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El Rastro

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El Rastro Review

Named for the arrastre (dragging) of animals in and out of the slaughterhouse that once stood here and, specifically, the rastro (blood trail) left behind, this site explodes into a rollicking flea market every Sunday from 10 to 2, with dozens and dozens of street vendors with truly bizarre bric-a-brac ranging from stolen earrings to sent postcards to thrown-out love letters. There are also more formal shops where it's easy to turn up treasures such as old iron grillwork, a marble tabletop, or a gilt picture frame. The shops (not the vendors) are also open during the week, allowing for quieter and more serious bargaining. Even so, people-watching on Sunday is the best part: for serious browsing and bargaining, any other morning is a better time to turn up treasures.

    Contact Information

  • Address: Ribera de los Curtidores s/n, Rastro, Madrid, 28005 | Map It
  • Metro: La Latina, Puerta de Toledo.
  • Location: Rastro and Lavapiés
Updated: 07-10-2013

Fodorite Reviews

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    El Rastro Review

    What fun! Rastro is no longer, primarily a bird and antique market; rather it's a full fledge flea market with an astounding array of real and imitation items.

    What your pockets and your little ones; there is constant contact and the crowds seem to move like the tide.

    Watch for the gypsies too; pan handling can be an art (not necessiarly needing reward) when done right. Good bargains abound; but don't expect high quality, just plenty of fun.

    by kcaJ, 10/29/09

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