If Paris' weekly flea market scene revolves around the huge Marché aux Puces de Saint-Ouen and the Marché aux Puces de Vanves, there are also two smaller weekly markets that receive less attention than the big ones: the Marché aux Puces de Montreuil and the Brocante de la place d'Aligre.
Not as big as Vanves, but much more promising than Montreuil, the Brocante de la place d'Aligre is a place that flea market enthusiasts should add to their Paris shopping itinerary. Located in the heart of the Faubourg Saint-Antoine and close to one of the most charming and delicious food markets in Paris, the open-air Marché d'Aligre, this weekly gathering is a quiet and poetic flea market with a provincial touch.
The Brocante de la place d'Aligre offers a lively mix of items from around 40 small professional exhibitors and private sellers who bring boxes of various things set up on makeshift tables in the square next to the market.
As with all small flea markets, it's a good idea to rummage through old boxes and not just stick to what's on display. Most of the stallholders at the Brocante de la place d'Aligre are eager to sell, and shoppers can often be seen rummaging through the boxes on the ground in search of the best bargains. As a result, visitors can expect to find an old Polaroid camera from the 1970s or a dial telephone from the 1950s for less than €10. Specialised stalls in the middle of the square are filled with beautiful antique illustrations, drawings and photographs, all at a more affordable price. Of course, it is possible - and highly recommended - to bargain.
The crowds tend to thin out around midday as people head to the famous food market on Rue d'Aligre, with its fantastic selection of quality products at very reasonable prices. All in all, the Place d'Aligre is renowned for its variety, atmosphere and low prices.
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