Rastro street market

Price guide: Free

Calle Ribera de Curtidores, Madrid, 28005

Price guide: Free

Rastro market
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By Annie Bennett, your Madrid expert

I write for Conde Nast Traveller, .... Read more
#10 of 30
expert-rated things to do in Madrid
Expert overall rating:4.5 out of 5
Value for money:
Recommended for:
Backpackers / Students, Culture vultures, First-time travellers, Mature travellers, Singles, People watching, Shopping

Expert review of Rastro street market

Sunday mornings and a trawl around the Rastro go hand in hand in Madrid.

The Rastro is a real institution and has been going for more than 400 years. The Ribera de Curtidores is the main drag, starting from Plaza de Cascorro, but the surrounding streets, particularly around Plaza General Vara de Rey, are more interesting. The streets are lined with stalls and shops selling clothes, bags, rusty old keys, sunglasses, furniture, shoes, books, kitchen stuff, paintings and all manner of old junk. The name Rastro comes from the fact that there used to be an abattoir here, where animals were slaughtered in the early hours of the morning, then distributed to the butchers' shops around the city. Rastro means 'trail', and refers to the trail of blood that used to be left down the street. There are lots of little bars for tapas and beers along the way, and it is customary to go for a long, late lunch afterwards.

Expert tips: 
Pickpocketing is rife in the Rastro. Don't take a bag if you can help it, and keep your cash in a place that's hard to get at.

More information on Rastro street market:

Price guide:
Market / bazaar, Neighbourhood / street
Calle Ribera de Curtidores, Madrid, 28005
Months open:
All year round
Opening times:
Sundays & holidays approx. 9am-3pm.
Free tags / Keywords:
Flea market

Have you been to Rastro street market? Would you recommended it?