If you want to go a little of a beaten track and mix up your cultural program to have a little rest from multiple museums, palaces, and parks, then try visiting flea markets where locals and tourists search for the unique things and food markets — with some greatest national treats.
Udelnaya Flea Market
This is the most famous and popular flea market of Saint Petersburg; its history starts from the 19th century; later, during the period of the total deficit, people believed that everything could be found on the Udelnaya Market. This market is sometimes rated as one of the top ten most famous flea markets in the world so it is a must-visit for antique lovers and history fans.
Antique porcelain and ceramics, ancient books and magazines, Soviet symbols like flags, pins, and posters; military decorations, ancient homeware — this is not even half of the list. More than 1 million items on the 2 kilometers of the open space — isn’t it an option for spending a day in Saint Petersburg?
Let’s start with a strange fact: this market used to be an execution place in the Emperors’ times. But let it not scare you: today you with find there only a big space with multiple farm production: fresh fruit, vegetables, berries, fish and meat, species, honey, cheese and chocolates from Russian factories.
Inside the market, there is a café that serves perfect shashlik — if you are not a vegetarian, this Azerbaidjan place is highly recommended.
This is a big open-air flea market, located at the entrance of the Unona Fair. It works only during weekends from 9 a.m. and locals mostly come here to find the best prices for the items like construction tools or musical instruments. However, the choice is much wider, and you will easily find here Soviet tools, vinyl records, antiques from different periods. Among them, there can be found some unique items.
This flea market is a must for numismatists: local coin collectors are always waiting for a profitable deal. It is better to arrive at the market early in the morning, as the most interesting items are usually sold out very quickly.
Garage Sale in the Etagi Loft Project
Etaji is a sale and creative space located in the heart of Saint Petersburg, not far from Moskovskiy Railway Station. It has plenty of shops, showrooms, and small cafes and organizes regular fun events.
One of such events is the Garage Sale; the date is announced beforehand and can be checked in the social accounts of Etagi. The format of garage sales is still not so typical for Russia and that is why the sellers are mostly the youngest citizens of Saint Petersburg.
You will not find exclusive rare items or antiques here, but if you love handmade and second-hand clothes, this is the place for you. There is an entrance fee to the Garage Sale event; however, there is a strict rule, which says no item can be sold for more than 1 000, RUB. Sounds like a bargain, doesn’t it?
Garage sales are also organized in Sevkabel port, the entertainment space in the harbor of Vasilievskiy island. It doesn’t have any restrictions regarding the item's price so you can buy many exclusive and expensive things here.
Some time ago, locals used to consider Kuznechnyi Market the most high-end food market in the city. Fresh products are delivered here from the farms of the Leningrad oblast and each seller carefully looks after the quality of the goods.
Today, some people claim that Kuznechnyi Market is not like it was before anymore. However, it is still actively visited by tourists and locals who are longing for fresh food of the highest quality. In addition, it is located in an interesting building, which attracts architecture lovers. Prices are higher than the average, but in most cases, they are worth it.