes alive on Feria weekends. Sprawling in every direction as far as the eye can see, artisans from all over the country come to sell their wares: handcrafted leather belts, delicately carved wood utensils, and 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. All prices are negotiable, so brush up on your Spanish and come prepared to barter.
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.
Aux Puces, Paris
The Marché aux Puces de Saint-Ouen is quite possibly the most famous network of flea markets and antiques in the world. 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.
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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!
Damnoen Saduak Floating Market, Thailand
Looking for a different shopping experience? The Damnoen Saduak Floating Market, just 90 minutes west of Bangkok, is unlike any other. 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.
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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.
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 $9 admission. The market goes on rain or shine, and 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. Brightly painted airstream trailers welcome shoppers in to browse custom designed clothing, trucks from out in Joshua Tree drive in loads of indigo dyed fabrics, and of course, knick-knacks abound.
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