This massive flea market, contained in two industrial warehouses and featuring some seven hundred stalls, holds the distinction of being the largest of its kind in Europe, and a magnet for deal-hunters from all over the world. Vending all that can be imagined, from clothes to furniture and antiques to jewelry, IJ-Hallen is open for only a single weekend on every month, and is best visited either early on a Saturday (before the best items have been seized), or shortly before Sunday closing, when the vendors, anxious to depart with as little baggage as possible, discount their stock and are most flexible to the suggestions of bargainers. If you love to haggle and have a collectors-eye, this is the market for you.
Address: T.T. Neveritaweg 15, 1033 WB Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Opening Times: One Saturday and Sunday of every month, 9:00 am – 4:30 pm (check website for exact dates)
Held every Sunday on the Spui Square, this well-established art market has been a fixture for over a quarter of a century. A popular destination for aficionados and connoisseurs, works may be purchased directly from any of the twenty-five-or-so local and international artists featured in a given week, without the additional charge of a gallery commission. With an emphasis on paintings and sketches, Artplein-Spui also showcases work from sculptors, glass-smiths, jewelry-makers, and mixed media artists. As it can always be counted upon to draw large crowds, Artplein has become a magnet for musicians and performers too, hoping to earn some coins entertaining shoppers. This means that the atmosphere at Artplein-Spuiis is always lively and fun, with the shouts of haggling mingling with the bang of drums.
Address: Spui Plein, 1012 WZ Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Opening Times: Sunday 10:00 am – 5:00 pm (closed in winter)
Famous as the center of Amsterdam’s book-culture, Het Spui is also the site of a weekly open book market, held on Fridays. With an abundance of everything from ancient hardbacks to rare art-books, Boekenmarkt is a great place to connect with shoppers and barter with merchants. And, as at any permanent bookshop, requests can be made, which you can collect from the market or even have mailed to you expressly. Because of its popularity among tourists, and the wide-use of English among locals, there is no shortage of selections in English. And with plenty of shops and cafes around, you can spend the whole day winding in and out of Boekenmarkt – who knows what you’ll find!
Boekenmarkt Op Het Spui, 1012 WZ Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Opening Times: Every Friday 10:00 am. – 6:00 pm
Upon approaching the Amsterdam Flower Market, or Bloemenmarkt, your eyes will widen and your jaw will drop – for nowhere else in the world is there a sight quite like this. As the world’s only floating flower market (the merchandise all being sold and presented along a range of wharves adjacent to the street), Bloemenmarkt operates everyday of the week, all year round. Perhaps the most fragrant and diverse flower market in the country, and a common resort for home-growers and horticulturalists, seeds, bulbs, and cut-works are available for purchase from any sort of plant and flower imaginable. Located on the Singel between Muntplein and Koningsplein, your nose will find this sweetly-scented floating wonder before your eyes do!
Address: Singel 630 to 600, 1017 AZ Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Opening Times: Monday to Friday 8:30 to 19:00, Saturday and Sunday 8:30 to 19:30.
Farmer’s Market on Noordermarkt
This farmer’s market operates on Saturdays from the Noordermarkt square in Jordaan, and features a dazzling selection of fresh and organic fruits and vegetables, fish, spices, dairy and baked goods. Founded in 1987, the market has only grown in popularity with the advent of numerous organic and ethical food movements, and is now the most frequented in the country. Surrounded by numerous shops and restaurants, Noordermarkt is a great spot to enjoy the local atmosphere. And with many of the stalls offering ready-to-eat lunch and breakfast foods, the best way to eat here is on the go.
Address: Noordermarkt, 1015 MV Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Opening Times: Saturday 9:00 – 15:00