Chasing Bargains – Where Are The Best Flea Markets In Spain?

Flea Market in Barcelona.

By Nancy Todd         Comments by:  Negu, The Blogdog

Your Scoopettes, Regina and I, love a good flea market for spending money in Spain.  We get up early, hit the bargains when the air is cool, have a delicious Spanish coffee and carouse.  The Blogdog doesn’t want to go.

Flea markets are big, especially in Madrid, Barcelona, Granada, and Seville. Bargains include: old chandeliers with frilly, frosted shades, watches – 12 euros, mounds of tangled zippers.

A vendor is yelling, “Cell phones, 15 euros” (we know those came from a pocket on the Metro).  Rolls of fabric, hammers, handerchiefs, Houdini dolls.  Sparkly scarves, saws and a stuffed fox. Bins of underpants, back scratchers, and barrels.   Mardi gras beads,  toys and trucks. My eyes blur with all the stuff, like a landscape through a train window.

Seltzer Bottles


Catholic Church Memorabila

A personal favorite is a stylin’ 1920′s yellow and white striped celluloid cigarette holder.  I don’t smoke but it would accessorize the mother-of-pearl opera glasses I can’t live without.  I would like to start a collection of aqua, green and blue heavy glass seltzer bottles, but I am not into collecting stuff.

There is definitely a run on Catholic memorabilia at the markets - a sociological indicator (based on Scoopometer statistics) if you ask me.  Holy medals guaranteed to bring good luck, a floral edged china plate with a mournful Jesus, rosaries (could make good earrings with those), and a bunch of crucifixes.  Used crucifix anyone?  One vendor had a bunch of wooden holy figures, all depressed, including Jesus with a thumb in his mouth.  Maybe the catholic church is unloading as a fund raiser.  I think they should sell Michelangelos Pieta and call it even–open up all those  schools they closed and pay off the abuse victims.

Here is the rundown on the big four:

1.  Madrid: El Rasto. In the medieval neighborhood, huge.  Sunday, 9 – 2.  Where:  Ribera de Curtidores, Plaza de Cascarro

2.  Seville: Mercadillo de Alameda.  Sunday.  Plaza Almeda de Hercules.  In the Macarena neighborhood.  Also sells crafts, fruits and vegetables.   Anther market, Mercadillo de la Alfalfa,is on Plaza de la Alfalfa.  Sells birds, dogs, chipmunks, pet food and pigeons.  Just what I wanted, a pigeon.  Sundays.

3.  Barcelona: Los Encantes, Glories Plaza.  Wednesday, Saturday, Sunday.  Bar with great coffee on the southside.  Changing rooms near the bathrooms with a grumpy attendant you tip.

4.  Granada: Plaza Larga Market.  Saturday and Sunday.  In the Albazin neighborhood with 15th century buildings.  Flowers, stuff and more stuff, fruits, vegetables, clothes, shoes.

Get there earlier than the published starting times.  Bargains sell fast.  Watch your wallet.

The Blogdog has better things to do than go to a flea market.

Negu, The Blogdog comments: “Flea markets?   No, no, no.  You must be joking.  Why would any self-respecting dog, especially moi, want to go to a flea market?”

What are your top bargains at a flea market?  Please answer in the comments box below.

Need a hotel?  Check out hotels in Barcelona, Seville,  Granada

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  1. Posted September 6, 2012 at 9:43 am | Permalink

    I love the one on Sundays in Jerez. In among all the broken dolls and old tat you can find some crazy stuff – old school reports from the 50′s. Contracts and invoices from the 20′s. Real social history.

  2. admin
    Posted September 10, 2012 at 11:45 am | Permalink

    yes, Robin. Also love that stuff. Brings history alive. Especially love the old ‘penmanship’, and ink. Nancy

  3. Posted September 22, 2012 at 12:25 pm | Permalink

    I am happy to be shot down in flames over this one, but as far as I can see the Rastro is just one of those things that us men ‘just don’t get’.

  4. admin
    Posted September 22, 2012 at 11:11 pm | Permalink

    It’s ok men don’t get it. However, I see lots of men there. If there are fewer men, it just means more stuff for women!

  5. Marion
    Posted October 27, 2012 at 9:41 am | Permalink

    We go regularly to the flea market in El Verger in the Alicante region and have found many secondhand bargains there; including a chandelier light fitting, a cupboard which we use for our medicines but which has a figure of both a man and woman on the front, a beautiful clear glass and blue glass lampshade, a book on the Valencia region, oh much more. Of course, like any flea market there are times when we don’t find anything.

  6. admin
    Posted October 29, 2012 at 8:51 pm | Permalink

    Oh sounds like you are getting some great deals. I will put El Verger on my list!

  7. Jude
    Posted April 28, 2013 at 9:51 am | Permalink

    Hi.please I need help on where to get cheap cooking cylinders in spanish flea market.if it is online,please let me know.any response will be appreciated.

  8. admin
    Posted April 29, 2013 at 2:37 am | Permalink

    Try Encants market in Barcelona!

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