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Berlin’s Fleamarket Scene. Lazy Sunday Afternoons

Words: Jos Porath – Photos: Lena Aliper

Sunday is the day of rest?! Not so in Berlin. While the party crowd is still going strong, or else nursing their hangovers, sipping espressos and hiding behind dark shades, treasure seekers, bargain hunters and lovers of curiosities flock to the flea markets that pop up all over this mecca of kitsch and knick-knacks on the weekend. Something of a time-honoured tradition, many of the capital’s streets, parks and squares transform into bustling Wunderkabinetts that are a must-do for anyone after a unique gift (to others or self), or a souvenir of the best way to do Sunday strolling in Berlin.

While antiques, vintage clothes, GDR memorabilia, attic finds and someone’s-junk-another-one’s-treasure pieces still dominate, many vendors are also local artists, fashion designers or jewellery makers, offering a chance to snap up one-of-a-kind item particular to Berlin’s creative scene. With twenty plus flea markets to chose from on most weekends, the following top three picks showcase the best of what the barter-and-bargain scene has to offer.

Mauerpark

For those not shy of rubbing shoulders, the flea market at Mauerpark is a must-see. Berlin’s biggest and busiest flea market, this maze features everything from Edwardian nightgowns over formica coffee tables to oversized 1980s knit sweaters, and local designers and artists, and fresh food and drinks stalls to boot. Plan a whole day first scouting the goods, then hang out in the adjoining park watching bands, buskers and performers, or get involved in some open air karaoke.

Bernauer Straße 63-64, Prenzlauer Berg

U8 Bernauer Straße
Sunday, 7 am – 5 pm
Tram M10 Friedrch-Ludwig-Jahn-Sportpark

 

Arkonaplatz

A five-minute walk from Mauerpark, the flea market at Arkonaplatz is located in a leafy, residential part of town. A much smaller and more upscale/less digging through smelly boxes affair, browsing and shopping here has an almost bespoke quality to it. While the vendors finding, selecting, cleaning and repairing the goods on offer at this market is reflected in the prices, it can make for a welcome shortcut to finding pieces that are either in astonishing condition or have been lovingly restored.

On Arkonaplatz, Prenzlauer Berg

Sunday, 10 am – 4 pm
Tram M1/M12 Zionskirchplatz

 

Nowkoelln Flowmarkt/Kreuzboerg Flowmarkt

Berlin is becoming younger, hipper and more international by the day, and the flea markets most reflective of these exciting changes are the Nowkoelln Flowmarkt near the canal at Maybachufer, as well as Kreuzboerg flea market in the Prinzessinnengardens in the heart of Kreuzberg. Aiming to attract a younger crowd with a well-presented and priced selection of hip second hand items, trendy vintage pieces and timeless design objects, as well as top notch food and coffee stalls, the two markets are a great place to stroll, browse and people-watch.

Nowkoelln Flowmarkt, Neukölln

Maybachufer
Every first and third Sunday of the month, 10 am – 6 pm
U8 Schönleinstraße

Kreuzboerg Flowmarkt
Prinzessinnengärten, Kreuzberg
Every second and fourth Sunday of the month, 10 am – 6 pm
U8/Bus M29 Moritzplatz

Words: Jos Porath – Photos: Lena Aliper

 

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