Lonely Planet review
A Sunday morning at El Rastro is a Madrid institution. You could easily spend an entire morning inching your way down the Calle de la Ribera de Curtidores and through the maze of streets that hosts El Rastro flea market every Sunday morning. Cheap clothes, luggage, old flamenco records, even older photos of Madrid, faux designer purses, grungy T-shirts, household goods and electronics are the main fare. For every 10 pieces of junk, there’s a real gem (a lost masterpiece, an Underwood typewriter) waiting to be found.
Antiques are also a major drawcard for traders and treasure hunters alike with a concentration of stores at Nuevas Galerías and Galerías Piquer ; most of the shops open 10am to 2pm and 5pm to 8pm Monday to Saturday and not all open during El Rastro.
A word of warning: pickpockets love El Rastro as much as everyone else, so keep a tight hold on your belongings and don’t keep valuables in easy-to-reach pockets.