A series on Lisboa – Feira da Ladra

I don’t know what about you people, but there are some things I never do in my own country, and I always do abroad. Visiting an old church for example. Recently I had to visit a church due to sad circumstances. A beautiful church in a small Dutch village. I realized that I have visited many old churches in Italy,  Spain, or any other Mediterranean country, but never take a look at one in my home town, while there are many impressive ones nearby. Another thing I never do in my home town is visit (flea) markets. Yet when I travel, I always visit the market! And in Lisboa there is a nice one, called Feira da Ladra.

Feira da Ladra in Alfama

Feira da Ladra in Alfama.

Feira da Ladra means “Thieves Market”, as “ladra” is a female thief. The Feira da Ladra is a flea market you will find in the district Alfama, near the imposing churches Paróquia de São Vicente de Fora, and National Pantheon. Do not worry, this is not an illegal market as it used to be. Today, it is a nice flea market, visited by both tourist and locals, and many colourful people.

Feira da Ladra

Feira da Ladra – No shelves, it is all spread out on the floor.

On a Tuesday, or Saturday, between 6am and 5pm, go to the National Pantheon in Alfama, either by bus or tram. Around this impressive church there are many stands, selling everything. From (second hand) clothes to old garbage, or electronics, it’s all there at Feira da Ladra.

Feira da Ladra

At the flea market you can buy second hand clothes.

The products sold at this market are not suitable for everybody. As a spoiled guy, I am not interested in second hand clothing, or cheap sunglasses. But there are always nice little surprises. Like this wonderful camera stall in the picture below! I did not buy the brilliant camera on the photo, but it surely motivated me to visit some flea markets in my own country!

Old camera

Some old garbage is not garbage at all!

For me, visiting the market is not about the merchandise. It is about the people! Many different people visit this market. People who do not have much to spend buying clothes, people who just like markets, and also tourists, looking for a nice souvenir to take home.

Feira da Ladra

Tourists looking to buy a souvenir, like a shawl.

There is so much to see! A tourist and a salesman negotiating the price of a shawl, a rendez-vous of two close friends, the local drunkard singing a false note, and bargain hunter looking for a good price. There is plenty to love about the market!

Flea Market in Lisbon

Flea Market in Lisbon, it’s not about the market, it’s about the people.

Because Lisboa, just like Roma, is built on seven hills (A Cidade das Sete Colinas), the roads and squares go up and down. This is noticeable in Alfama too! Many restaurants have wobbly, leaning tables, because the sloping terrace. And at the Feira da Ladra, sometimes a stall would fall over, so a little rug will need to do as a counter.

Feira da Ladra

The slopes make it hard for some places to have “real” stand.

And at the end of the day, like at any other market, you might get a discount, if the exhibitor wants to get rid his/hers merchandise before heading home.

Sunglasses

Lost your sunglasses? Find cheap ones at the Feira da Ladra!

If you are in Lisboa on a Tuesday or Saturday, visiting the Feira da Ladra is a fun way to pass an hour!

Next week I will take you just outside Lisbon, for the final post on this series. I hope you enjoyed this weeks blog, and thank you for your time!

Kind regards,

Tieme

8 Comments

  1. Reply

    Like you, I mostly visit churches and similar sites in other countries but hardly ever in my own. Do we think the grass is greener / the churches are prettier somewhere else?
    As for markets, I’m not as lucky as you – the last few times I traveled I missed the markets due to them being moved to another day or me being in the right place but at the wrong time…

    • Reply

      Hi Kiki!

      Maybe the grass indeed is a bit greener, but I think we also do this because we’ve got usually only one change (or maybe a few changes) to visit that place when travelling. While at home we can go there whenever it suits us.

      Oh that’s a bummer! Having grown-up with a lot of sisters, visiting markets has been part of every trip 😉 Today I use the CityMaps2Go app to plan trips. This app suggested me to go to Feira da Ladra 🙂

      Have a great weekend! Hope the weather is good for more than a few days this time 😉

      Warm regards,
      Tieme

    • Reply

      Hi Diana! Visiting Feira da Almas wasn’t on my list since I didn’t know it! Is this at the market hall in Lisboa?

      Cheers!
      Tieme

  2. Pingback: A series on Lisboa – Estoril and Cascais | Luvo Photography

  3. Pingback: Ij-Hallen Flea Market in Amsterdam - Luvo Photography

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