Ever wanted to skip the boulevard sprawl and head directly to an all-in-one location where you could purchase virtually everything a country has to offer? From aisles and aisles of authentic art & jewelry to world-class cuisine, these international destinations are home to some of the most renowned marketplaces around.
Bangkok, Thailand's Chatuchak Market – The scorching hot, crowded Chatuchak Market is a maze of more than 10,000 stalls visited by more than 100,000 visitors daily that sells everything from fake designer clothes to 25-cent pork sticks. The stalls are easily organized into sections characterized by the type of product sold e.g. clothing, handicrafts, and even pets. A typical handicraft stall will sell Buddha statues, incense, and musical instruments. The clothing section (comprising of more than 1000 stalls alone) is fake designer good paradise, where a misspelled "Emperio Armani" shirt can be bargained for a dollar. The Chatuchak market openly encourages haggling; just remember the 300% rule (the price originally quoted to you by the dealer is most likely up to triple the price of the price they are willing to sell their product for)
El Rastro, Madrid Spain – El raster is Madrid's biggest flea market and Europe's largest outdoor market, with more than 3000 stalls selling everything from antiques to theatre posters and hand drawn caricatures every Sunday morning. A tip is to bargain and to hunt for deals on alley stalls rather than main street stalls. Cap off any visit with some breakfast and drinks in nearby La Latina, with its crowded alleyways home to Madrid's best tapas bars.
Green Flea Market in New York, New York – Green Flea is one of the largest flea market events in the US. It offers a smorgasbord of different products from antiques to artwork by struggling artists. There are also large collections of new and used books. Check it out every Sunday from 10 AM to 5 year round on Columbus Avenue and 77th St. Bargaining is very welcome, especially towards the end of the day.
Albert Cuypmarkt in Amsterdam, Netherlands – This almost 100-year-old tradition has turned into a full-fledged international affair, with more than 300 stalls offering some of the cheapest eats around. Coffee shops line the streets, with its secondary offerings including clothes and other random items. It is open Monday through Saturday from 9 am to 5 pm in the Albert Cuupstraat section of De Pijp, with Saturday being the busiest day.