There’s no better way to get to grips with a city and mingle with the locals than by visiting a bustling market.
The city of Amsterdam is fit to bursting with them, boasting all manner of eclectic flea markets, food markets and everything else inbetween. Without any further ado and in no particular order whatsoever, this is our list of 7 of the best neighborhood markets in Amsterdam.
This busy, lively market in trendy de Pijp is one of the largest in Europe, open all week except on Sunday. You can pick up fresh fruit and vegetables, meat and fish, unusual spices, bunches of flowers and retro furniture items here, as well as poffertjes, kibbeling, and broodjes kroket – all Dutch delicacies, all not very good for you. Oh well.
You can buy everything from vintage clothes, fine antiques and decades-old vinyl to the freshest of fresh, organic produce at the once-weekly Noordermarkt in the Jordaan. Held every Saturday and packing a cheerful, neighborhood feel, the Noordermarkt is one of the smaller markets to be featured on this list, but it is perhaps the most charming. We recommend the mango and onion hummus in particular; eat some there, then go back and buy some for later.
Ten Kate Markt
Many tourists that wander through Ten Kate Markt do so simply to get to De Hallen, Oud West’s covered food hall and cinema. You should go there too, but only after exploring this bustling neighborhood market. Ten Kate Markt is almost like the Albert Cuyp Markt in miniature, with a couple of dozen stalls selling fruit and vegetables, cheap toiletries and fresh meat and fish to a mostly local crowd. Try a freshly-made Turkse pizza – you won’t find many better in all of Amsterdam.
We could list some of the items you can expect to find at the IJ-Hallen, but the chances are that whatever it is you’re thinking of, you’ll find it at this monthly flea market in Amsterdam Noord. That’s because the IJ-Hallen is the biggest flea market in Europe, a veritable treasure trove of antiques, arts and crafts and general tat that you definitely don’t need but really do want. Catch the boat (free of charge) from the back of Centraal Station to reach it, and enjoy the views!
There’s a lot to like about Dappermarkt, whether it’s the 250 stalls, the recession-busting prices, or the multicultural, neighborhood feel. Of all the markets in Amsterdam, Dappermarkt is perhaps the most culturally diverse; you can pick up Surinamese, Turkish and Indonesian goodies here, either to take home and cook or to eat there and then. Don’t just take our word for it: back in 2007, National Geographic Traveler listed Dappermarkt as one of the world’s top 10 shopping streets. It hasn’t changed much since!
Boekenmarkt op het Spui
Canal Ring / City Center
For second-hand books, rare prints and limited editions, you need look no further than the weekly book market on Spui. This market in the city center and just to the east of the Canal Ring plays host to around 25 knowledgeable book dealers every Friday and has done so for well over 20 years. Spui is also home to two of Amsterdam’s largest independent bookstores, so don’t worry if you forget to pack your Kindle.
City Center / Plantage
The Waterlooplein Flea Market is one of the oldest markets in Amsterdam, if not the oldest. The IJ-Hallen is bigger, but you don’t have to catch a boat to get to Waterlooplein; in fact, you only need to wander a few minutes east of the city center towards Plantage and you’ll quickly find yourself picking up everything from military paraphernalia to retro handbags and colorful (if dusty) lampshades.
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