Outdoor markets in the Algarve are popular with visitors and locals alike. Among the best are gypsy markets, which offer a fascinating insight into the area, as well as great deals on souvenirs and local artisan products – just be sure to arrive early to beat the crowds, and be prepared to haggle on prices. For a unique shopping experience, take a look at our round-up of the Algarve’s best gypsy markets.
Handbags, linens, food, ceramics, shoes, and a plethora of cork products are only the tip of the iceberg when describing potential souvenirs to be found at the Quarteira market, which takes place every Wednesday in this seaside town. If you’re interested in visiting, there are tour groups that leave from surrounding cities, as well as buses from different locations. Though the gypsy market is actually located on the northeastern outskirts of town in Fonte Santa, Quarteira itself is a great place to explore if you get overwhelmed by the haggling and bartering that are part of the market experience.
On the fourth Sunday of each month, Lagoa has its own gypsy and flea market called the mercado mensal (or ‘monthly market’). It is located in front of the venue space where Fatacil – one of the Algarve’s largest music and cultural fairs – takes place in August. The Lagoa gypsy market is also a good reason to explore another of Lagoa’s attractive features, namely its delicious wines best enjoyed with local dishes.
Why visit the Albufeira gypsy market in the Olhos de Água part of town, when there are so many others in the region? Well, one reason is that it’s located in Albufeira, one of the liveliest spots in the Algarve. The mercado mensal here actually takes place twice a month, on the first and third Tuesdays. There are also regular flea markets taking place across the different areas of Albufeira on the first Sunday (Olhos de Água), second and third Saturdays (Caliços), and fourth Saturday (São João) of the month.
The first Monday and third Sunday of the month sees a gypsy and flea market take place in Portimão’s Exhibition Park, home to the Portimão Arena. Portimão is one of the biggest cities on the west side of the Algarve, and is a popular area where there’s always something to do and see. Its gypsy market is near the water, making it not only a perfect location to relax and get away from it all, but also easy to find as it’s close to a number of bus stations as well.