Sure, a lot of markets seem to be selling the same old same old; flea market vendors try to put a price on nostalgia while artisans maintain that theirs are the original lightbulb terrariums. But not all markets are created equal, nor are the vendors who comprise them. Here’s where to go if you’re keen for a stroll as you shop or bargaining before you buy.
Terreiro do Paço Craft Market
Located under the vaulted arches of on the north side of Praça Comércio, this small market runs every weekend and on bank holidays. A small number of vendors show their creations like hand-chipped stone address plates, handmade knit necklaces with silver accessories, modern jewelry, hand painted ceramics, and more. Once you hit Martinho da Arcada, you’ve exhausted the market, but throughout the year, other smaller fairs will join in under the arch selling wine, cheese, and other edibles.
Sunday Market at LX Factory
The weekly Sunday flea market at LX Factory in Alcântara takes place along the main street. Here, vendors are more likely to be on the quirky side, selling vintage and local designer clothing and jewelry, vinyl, and more. Think of your friend with the man bun…then think of his apartment. You get the idea.
The Bio Market at the Jardim do Principe Real
Every Saturday between 11h and 18h, farmers from across Portugal gather in Principe Real to sell fresh produce, home-made olive oil, soaps and grains. It’s not a bargain-style bio market, but the price tag is worth it: these products are farm to table and you can usually get them to throw in a bunch of fresh herbs without having to ask. Bring your own bags, otherwise you’ll get the stink eye. Do you like stuff? Keep your eyes open for the artisan market that surrounds the park on the last Saturday and Monday of each month. There you’ll find handmade gift-able goodies, fashion and accessories, and home decor.
The Anjos flea and craft market located at 70 Regueirão dos Anjos is one of the largest creative markets in Lisbon. It takes place on the first weekend of every month (except for January and August) from 11h to 19h and specializes in vintage clothing, one-of-a-kind art, homemade jewelry and accessories, and interior decorations. If you’re looking for a gift for your artsy friend, start looking here.
Feira de Alfarrabistas
This weekly book market in Chiado is set up on Rua da Anchieta every Saturday. You’ll find a mixture of (mostly Portuguese) secondhand books ranging from rare antique to re-printed Penguin classics. There are also plenty of old maps, comic books, newspapers, and vintage postcards to sift through if that’s more your thing. There are some books in English and French stuffed between the dust jackets, but you’ll have to hunt for them.
Feira da Ladra at Campo de Santa Clara
The thieves market is the best-known market in town because it’s the biggest and the oldest still running. This flea market runs every Tuesday and Saturday, and it specializes in antiques and second-hand items like books, clothes, ceramics, and rusty knick-knacks, but you can also find more modern phone chargers, socks, and wearable and decorative arts. Looking for a doorknob, an army backpack, a broken tile, a bracelet clasp, and a bag of hash? Look no further.
Mercado do Jardim at Jardim da Estrela
Located in one of the loveliest parks in Lisbon, this crafts and design market is growing bigger every year even though it only happens the first weekend of each month. While it’s in full swing in the spring and fall, you can still find vendors setting up in the colder months and in the heat of the summer. These may just be the craftiest of the merchants out there, so it’s certainly worth the trip. Check out the handmade shoes, baby clothes, and decorative arts in particular. During the holidays, the market runs the first three weekends in December.
Flea Market at Avenida da Liberdade
Av. da Liberdade’s super-wide sidewalks host a regular antiques market every second weekend of the month. You can also catch it every fourth Thursday and Saturday from May to October. While the objects for sale can also be found at Feira da Ladra, this market somehow feels more upscale. Perhaps it’s because the tables are set up alongside the likes of Hugo Boss and Louis Vuitton.
Sacramento Handicrafts Market at Largo do Carmo
Just in front of the Convento do Carmo, artists and artisans set up shop every third Sunday of each month selling handmade items like soaps, rugs, handbags, picture frames, jewelry, and more. The kiosk here serves beer and wine as well as coffee if your companion wants to bail early.
Stamps and Coins at Ribeira Market
Sure it’s called the “Handicrafts, Arts, Books and Antiques Market,” but really it’s all about those ancient collectibles that someone in your family probably used to obsess over (or still does). Here, every Saturday, you’ll find that elusive escudo and an old stamp maybe worth a fortune. There are also some booths scattered about with handmade bric-a-brac, but that’s not necessarily what this market is known for.
Graça Urban Handicrafts Fair
There’s a new reason to make the hike up to Graça the last weekend of the month. This fair goes heavy on handmade jewelry, hippie chic, sustainable fashion, old ceramics, brightly-colored digital photographs, quirky illustrations, and inventive articles made with love by locals. The best part is, it’s set atop one of the loveliest viewpoints in the city.
The CCB Old & New Market
On the first Sunday of each month, you can find high-quality antiques, modern design pieces, fashion, plants, and of course, gastronomy at CCB and aside Praça Império. Shop here for locally-produced jams, hams, and cheeses, artisan jewelry, beautiful soaps, hand-carved wooden items, ingeniously designed conversation pieces, and even vintage cameras. Aside from great browsing, you can take advantage of discounts at the CCB box office of up to 30% off. In December, there’s a special holiday fair on the Sunday before Christmas at CCB.
Benfica Handicrafts Market
It’s certainly off the beaten path, but it’s worth the trip to Benfica to check out this more residential market. On the first Saturday of every month, on the Estrada de Benfica near Pastelaria Nilo, there are artisans, artists, and small producers selling everything from patchwork and crochet to the occasional rare vinyl. While it may be heavier on rag bags and ceramics, shopping along the tree-lined street makes the hunt a satisfying one even if you come up empty-handed.