The Sunday market in Buenos Aires’ San Telmo neighborhood is one of the city’s busiest events. Every Sunday, hundreds of thousands of locals and tourists head to La Defensa avenue, where nearly 300 market stalls stretch over several blocks in the neighborhood.
Founded in 1971, it was originally known as the San Telmo Antiques Fair. There are still pockets of fascinating antiques to be seen, but the market has since developed into much more than that, with stalls that offer tourist trinkets, jewelry, wool scarves from Patagonia, handmade dolls, street musicians and performers, food and tango.
The oldest neighborhood in Buenos Aires, San Telmo still has cobble-stone streets and beautiful colonial buildings. Some buildings are well-preserved, while others are crumbling, but they all add to the character of this part of Buenos Aires. Even if you don’t visit the neighborhood when the market is up and running, San Telmo is a great area to visit. You can pop into the many antique shops or have coffee in one of the bars and cafes that transport you back to the turn of the 20th century.
Plaza Dorrego is a little square where tango shows are performed on market days. When there is no market, it is easier to sit and enjoy a cafe con leche and watch the world go by.
On Sundays, the neighborhood is packed from morning to late afternoon, when the market vendors begin the daily toil of carefully packing their treasures back up in newspapers and boxes. There certainly are treasures to be found here! Have a look at all the fun stuff we saw at the San Telmo Sunday Market:
Of course there is a lot related to tango…
And mate in many forms and colors…
Two of Argentina’s most beloved exports: Dulce de leche and Che Guevara
The San Telmo Sunday Market: Practical Information
The San Telmo Sunday Market is held every Sunday on La Defensa, starting at the Plaza De Mayo and ending at the Plaza Dorrego. It starts around 10am and wraps up around 5pm.
Take any bus or Subte (subway) to the Plaza de Mayo, where La Defensa begins.
Cash is king at the San Telmo antiques market!