As a former vintage shop owner and lover of all things secondhand I was delighted to learn that Amsterdam is home to Europe’s biggest flea market, Ij Hallen.
To get to the market all you need to do is jump on the free NDSM ferry from Central Station and once you’re over the water you’re practically at the front door and ready to shop. You’ll need to pay an entrance fee of €5, but if you pick up a few bargains like I did, it kind of makes up for it.
I have to admit I was slightly overwhelmed by the size of the market (and I love markets), so I would suggest allocating plenty of time to make the most it. The market is spread over a HUGE industrial warehouse, with an outside area to boot. Expect to find an array of treats from centuries gone by, from retro alarm clocks to vintage clothing. I picked up an incredible vintage Danish globe lamp for a mere €25 which now sits pride of place in my bedroom (and is still working).
If you’re feeling hungry (or in need of a beer) after all that shopping then you might want to check out the nearby Plekk. This bustling bar and eatery has been fashioned from shipping containers and boasts an ample outdoor area overlooking the water. It’s the perfect spot to relax after a busy day of rummaging.
To find out more and find upcoming dates check the Ij Hallen website here.