Mercat Encants Vells
Students' Corner

Barcelona's biggest, oldest and most authentic flea market is the Els Encants Vells (The Old Charms), held in the Plaça de les Glories. This sprawling flea market is a hive of activity, as folks loudly hawking their goods are accompanied by street performers dancing and doing magic tricks, food vendors, the all-too-convincing "live statues" and a mix of locals and tourists rummaging through the stalls.

This particular flea market dates back to the 14th century and today serves as a lasting remnant of Barcelona's legacy of trade and commerce. Here you can literally find everything: antiques, old CDs and videogames, new and second-hand clothes and toys, framed artwork, furniture, camera parts, ceramics... The list of both treasures - along with junk - to be found is both endless and unpredictable.

The Els Encants Vells market is held on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays. While it's meant to be an all-day affair, many vendors close up shop come early afternoon and the goods have already been picked over. Our suggestion? Get there early to peruse, rummage, sift and haggle your way through the noisy stalls and throngs of bargain-hunters... You never know what you'll come home with!

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