Flea Markets in TUSCANY (Arezzo, Florence, Siena)
Arezzo flea market
Piazza San Francesco, Arezzo – First Sunday of every month and the Saturday before
The ancient Tuscan city of Arezzo, with its Roman ruins, medieval walls, Renaissance architecture and incomparable Piero della Francesca murals, has always been a magnet for art lovers. But on the first Sunday of every month, and the Saturday before, when its Piazza Grande is filled with a motley collection of old furniture, musty paintings and stained silverware, tarnished candlesticks and kitchen cabinets, chipped china and violins, Roman coins and a harmonium, old-fashioned telephones and grandfather clocks, it is a lodestone for connoisseurs and bargain hunters.
A one of a kind flea market
The monthly Antiques Market/flea market with its 500 exhibitors and about 100 little shops open all year round, is, since 1968, an added incentive to visit this art-laden city. The flea market takes advantage of the extraordinary scenery of Piazza San Francesco, Piazza Grande and the Logge del Vasari, but the stalls spread over the side alleys and squares across the historic center, transforming the character of the city for the two days of the Antique Market/flea market. For forty years the appointment on the first Sunday of each month and the Saturday before is a must for fans and curious: it has been estimated that each edition is visited by an average of 20,000 people, including, of course, many tourists.
The Antiques Market/flea market in Arezzo has been the first to have a lasting and regular success and it was in past years the scene of real hunting to the best pieces, even the day before the opening of the market when the best pieces were still packaged on tracks. Exhibitors come from all over Italy and offer their items with a very broad overview of cultural traditions and regional costumes. Besides the outdoor stalls, there are antique shops which are an old tradition in Arezzo.
The variety of items found in some shops reflects the same diversity that is found in the stalls: antique furniture, paintings, different fancy items not only for age but also for quality, mixed with no order leaving to the visitor the pleasure of discovery. But some other are the preferred destination for researchers and collectors, with selected pieces and great specialization: old books, scientific instruments, classical archaeology, antique archaeology, antiques & collectibles, antique bottles, liberty windows, art deco objects, jewellery, watches, silverware , 19th and 20th Century paintings, as well as furniture and old-time objects. Lately, coincidentally with the flea market, some initiatives like antique exhibitions and meetings have taken place, with qualified exhibitors proposing some selected pieces within prestigious galleries.
The offer is very diverse to meet the needs of the most demanding collectors and art lovers. But also non-connoisseurs will have the chance to enjoy the visit to the Antiques Market/flea market in Arezzo: they will find a great choice and also those who, with patience, will give explanations and assurances.
In recent years there was a major growth in the sector of restoration as well. This has helped, along with that of art historians which was already very active, the formation of an environment suitable for new initiatives: better preservation and enhancement of artistic heritage publicly owned that has ended up stimulating the Antiques Market/flea market itself. Numerous furniture restorers, thanks to their great tradition and experience, will be able to solve even the most difficult and complex problem.
The fame and respect, sometimes almost myth surrounding the most famous Antiques Market/flea market in Italy provide a constant presence of vendors in any season and anytime, without influence in the prices. The event, ideated and strongly wanted by the Aretino Ivan Bruschi, is the most popular and visited by Italian and foreign tourists, thanks to the scenery of an artistic and architectural landscape of enormous value.
Where: The historical town centre of Arezzo: Piazza San Francesco, Piazza grande, Corso Italia and the surrounding alleys.
When: The first Sunday of every month and the Saturday before. By train: Most trains going from Florence to Rome will stop at Arezzo. The market is just 10 minutes away from the station. By car: Once arrived in town follow signs for “Petri” car park. The escalator leads in front of the duomo in the highest part of the town centre, where the flea market is.
Other flea markets in Tuscany:
- Anghiari (AR) flea market, Historic Centre, (Tel. +39 339 1122355). Second Sunday of the month: furniture – antique and modern
- Florence flea market, Piazza dei Ciompi (Tel. +39 055 244677). Permanent market: antiques and crafts – Orbetello (GR), Historic Centre (Tel. +39 328 4885128). First weekend: furniture – antique and modern and collectables
- Lucca flea market, Via del Battistero (Tel. +39 0583 4422). Third weekend of the month: furniture and wood sculptures – Pisa, Historic Centre (Tel. +39 050 910111). Third weekend: antiques
- Pistoia flea market, Via Pacinotti (Tel. +39 0584 7951). Second weekend of the month: antiques
- Siena flea market, Piazza del Mercato (Tel. +39 0577 281619). Third Sunday of the month: antiques and collectables
- Viareggio (LU) flea market (Tel. +39 0584 962350). Fourth weekend of the month (except July and August): antiques and objects.
- Perugia flea market, Rocca Paolina (Tel. +39 075 5005110). Last weekend of the month: antiques and collectables
- Pissignano di Campello (PG) flea market, Via Flaminia (Tel. +39 0743 521030). First Sunday of the month: collectables, crafts, objects, furniture – antique and modern
- Terni flea market, Via della Rinascita (Tel. +39 0744401486). Second weekend of the month: small antiques and collectables.
- Todi (PG) flea market, Historic Centre (Tel. +39069044263). Second Sunday of the month: furniture antique and modern.
- Asolo (TV) flea market, Piazza del Mercato (Tel. +39 0423 55967). Second weekend of the month (except July and August): furniture, antiques, fabrics, clocks and objects.
- Padova flea market, Prato della Valle (Tel. +39 049 8205856). Third Sunday of the month: objects, multiethnic
- Treviso flea market, Borgo Cavour (Tel. +39 0422 419195). Fourth Sunday of the month: furniture – antique and modern, books and objects
- Verona flea market, Piazza San Zeno (Tel. +39 045 8030086). Third Saturday of the month: antiques and crafts.
How about you? Are there any Mercatini dell’usato (second-hand markets Italy) or Mercatini delle pulci (flea markets) which are among your favorites in Italy? Any of them you would recommend in particular? Don’t hesitate to use the comment section below to share your tips! We’ll add them to this review.