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Top 10 Shopping Streets
From Journeys of a Lifetime: 500 of the World's Greatest Trips
Photo by Adrian Beesley/istockphoto.com


Photo: Grand Bazaar, Istanbul
Shoppers browse a carpet shop in Istanbul's Grand Bazaar.

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Top 10 Shopping Streets
1. Hell's Kitchen Flea Market, New York City
2. Plaza Dorrego, Buenos Aires, Argentina
3. Temple Street Night Market, Hong Kong, China
4. Patpong Night Market, Bangkok, Thailand
5. Chandni Chowk, Delhi, India
6. Grand Bazaar, Istanbul, Turkey
7. Navigli Antique Market, Milan, Italy
8. Dappermarkt, Amsterdam, the Netherlands
9. Les Puces, Paris, France
10. Portobello Road, London, England
 

Hell's Kitchen Flea Market, New York City
Once the refuge of poor Irish immigrants, this west Manhattan neighborhood now draws crowds to its bustling weekend markets. Antiques, collectibles, memorabilia, junk—all the flotsam and jetsam of the past is here. Mingle with designers, artists, celebrities, and actors. Afterward, head for one of the area's many ethnic restaurants.

Planning: A $1 shuttle operates between Hell's Kitchen Flea Market on 39th Street and the Antiques Garage/West 25th Street Market. 



Plaza Dorrego, Buenos Aires, Argentina
On Sundays visitors flock to the antique stalls of the Feria de San Pedro Telmo in Plaza Dorrego. The cobblestone streets around the square come alive with tango musicians and dancers, buskers, and puppeteers. Enjoy local food and watch the activities from one of the sidewalk cafés.

Planning: Sundays, from 9 a.m. or 10 a.m., until late afternoon.
 


Temple Street Night Market, Hong Kong, China
Soak up the atmosphere of Hong Kong after dusk with a stroll down Temple Street in Kowloon. Hundreds of stalls sell everything from arts and crafts to bargain clothes, watches, and electrical goods. Tempting aromas waft from the many food stalls and sidewalk restaurants.

Planning: The market is open from 4 p.m. to 11 p.m. 


 
Patpong Night Market, Bangkok, Thailand
This pedestrian precinct, awash with bars, sex shows, and massage parlors, is transformed into a busy marketing after sunset. If you want the latest imitation Gucci, Levi's, Nike, or Rolex, then this is the place for you.

Planning: Train to Sala Daeng. Beware of pickpockets. 
 
 
Chandni Chowk, Delhi, India
Plunge into the vitality of Asia's largest wholesale market. The air is pungent and elephants vie with scooters as you forge through the crowns to sniff spices, search for saris, cruise for curios, and go with the frenetic flow.

Planning: Take mineral water to ward of dehydration. Carry plenty of loose change.  



Grand Bazaar, Istanbul, Turkey
Enter the handsome Nuruosmaniye Gate (the Light of the Ottomans) to explore this endless warren of passages with mosques, banks, eateries, and more than 4,000 shops. Turkey's largest covered market offers traditional goods including carpets, jewelry, glazed tiles and pottery, precious metals, and objects made from fabulous materials such as alabaster and meerschaum (a high-quality hard white clay). Be prepared to bargain!
 
Planning: Zeytinburnu-Kabatas-Besiktas tram to Carsikapi. Closed on Sunday. Watch your wallet.  



Navigli Antique Market, Milan, Italy
Nestled among canals built to convey stone for building the cathedral, the once-poor area of Navigli is now a fashionable neighborhood with a lively nightlife. Wander beside the lazy waterways among cafés, art galleries, and craft shops in low buildings with thick wooden doors. You'll almost certainly see an artist at work in a bright colored courtyard. Large crowds flock to the monthly Sunday market with more than 200 stands selling antiques, bric-à-brac, and collectibles. Local shops, bars, restaurants, and several art galleries stay open on market day.

Planning: Between Naviglio Grande and Naviglio Pavese canals. Metro: Porta Genova. Tram 3 to Corso di Porta Ticinese. Last Sunday of the month, except July. 



Dappermarkt, Amsterdam, the Netherlands
Venture off the tourist track to the "true people's market," situated right in the middle of Amsterdam's multicultural area. Peruse an incredible diversity of clothes, food, and exotic goods at great prices on more than 250 stalls put up and taken down every day. 

Planning: Eerste van Swindenstraat: trams 9 and 14. 
 
 
Les Puces, Paris, France
Arguably Europe's largest flea market, Les Puces (the fleas) stretches on and on. Expensive antiques, jewelry, and upscale goods are indoors, but outside you can rifle for hours among the secondhand clothes, worn-out toys, obsolete electrical goods, vinyl records, and saucy belle-époque postcards. If you can imagine it, it's probably on sale here—somewhere!

Planning: Metro: Porte de Clignancourt. Watch your wallet. Don't hang around after dark. 



Portobello Road, London, England
On Saturdays, crowds pour into the world's longest street market, stretching for 1.5 miles (2.4 km) and selling an eclectic mix of antiques, second hand clothes, bric-à-brac, handicrafts, and New Age paraphernalia. A host of cafés, bars, arcades, galleries, and food stalls adds to the vibrant and cosmopolitan atmosphere. Europe's biggest street party, the Notting Hill Carnival, erupts in August when the area becomes a riot of color, music, and dance.

Planning: Underground: Ladbroke Grove (antiques) or Notting Hill Gate (everything else).


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