Visitors of Florence who have found accommodation solutions which imply self catering, as well as the ones who just want to sample more extensively the character of the city can always resort to visiting the markets of Florence or to attend to its fairs, combining usefulness with pleasure into a formula meant to complement the experience of a stay in the capital of Tuscany, and to discover new shopping opportunities.

Mercato Centrale

Mercato Centrale is the largest food market of Florence, stretching between Via dell’Ariento and Piazza del Mercato Centrale. The market is an inviting oasis of colors and flavors yielded by the countless food stalls, with products ranging from vegetables and fruit to dry goods and meat and cheese. Opening hours are, weekdays, from 7am to 2pm, Saturday from 7am to 5pm, Sunday closed, whereas from July to August, the market is opened until 2pm Saturday included. San Ambrogio Mercato (located in Piazza Ghiberti) and San Spirito Mercato (in Piazza San Spirito) are yet two other venues with a flourishing food trade, with opening hours from 7am to 2pm and 8am to 2 pm, respectively, Monday to Saturday.

Mercato di San Lorenzo

The most impressive nonfood market refers to the Mercato di San Lorenzo, opened everyday from 9am to 7.30pm, where products ranging from jewelry and clothing to leather goods are traded, occasional highlights being represented by designers’ accessories at fine prices. This street market can determine visitors to linger for hours in the midst of stalls, since the venue fills an overwhelmingly large area: Piazza San Lorenzo, Via del Canto de’ Nelli and Via dell’Ariento and other three smaller streets. One can only imagine the bargains they might snap up if daring to adventure in this maze replete with sundry sources of tourist thrills.

Mercato Nuovo - Mercato del Porcellino

Mercato Nuovo (otherwise referred to as Mercato del Porcellino or Mercato del Cinghiale), marked by the presence of a bronze statue rendering a boar, cast in the 17th century, is located nearby Piazza dell Signoria, more precisely, Loggiato del Porcellino, Via Porta Rossa, and it stands out as a rather tourist oriented venue, selling leather and straw goods, and chiefly gifts and souvenirs. Mercato delle Pulci, located in Piazza dei Ciompi (opening hours 9am to 7.30 everyday) and Mercato delle Cascine (more of a fair than a regular market) stretching at the cross point of Via Lincoln, Via Lecci and Piazzale Kennedy (operating only on Tuesdays, from 8am to 2pm) are also advisable, along with, say, Mercato di Fiori e Piante (opening hours 8am to 2pm) each Thursday and Mercato Mensile Antiquariato (a fair at the cross point of Borgo Allegri, Via dell'Agnolo, Piazza dei Ciompi and Via Martiri del Popolo) every last Sunday of each month, opening from 8.30am to 7.30pm.

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