Some people like to buy their clothes from H&M or Zara and their furniture from Ikea. Everything comes in various sizes, everything is priced, and new stock is guaranteed. In a world where everyone is happy to dress the same and go home to similar looking apartments containing the same brand of budget Swedish furniture, this poses no problem. But if you like your style to be unique and your home quirky or you just love a good bargain, then flea markets are a good alternative for you. In this article, we invite you to discover the best flea markets in Barcelona.
Encants flea market
One of the biggest and the best flea markets in the city is the Encants market, which has been around since the 14th century, making it the oldest market in Europe.
The Encants market is a held in a huge open-air structure with an interesting reflective ceiling that protects from rain and the sun, and allows for some really cool photo ops. All kinds of items are sold in this market, from vintage accessories to old telephones, from antique sofas to cheap cosmetics, and everything in between. There is a lot of junk here that is difficult to imagine anyone wanting to buy, but if you have the conviction of a true bargain hunter then there are undoubtedly treasures and bargains to be found.
The size and chaos of the Encants market are part of its charm. You will be mixing with locals and tourists as you try to unearth a gem or two. Saturday is, of course, the busiest day, so it is best to avoid it if you can help it.
Auctions of antiques start very early, at 7 am, which is when the commercial buyers arrive. There is usually a second auction at noon when all the unsold goods drop in price.
If the thought of Ikea repels you and you are interested in second-hand furniture, then the large hall is definitely worth a visit. There are usually some beautiful items such as light fittings and mirrors along with antique sofas and chairs available for sale.
The market supposedly closes in the afternoon, however, many of the vendors shut shop at around midday and go home, so it’s definitely worth setting your alarm early if you want to get a good look around and truly experience this most Spanish of flea markets.
Els Encants is located at Carrer de los Castillejos, 158.
Related article: Second-hand shops in Sant Antoni
Taking place very close to the Drassanes metro station and hidden behind the Maritime Museum, the Flea Market is one of the most popular ones of its kind in Barcelona. From mid-morning until around 7 in the evening on Sundays you can visit the market and shop around for a good bargain and even offer to make trades.
The Flea Market has gained such popularity in Barcelona that it decided to create a second type of second hand market in the city, which they have dubbed Fleadonia. This market takes place close to La Filmoteca de Catalunya, at Plaça Salvador Seguí.
Stamps and coins market
If you are philatelist or numismatist, then check out the weekly market that takes place on Sundays at Plaça Reial. Even if you have no interest in collecting such things, this is an atmospheric market that is worth a visit even if just to take a walk around this beautiful plaza and sit for a coffee while you enjoy the ambiance. This market takes place from 9 am to 2:30 pm.
Related article: Barcelona’s vintage fashion guide
Mostra d’Art de Pintors del Pi
If you are interested in purchasing some unique artworks at a good price, where the money goes straight into the artist’s pocket, then this is the market to go to. They have watercolors, oils and feature all kinds of art from expressionism to surrealism although the focus is often on typical Spanish streets and landscapes.
This market is usually operational every day of the week except for Sunday, from 8 am to 8 pm, at Plaça de Sant Josep Oriol, in the Gothic neighborhood.
So, if you are in the mood for a rummage and don’t mind getting involved with your shopping experience then head to one of the city’s many flea markets and get yourself a bargain or two.
Happy bargain hunting!
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