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Naschmarkt - Flea market

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Visiting Naschmarkt and flea market

Published by Grgo Petrov — 4 years ago

Naschmarkt is probably Vienna's most popular and biggest market place which not only has numerous vendors selling all kinds of international and colourful offers for food but also a huge number of international restaurants. What is more, right behind the market place there is a very popular flea market that you should visit once!

Location & how to reach it

Visiting Naschmarkt and flea market

It is located in Linke Weizeile which enters Karlsplatz. It is right at the corner of the famous Secession (Art Nouveau) building. Since the market place is pretty big and long there are now several way to reach it depending on your location. Since I lived close to the Rathaus for me it was natural to start the visit and shopping at the top near the Secession building.

In general the whole place could be put between the metro stations U4 Kettenbrückengasse and U2, U3 and U4 Karlsplatz. Because people like explaining geography by using the U-Bahn.

Visiting Naschmarkt and flea market

Just simply use any of the metro stations because it makes no sense counting all the buses and trams that go nearby. U4 line has a pretty good accessibility by buses and trams and the metro station Karlsplatz is the biggest one in Vienna so no worries. Just go there and walk a few minutes until you reach Naschmarkt. You will notice that it looks like an island between the two side and roads of the Linke Weizeile avenue with lots of "boxes" that are the restaurants, fast food and stores selling everything.

If you are interested only in visiting the flea market (Flohmarkt) then I might suggest you leaving at the U4 Kettenbrückengasse as you will climb up right among the sellers and start your merry journey around.

Opening hours

The Naschmarkt is opened from Monday til Friday from 6 a. m. - 7. 30 p. m. which makes it even longer open than my favourite market place - Brunnenmarkt (which is of importance for the central-western part of the city). On Saturday you can find what you need from 6 a. m. till 6 p. m. That seems to be pretty fair.

Now, what is important to know about the flea market is that it is only being organised on Saturday. The flea market is open throughout the whole year and you have more than enough in one day to check everything. The opening hours are from 6. 30 a. m. until 6 p. m. You will have to pay attention to the opening hours in case of holidays. Then they work until 12. 30 p. m. But let's be honest - you are going to be somewhere else on holidays and not visiting the flea market.

Now that you know everything let me share a bit of the personal experience and what you get there.

Naschmarkt - the diversity of the offers

I believe most of you will start your journey at the market place at the beginning, the northern point you reach most likely from the Karlsplatz. And that was the way I would always go alone or with my friends.

You will instantly notice the huge number of international restaurants offering their special meals. There are many that look cheap and maybe of not good quality (which does not have to mean so) and those a bit more expensive ones. I have not been to any of them since I was loyal to Der Wiener Deewan but I wish I could sit at one of those. Anyway, you have there the choice to go through one of the two rows all along the way to its end and the beginning of the flea market.

During the day it can become pretty crowded with visitors and buyers, especially in the middle part of the market place where the vendors with meat, milk and green products are located.

In the first half of the market place you will find many closed stores and souvenir shops. And the symbol of the first half are the mentioned restaurants and shops to buy flowers and similar. You will most likely not get much here. There is one souvenir shop though I visited a few times with other friends in order to buy some postcards and they wanted the magnet and those kinds of things. The shops is situated in the second row to the west (or to the left on the map). You will notice it as you cannot pass by it and not seeing almost every product being turned into something related to Vienna. We would call it 'kitsch'. Though you might still find a little piece of something for your fridge or as a memory of Vienna. Made in China.

Food in your face

Now the fun starts. As you are approaching the vendors and the space between them (of this "street") becomes very narrow you are going to face two problems whereas one is a bit annoying. The annoying one (for me) is that the speed of the moving is going to decrease as there are hundreds of people trying to go in two directions, looking at the same time at the rich offer from both sides of the street. I always waited to come to the next opened area (relatively bigger) from those 'trader streets'. You feel uncomfortable if you stop as it would cause the problems with the others and create a traffic jam.

The second thing that I can only relate to Naschmarkt are the crazy vendors who are shouting all the time in all languages (with lots of mistakes) and literally trying to poke you in the eye with their products. You have to be careful when you are walking through as you will here "lieber herr / liebe frau, grüss gott! bitte schön, nehmen Sie bitte, probieren Sie bitte! " (hi, take please, try it please... ). A few times I took the food because hey - free cheese or something. In general, I do not mind this and it is the thing that makes the market place that what it is. The lively vendors are the souls of the market place and it is at least never boring.

While walking through the rows you will just notice the huge amount of colourful food and ingredients on the tables around you. There are lots of Middle-Eastern and Asian products and their kitchen. I remember seeing large portions of wasabi for the affordable prices and many other things I have honestly never seen before. In comparison with Croatia we do not have so many, if any (compared to Viennese), foreign vendors at our market places and there is no such international offer. And the prices are much cheaper than in the shops. So pay attention to it.

At the end of the market place I entered once an Asian store with lots of products from mostly China, Taiwan, Korea and Japan. I did not buy anything but could not help myself try searching for the familiar products I might have seen in Japan and... to read the Japanese script just for fun. Some products I wanted to buy were too expensive for my standard.

On the eastern side of the market place, along the road, there is usually no crowds as no one is selling any ingredients or something edible. However, there are several guys selling towels, t-shirts, caps and other parts of the clothing. If you are curious about these things give it a try!

And now we are done with more or less Naschmarkt. What comes afterwards is the...

Flea market - you never know what you are going to find

Visiting Naschmarkt and flea market

After hearing many legends and recommendations to visit the place by my friends the day finally came! I went for the first time there with my sister at the beginning of December. We were lucky that the weather was nice and sunny which also automatically meant there were going to be much more people selling and buying. Which meant more fun!

The flea market when crowded looks pretty wild. The first problem you are going to face is not knowing in which direction to go first. We did not want to leave something unseen and unchecked so planned to make a zig-zag moving around until we saw everything.

Visiting Naschmarkt and flea market

As you can see on the photo (this was another visit in the cold January and at the end of the day) it is really being visited at any time of the day despite the weather conditions.

One can find literally everything. What I was curious to see where were the little badges dating to the mid-20th century or earlier. Another thing both my sister and I had been looking for were the comic books and other attractive material that could have been of help to learn German. That is also one of the reasons I enjoy being at the flea markets as you can find also some useful stuff that the former owner did not need any more. But it could be of use to you and for a good price. We were lucky to stumble across one large pile of magazines and comic books of Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, Asterix & Obelix, Lucky Luke and some others. I did not want to miss the chance and grabbed a few examples and bought each of them for a euro and half. My sister found some very old black, white and red coloured newspapers which she could use for her design project.

Visiting Naschmarkt and flea market

Another thing that caught my eyes were the offers regarding the analog cameras. As I have one of them, Minolta, I was curious to see how much they costed here. Apparently it was a bit cheaper. I really wanted to buy some of the special objectives for my analog camera to take the landscape shots or the long distance once. But I had no money, had to keep it for the food.

Of the other interesting stuff there were lots of books, many glasses and badges, some figures everyone would find in the wardrobe of our grandparents, parts of the technique, kitchen cutlery, lots of clothes.

After making a circle we were pretty satisfied with our "hunt" today. Another problem was that once you are there even useless trash (and half of the things being sold were trash, respectively) start attracting and calling you to buy it. I managed to keep only the comics.

It takes about half an hour for relatively quick checking of everything. I stayed with my sister there for about an hour as we stopped by many to observe the exhibited stuff and read if possible.

In conclusion

If you like places such as flea markets then I recommend you to go there and at least count on being there for an hour. You will probably find something you like and buy it, that is just the general rules of these places. It is the joy and excitement looking at all the half-useless things found there as you never know if "a holy grail" is going to pop up somewhere and you have to be at the right place at the right time to notice it.

What I did not like is that if you are in rush (and I came there 2 more times in rush) you might just get bored or nervous of not finding what you want and you do not have enough time for the research. Then it all looks the same. Maybe the first time is always the best one so be sure to visit it when it is a nice weather and you have plenty of time. Another thing that makes the place easy accesible is the U4 station almost in the heart of the flea market.

Another thing you are going to enjoy at the flea market is the surroundings of the avenue. It is pretty broad here and you have nice old looking and colourful buildings. Typically Austrian - with renovated facades.

As for the Naschmarkt you will surely save some money by going there and expect to find probably all kinds of food and ingredients to experiment in the kitchen with you will also like the atmosphere there. Except for the crowded narrow "vendor streets". Otherwise it is interesting. And hey - if you don't want to buy anything you can sit at any of the bars or restaurants there. Karlsplat is few minutes away so no excuses!

Thanks for reading.

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