The Encants Flea Market is a unique shopping experience in Barcelona. This flea market is one of the most important markets in Barcelona and one of the oldest in Europe. Built in a modern and singular site with more than 750 years of history.
A bit of history
The Encants Vells-Fira market of Bellcaire, known as “Els Encants”, was created due to the merging of two markets at the end of the 19th century. On one side was Els Encants, built in the 12th century and on the other, the Fira of Bellcaire, built at the beginning of the 19th century.
Els Encants market had different locations in the city. Firstly, at the beginning of the 14th century, the market was in front of Sant Jaume church, the actual Ferran Street. However in 1,391 it was moved to Voltes dels Fusters, next to the current Llotja de Mar (Pla de Palau zone), where it remained for nearly 500 years. The Fira de Bellcaire began outside the city’s walls in the Arc de Triomf zone but, between 1808 and 1814 it was moved to Las Ramblas.
In 1881 both markets merged and moved to the current Sant Antoni market. Although, due to the Universal Exposition in 1888, it moved again to Mistral Avenue. Moreover, in 1928 because of the International Exposition, it moved temporarily to Glories Square where it remained for over 80 years.
The current building stands out for its peculiar 24-meter-high cover made with mirrors. They literally reflect the market’s life. Also, the market preserves the essence of an outdoor market like it used to be.
Now it is a big open air flea market with a very bizarre mixture of items. You can find a huge range of products and second hand items like antiques, DVD’s, bicycles, furniture, clothes, tools or home appliances. Stalls are carelessly organised and there’s big cloths spread out on the ground to showcase the products.
The market still manages the auctions from 7:30 AM to 9:30 AM on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. The Encants Markets is the only market in Europe where you can find this method of sale, although its origin is rather unknown. However, public auctions in the Encants Market began around the XII century.
Find treasures hidden between loads of useless trash.
Tip: go very early in the morning.
Opening hours: Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday 7am-5pm. (With special antique auctions on Mon, Wed, Fri from 7am-9pm and 12pm). Saturday is the busiest day, packed with tourists.
How to get there
Metro Glories (L1) Encants (L2) Bus H12, V21, 92, 192
Tram Glories (T4, T5, T6)