Flea Market: 20 best flea markets in France (2017 update)

Intro

A visit to a Brocante (a French word for flea market) can be the highlight of a trip to France: a lively encounter with everyday French culture, an exciting way to spend a few hours, and a chance to pick up a unique souvenir or add to a collection.

Each year more than 15,000 flea markets and garage sales across the country, gathering crowds of fans and onlookers in search of a bargain, a rare item, a decorating idea or a souvenir.

We selected below 20 of our favorite flea markets, with a mind to diversity in location, price range and wares. But these are just a start. Enthusiasts may also wish to check out the top 7 largest periodic flea markets & antique fairs known as “vide-greniers” (basically, “emptying the attics”) that take place on a less frequent basis in communities across France.

Discover now our flea market listing and brocante directory of the best flea markets to visit in France! And don’t miss the chance afterwards to have a look at our ranking of the Top 15 Flea Markets in Europe You MUST Visit in 2017. Enjoy the reading!

Bonus: Flea markets of France on a map!

You can now visualize the best flea markets and antique fairs in France on a map! Not only have we included all the below flea markets, but we’ve added to the mix some of France’s most acclaimed antique fairs. Just click on the image below to access our map feature for free.

flea market map France


** IMPORTANT **

This review has been divided into 6 pages to make it easier to jump quickly from one page to the other. By clicking on any of the link featured in the table of Contents below, you’ll be able to land directly on the page of your interest. You can alternatively use the “Continue” link, featured below the sharing buttons, to load the next page.

49 comments

  1. Rich

    Wow, this is cool. I never considered visiting a flea market on a trip but I can see how it would be a very memorable cultural experience. Thanks for sharing this great list. A little map showing them would also be awesome if you could.

  2. Andrea Kirkby

    Vanves is good, and while the prices are generally high I have found one or two real bargains there, as well as a couple of really lovely stallholders who are always ready with a joke and a smile. However Montreuil has come down in the world; there are only a few good antiques stalls among a sea of cheap clothing and mass produced cooking pots. A few bargains can be found along the rather seedy alleyway leading to a pedestrian bridge over the peripherique, but it’s pretty depressing.

    • Hi Andrea! Thanks for sharing your experience of flea markets in Paris. You’re right: Montreuil isn’t anymore what it used to be and good stalls are scarce; If one had to choose between Clignancourt (St Ouen), Montreuil and Vanves, I’d totally recommend the latest: While Montreuil doesn’t have much to offer anymore (in comparison to the other two) and Clignancourt is a bit overpriced, Vanves remains the ideal place for great flea market hunting and bargaining. I can’t count the amount of great pieces of furniture (two Bertoia Wire chairs, one I. Nogushi table), deco item, paintings (even a Kisling!), jewelry I’ve found there. And i never went broke! ;)
      Any other flea market in France you’ve had the chance to do? Here’s another listing of great flea markets to do while in France: http://www.fleamapket.com/location/france/

  3. William Jeong

    Hello, I’m a Korean university student who want to explore, introduce flea markets in Paris to Korea. It won’t be a just simple introduction. I want to find the way to improve Korean flea market by experiencing flea markets in Paris. The most important thing is to find professionals, professors, some organizations. Take care. :)

    • Hi William, thanks for your message! What are you looking for exactly? Some tips & advices on how to best experience flea markets in Paris or for someone who could actually take you around Paris to experience this live? Speak soon :)

  4. LLL

    I would be interested to know what it would entail to open a stall myself in one the the smaller flea markets, what are the rules and regulations. Can anyone help? many thanks

    • Hi LLL, thanks for asking this very practical question indeed! First, you will need to find the nearest garage sale to your location; in order to do so, you can visit http://www.vide-grenier.org, a site that lists all flea markets in France and in Paris. From here you will be able to book a place by filling a registration form, providing a photocopy of your ID, along with a deposit check, ranging generally from 7 to 15 euros per meter. Keep in mind that every flea market has its own regulations, particularly in Paris where opening a stall is generally limited to professional sellers. In St Ouen (Clignancourt) for instance, occasional sellers can apply directly to the Town Hall/City Council of Saint-Ouen (Theodora Louttelier, assistant market, which will guide you through the steps to follow: +33 149181455) for a shopping licence. First come, first served according to availability!

      Your application will then be subject to a vote led among a commission which will decide whether or not your items deserve to be exposed.

      Another practical resource is the SPAM (http://www.spam.fr/), which stands for “Société Parisienne d’Animation et de Manifestation” This company organizes professional flea markets and garage sales in Paris and outside of Paris.

      Good luck!

  5. Z Master

    Hi. Good review. Makes an interesting read. Just got me thinking if it would be worth visiting a French Market for luxury bags. My wife loves vintage Hermes, Chanel & LV bags. Would make a good little holiday and also buy a couple of bags for my wife. Are there any good Vintage Fashion Markets in France? any help, advice, guidance… welcome.

    • Hi Z Master, I’m happy that you find this review useful! As per (vintage) luxury bags like Dior, YSL, Hermes, Chanel or LV, it’s true that the best place on earth to find them (I’m talking about original items), is in France. However there are a few things to keep in mind while shopping for vintage bags:

      #1. Whatever the flea market or vintage fair, real vintage luxury bags are hard to find. It’s somehow like going on a treasure hunt ;)

      #2. Beware of cheap copies of luxury bags: sorting real vs. fake requires a pretty good knowledge of a brand in particular.

      #3. Don’t be afraid to buy a damaged Chanel bag if you know for sure it’s authentic. You will be able to take your bag to the “Chanel Spa” and they will do everything from re-dyeing your bag to restitching or even adding new hardware. Just go to any Chanel boutique, and they will send it off for you to get fixed. Of course it’s going to cost you but they do an amazing job. It’s a long process (it can take up to 3 months to get your bag back from the spa) so if you just have a loose stitch or maybe a small mark on the leather, a lot of shoe repair shops also do handbag repairs and they can take care of the smaller less Chanel specific fixes (like dyeing the bag or adding new hardware).

      #4. Fake bags do have hologram stickers and authenticity cards but one trick is to google the serial number that is given (all good sellers will have a picture of the serial number within the bag). A lot of the counterfeit bags use the same number and the search results will pretty much tell you it’s fake as there are many well known fake serial numbers that are being used. If even just one other bag shows up in your search with that same number, you will know it’s fake. (just do a google search of “Chanel bag 7244764” and see what pops up.)

      Vintagefashionclub.com put together a detailed review on how to identify a real luxury bag vs. a fake one “How to Buy Vintage Designer Handbags and Be Sure that it’s Authentic…”): http://www.vintagefashionclub.com/vintage-designer-handbags.html

      I hope this information will be helpful :) Happy thrifting time in France!

    • Hi Marianne,

      That’s a very good question! Once you found a good bargain, and if you don’t want to bother carrying it around with you during the rest of your trip, there are different solutions available. Of course, picking the right shipping company will depend on the size of the item you want to ship. While FedEx, UPS and TNT have offices all over Europe, they are usually pretty expensive when it comes to shipping bulky items overseas. In case you bought a piece of furniture or voluminous decorative objects you want to ship back to your home, companies like uship.com are good options. uShip is an online marketplace where you can list anything you need shipped or moved, and receive bids from thousands of feedback-rated carriers – many of whom are using extra cargo space. The procedure is pretty straight forward:
      1. List Your Shipment
      2. Choose a carrier based on feedback and bids
      3. Contact the carrier & complete transaction
      uShip is one options. And if you browse the web, you will be able to find other services just as good and cheap, like http://hedleyshumpers.co.uk, http://www.chudleyinternational.com or http://www.shipsms.co.uk/antiques-fairs.
      Don’t hesitate to share your shipping experience with us. Other people might benefit from it too :)

    • Hi Amit,
      Could you provide the name of the author of the picture and I’ll feature it with a © sign. This very image is available as “creative commons” on hundreds of wallpaper sites like yours; so I’d rather give the author’s name, than any random wallpaper website. This would just be unfair to mention your website, and not the 999 others ;) Thx!

    • Hi Duane! Well, generally speaking, silverware and flatware can be found at Porte de Vanves Flea Market or Clignancourt/St Ouen. Since Clignancourt harbors high level antiques merchants, you might end-up paying a pretty fee for things you could also find at Vanves. So I’d try with Vanves first, and then head to Clignancourt to check for more.

  6. Aled

    Hi

    Planning a trip to Toulouse and Montpelier on the first weekend in May, is the Montpelier Saturday flea market any good? Also ant recommendations for between these two places ?

    Thanks

    Aled

    • Hi Aled! If you’re going to Montpellier, we’d recommend you to stop by the Place Royale du Peyrou which hosts a flea market every Sunday from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. (40 to 80merchants selling antiques and vintage). Here is a video (in french, but I’m sure you’ll get the spirit nonetheless) which was made on the Peyrou flea market: http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x23nkck_dimanches-du-peyrou-vintage_webcam

      The Marché aux Puces de la Paillade (Espace Mosson), the oldest and the biggest fleamarket of Montpellier, welcomes once a week up to 400 merchants (6 am to 1 pm). This market however has lost some of its shine: today it merely sells second hand clothes, shoes & bikes. Nevertheless it is possible to find something, but you must be dogged fan and look hard. Worth to tick it in your list, but do not hope to dig a hidden gem in this trash.

      I’d recommend instead the “Brocante des Allées” located in the Allées François Verdier in Toulouse: yes it’s a bit pricey compared to the Place Royale du Peyrou, but you’ll find a lot of variety as well as items of quality (120 antique dealers & flea merchants). The only drawback is that this flea market only runs once a month (first friday, saturday and sunday of the month, from 7 am till 6 pm). So if you’re planning to go there on the first weekend of May, that’d be perfect!

      In Toulouse, the “Marché aux puces Saint-Sernin” runs all year long on Saturday and Sundays (7 am – 1.30 pm): 200 to 300 stalls. Worth a look if you’re already in Toulouse :)

    • Hi Nicola, most flea markets in France host merchants who sell lamps and mirrors. However, if you’re looking for top quality items (which come at a price though…), I’d recommend you to go to St Ouen/Porte de Clignancourt flea market.
      The overall venue spreads over 15 km (10 miles), and features more than
      2,000 shops and a dozen independent flea markets with their own
      products, prices and different styles from high-end antiquity, to
      clothing and modern accessories.

      Here, you can browse the venue by market or by products: https://www.fleamarketinsiders.com/paris-saint-ouen-flea-market/

    • Hi Leo! Generally speaking, each market has its own set of rules when it comes to trading regulations (space reservations, cost, insurance, unpacking/packing time, size of stalls, type of merchandise allowed/prohibited, and so on). Some of them have a website, or a least an email/phone number, so you can verify what the pre-requisites are. I would recommend to get in touch beforehand with the organizers of the market you’re interested in.

  7. Samantha Jones

    Hi, can you suggest any near Calais? We are hoping to pop over for a weekend day trip and would love to come back with some wonderful finds!

  8. Sarah

    Hi
    We have recently bought a property in the Charente region and we would like to visit a flea market in that area for furniture, can you recommend anywhere. We are next due to visit in May .

  9. Nat

    Can anyone recommend the best fair for buying vintage kids toys from the 80s and 90s? Are there any specialist retro or collectors toys fairs, or am I best just looking for small collections from private sellers? Thanks :)

  10. Donna C

    I will be in Prague, Croatia, and several cities in Italy mid July to mid August of this year. In Italy we will be visiting Venezia, Bologna, San Marino, Assisi, Perugia, Sienna, Chianti, Modena and Verona to name a few. I would love to find some antique oyster plates and some antique maps while I am there. Are there some flea markets that would have these collectibles? Any suggestions on great markets would be very helpful. Thank you so much!

  11. Muhammad Rezaul Haque

    I’m actually looking for someone who is interested in importing T-shirts of low price mainly of sto ck lot from Bangladesh. These are solid color of 160 gsm in 6/7 colors. Plz feel free to ask me any questions.

  12. Georgia

    Hi, thanks for the great information, I’ve been trying to do some research on French flea markets as would like to go over with the aim of finding good priced vintage furniture. Are there any markets you would recommend just for this? I would be looking to drive over, entering at Calais but don’t mind driving for a few hours. I would be so greatful for any advice you could give :)

  13. Find Price

    Hello everyone,

    We propose a new price comparator for all your second-hand items,
    useful to buy or sell second-hand or verify if you well go to purchase one in flea market.
    With http://www.find-price.net you can look for the new or second-hand items prices on
    sale or already sold to know the real selling price.

    The idea came from the need to follow the price of some
    collectibles like trading cards, legos or video games. No price comparator gives
    you the price tendency trend or the average price quickly, and even less for second-hand
    items. The current price comparators work especially for the new goods or the
    services. We thus answer the lack on the second-hand market mainly.

    To allow the users to obtain a price the closest to the
    reality and to what they look for, they have the same search options as on
    eBay. The results are shown as trend and table. Users can delete the results which
    they consider as relevant, the average price is recalculated automatically.

    One of the main interests of the tool is to rely on already
    realized sales to give the real market prices, decided by the buyers and not
    the prices based on the sellers will.

    Good searches to all.

  14. Christoph Oberlechner

    Hi,
    I’m planning to go south of France (Toulouse, Montpellier) at the end of November / beginning of December. Mostly I’m looking for second hand records. Do you have any experiences where to go best for vinyl?

  15. Lisa keates

    We are going to Paris midweek mom to fri and I’m desperate to go to at least one flea market while I’m there … Gutted they all seem to be on a weekend , can anyone advise me to any in midweek ??? Thankyou

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *