The state of New York is not short on exciting things to do and experience. With all the other great attractions, the awesome flea markets in the state sometime take a back seat. However, once you have been to the Statue of Liberty and visited downtown Manhattan and Central Park, start adding some of these great flea markets to your site seeing list. Here are some of the 15 best flea markets New York State has to offer.
1. Brooklyn Flea – Brooklyn
One might get eye strain from reading about all the awards and accolades this fair has won since it opened in 2008. To sum it up, this fair is hard to beat. The fair runs April through November, operating in tow locations: on Saturdays in Fort Green and on Sundays in the Dumbo neighborhood. You will find vintage furniture and clothing, collectables from every decade, antiques from all over the globe, and jewelry and art from local designers. If you don’t go for the deals, then go for the food or the best view of the Manhattan skyline.
2. LIC Flea and Food – Long Island City
Located in Queens, this flea is worth checking out if nothing else because of its name alone. As the name implies, this fair offers good food, including a beer garden, with eclectic shopping booths. They also have special events like beer festivals and a music series. Many visitors discover this hidden gem after visiting the iconic Pepsi Cola sign, so follow the crowd to the market and be sure to get a “gramwich” (a gram cracker ice cream sandwich) on a hot day.
3. Washington County Antique Fair and Flea Market – Greenwich
On the first weekends in May and August, this fair boasts over 200 vendors from around the globe and shoppers that travel near and far to experience it. When you picture a traditional flea market, this flea market would fit that description. Held on the Washington County Fair Grounds, this fair features indoor and outdoor vendors selling unique, old, and traditional items that you would find at good flea markets. It can get crowded depending on the weather that weekend, but it is organized well. Visitors to this fair are rarely disappointed.
4. City Market – Syracuse
This market is very young (started in 2014) but it has quickly gained a loyal following. This market has consistently earned rave reviews from locals and visitors alike. Running May through October on the Second Sunday of every month, vendors from all over the state come to showcase their artisan talents along with vendors selling a piece of Americana from an age gone by. If you are anywhere near Syracuse during this time of the month, this is a must for great food and shopping.
5. Stormville Airport Antique Show and Flea Market – Stormville
This large, family-friendly flea market has gotten crazy busy since it was featured on the Home and Garden Television network (HGTV). Traffic is now much more of a nightmare, but be patient because it is worth it. The market is held once a month April through November, and with over 600 vendors, there is something for everyone. Make sure to barter for your items. They are expecting it and have priced their goods accordingly. The last fair of the season is called Christmas in November, and it features crafts and gifts perfect for the upcoming holiday season.
6. Madison Bouckville Antique Week – Bouckville
Just like the name implies, the Madison Bouckville fair is held once a year during a week in August. Over 2000 vendors are located along about a 1 mile stretch of Route 20 in central New York State. With the fair covering 14 show fields, you might need the whole week to get through all the vendors. There are some very high end antiques and collectables and items the average buyer can afford. It can get hot there in August, so come prepared. If you are looking for a good place to eat breakfast before heading out, try Suzi’s Place. You won’t be disappointed.
7. Antique World: Antique and Flea Market – Clarence
Antique World is a collection of antique shops open 6 days a week and closed only on Wednesdays. The flea market portion operates on Saturday and Sundays only. This is a big place and is spread out, with indoor and outdoor vendors and shops, so you will have to dedicate some time to tackling all of it. The vendors are friendly and really know their stuff. If antiques are your thing, then this one is not to be missed.
8. Chelsea Flea Market –New York
You will find items in many styles at the Chelsea Market, from art deco to mid-century modern, in price ranges to fit every budget. The fair is located on a fenced lot sandwiched between beautiful buildings and the Cathedral of St. Sava. Vendors set up their wares under rows of white tents. Admittance costs only $1, and the food is cheap and decent. With up to only 135 vendors, this fair is manageable when you have a couple of hours free.
9. Greenflea Market – Manhattan
If you get tired of strolling around Central Park or the Natural History Museum, head two blocks over and visit this market. Supported by the NYC Department of Education, proceeds from this market benefit local public schools. This fair offers a wide variety of items, including even artisan pickles. The market is set up outside on the playground of a school, but it also spills over into booths inside when they have extra vendors. The market is only open on Sunday, so plan accordingly.
10. The Market NYC – Manhattan/Brooklyn
The Market NYC has three locations: Nolita, Williamsburg, and Soho. Each location sports different hours of operation, so be sure to check their website before heading out. This market is popular for its unique and vintage clothing and accessories. Bring your wallet as most items are on the pricier end, but most shoppers are willing to pay to have the quality and unique items this fair has to offer.
11. Rock n’ Shop – Brooklyn
If awards were given out for the most unique flea markets, this one would surely be in the running. They tout themselves as being a one-of-a-kind entertainment, culinary, and shopping experience. Spend the day on Sunday taking in the free music, fabulous food, and artisan vendors this fair has to offer. They also have special events that include a live comedy show. This fair is a little edgier than most, but it is fun for all ages.
12. Hester Street Fair – New York City
Located on the city’s Lower East Side, this tiny market is known for its good food and unique local vendors. This is a great place to spend an hour or two. Stop by the Roll n’ Chill for a once in a lifetime ice cream experience. This year, they hosted a first ever “Girl Power Day” to celebrate women in the community, so next time it comes around, grab your daughter or girlfriends and go.
13. Hell’s Kitchen Flea Market –New York
You can either score big at this smaller market, or you could strike out. On one visit you might buy so much you need to rent a bus to get it home, and other days it a total bust, but that is part of the excitement. You never know what you are going to find here, and the possibility of landing that great deal on unique items keeps people coming back.
14. East Avon Flea Market – Avon
This flea market abides by the old adage that one man’s junk is another man’s treasure. You will find a variety of items, an eclectic mix of vendors, and customers from all demographics. If you are someone who likes to repurpose items, then this is your fair. The fair is held every Sunday, May through October and offers free admission. If you don’t see anything you have to bring home, you can kick back and enjoy the live music. This fair is on the smaller side; about 5000 visitors visit the fair each week.
15. Schaghticoke Fair – Schaghticoke
If you want to experience history, then this market should be a stop on your list. This fair has been in operation for 197 years. This has a “county fair” atmosphere and with visitors participating in pie contests and other exhibits. There are also rides, barrel races and horse shows, and agricultural events. This fair is held over a 6 day period and admission can be pretty steep depending on what you want to experience. If you want to do it all, you can get a 6 day entrance pass for $40 and have to shell out an additional $22 for an unlimited ride pass. If you want to just stop in for a day, general admission can be as low as $5-$11 dollars. People go to this fair more for the experience rather than the shopping, unless you are in the market for some livestock. Even if you don’t take home a treasure, the fun you will have will be worth the trip.