Sunday, August 2, 2015

Paris Flea Market - The Largest Flea Market in the World

The Paris Flea Market in the Porte de Clignancourt area (officially called "Les Puces de Saint-Ouen" and has been referred as "Puces de Clignancourt" commonly) is a flea market area located in the Saint-Ouen area, northern suburb of Paris. It may sound far away from the Paris city centre but it is instead well connected with the Paris Metro system and within a reasonable walking distance (~30 minutes) from Montmartre/18th arrondissement.

Vintage style accessories can be found easily in the flea markets

Paris Flea Market Actually Hosts 14 Markets

Don't be surprised to learn that the Paris Flea Market itself is actually hosting 14 different flea markets across the Clignancourt area. Detailed descriptions of each market can be found here. (Also see map below)

I've spent a whole day in the area and had only visited 6 markets. The whole market can surely take up a full day or even more. (There is a swap meet/open area bazaar called Le Plateau near Boulevard Peripherique, people tends to skip that at all but I walked through it...nothing special there indeed.)

The open area bazaar, Le Plateau, where cheap garments are available

Inside Le Plateau

Getting There

By Paris Metro: Porte de Clignancourt(Line 4) or Garibaldi(Line 13)

Take the métro to Porte de Clignancourt on Line 4 (personally suggested this way because it is the closest metro station to the market area) and follow the crowds after the exit. Yes, just follow the crowds. I am not kidding because on the Saturday morning I was there, there was a sea of people flowing in the same direction after exiting the metro. So I was thinking "Hmm...this can't be wrong." Yep, I was right.

If you happen to arrive on a quiet day when there is no crowd for you to follow, look for sign of “Les Puces” (means Fleas in French) after you exit Porte de Clignancourt. You can also easily spot the freeway overpass along Boulevard Peripherique. The flea market area starts just across the Boulevard Peripherique.

On my way to Market Vernaison and spotted some sweet corns fresh off the trolley 

Before you plan your visit to the markets, I'd suggest to get yourself familiar with the location and description of each market with the help of this pdf leaflet.

Here is the map exact from the leaflet.

Pink/Magenta: Antique shops/stalls, open only on weekends (+ some stalls on Monday)
Purple: Antique markets for professionals, open on weekdays, some are by appointment only
That Brownish Colour: Markets for new clothes (Try to avoid Le Plateau unless you are interested in those cheaply-made clothes/ill-fitted iPhone cases/counterfeit Adidas trainers/Eiffel Tower keychains)

Opening Hour

Saturday 0900 - 1800
Sunday 1000 - 1800
Monday 1100 - 1700 (Note: Not all shops/stalls open on Monday!)

What To Expect There

Varieties of goods, from sky-high expensive vintage furniture, toys from early 1900s to cheaply made retro style necklaces and some poorly pixelated pin up girl reprints that would cost you 2. It really takes time to find the nice stuffs.

 Creepy bathing dolls from early 1900s (equivalent to the modern age yellow rubber ducks...)

 A small selection of letterpress lead type characters

Not working anymore, I assume

 Narrow alleys in Market Vernaison

 Vintage hand bind hardcover books

 Letters from the 1940s-60s

Pricey furniture just placed on the street causally


  1. What a fascinating place. Love the pics. Corn out of a shopping trolley cooked over briquettes... interesting! Did you try some?

    1. Nah...I didn't try but the smell was really really nice :)


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