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Izmailovsky Flea Market


Izmailovsky Flea Market directions
Looking for the perfect way to spend your weekend in Moscow? Then head straight to the Izmailovsky Flea Market where you could enjoy a whole day strolling about in the festive streets, browsing through the quirky memorabilia or buying gifts for loved ones back at home. Izmailovsky, located a short distance from the Izmailovsky Park Station, is an open air market located in the Izmailovo area of Moscow city. This craft market is a haven for the shopper, who can buy anything from knick-knacks to ancient Russian artifacts. Izmailovsky is said to have been named after the Izmalovo Royal Estate, which is a short walk away from the market. It goes by the official name “Vernisash”.

Today the Izmailovsky flea market is a bustle of activity, where hawkers and stall owners vie with each other to gain the attention of a shopper, rising decibel levels notwithstanding. Izmailovsky is a major tourist attraction, and you will find people from different nationalities strolling about in the market. The shopkeepers here are becoming increasingly tourist friendly and do not mind cash in dollars, should a customer run out of rubles. Though illegal, this mode of payment is followed by most shopkeepers, and you might even earn yourself a concession in return for the luscious dollars! The market is a riot of colours; with figures from Russian folklore adorning the streets, along with hundreds of shopkeepers displaying their wares on mats. A fake wooden fortress encases the market from all sides and within its walls, tourists and shopkeepers go about their business, even as street performers put up street shows for them.

Before you decide to indulge in some harmless shopping at the Izmailovsky flea market, it would be wise to understand a few features. A tourist must see the Izmailovsky experience as a treasure hunt, with a tug of war attached in the end. The endless stalls are full of interesting items, which entice the tourist. One needs a lot of patience to go through the immense collection of goods - right from Russian Matryoshka Dolls to Russian army belts and masks; traditional handicrafts to old cameras to kitschy jewellery. However, when you have decided to buy a particular item haggling for the price is but natural. Bargaining is almost a ritual here, with any self-respecting tourist and shopkeeper indulging in a verbal ping-pong over the price of the chosen good.

The Izmailovsky flea market is only open on weekends between 9 am to 6 pm. However, it is a good idea to get there early in the day. Afternoons in the market tend to get too crowded, with people jostling for some elbow room. Also, when visiting the flea market, be prepared to be bombarded by the enticing calls of stall owners, they tend too get too over-enthusiastic with their sales tricks.

Izmailovsky is a perfect place to shop for some kitschy traditional Russian items; and they make for perfect gifts to take home. When in Moscow, make sure to set aside a day for the Izmailovsky experience. Amidst shopping you could also sit and relax at one of the flea market joints for a Georgian Shashliki, or for a swig of the Russian Vodka and Cognac. It is the perfect way to relax, before beginning your quest at Izmailovsky for that perfect Russian artifact!

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Izmailovsky Flea Market

Izmailovsky Flea Market

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