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Posted on: Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Flea Markets and Factory Shops of South Africa

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Bruma Market

Bruma Market

Flea markets in South Africa are usually outdoor bazaars that allow a number of merchants to sell their wide variety of goods. These include jewellery, clothing, food, mementoes, accessories, music (sometimes illegal, so be sure to check it carefully), and much more.

Some of the items are widely available and low in cost (such as foam fingers, inflatable animals and flags), while others may be imported from places like Bali or India and are a little more specialised (and, therefore, expensive).

Regardless, the vendors often expect tourists to barter with them, offering them a little less than the asking price. Keep in mind, though, that this is their livelihood, and a desperation to sell may cause them to accept far less than what the item is worth. Don’t take advantage of this situation.

Green Market Square

Green Market Square

Factory shops are those that sell items in bulk or products that are slightly imperfect (for instance, the inside washing label may be torn out, or there could be a small stain on the item).

Factory shops sell directly to the public, and can keep their prices really low, making them a real treasure trove for the bargain hunter. Just check each item carefully to see whether there is something wrong with it (usually indicated by a colourful sticker where the fault is).

South Africa has a number of flea markets and factory shops for the budget-conscious shopper. When visiting flea markets, be aware of your belongings at all times. Crowded areas make for easy pickings, so be alert.

Here are some of South Africa’s best Flea Markets and Factory Shops:

Jozi Food Market

Jozi Food Market


  • Bruma Market – this is renowned as the biggest flea market in the entire Southern Hemisphere.
  • Panorama Flea Market
  • Hillfox Market
  • Rosebank Rooftop Market
  • Oriental Plaza
Essenwood Market

Essenwood Market

Cape Town

  • Greenmarket Square must be this city’s best-known flea market. Ideally located in the centre of the city amidst many popular Cape Town hotels and restaurants, Greenmarket Square has been an institution for decades. It is situated in the heart of the City Bowl and guarantees a half to full day’s browsing.
  • The Khayelitsha Craft Market
  • Oriental Plaza
  • Access Park


  • Church Square Market
Art In The Park

Art In The Park

  • Farepark Market

Port Elizabeth

  • The Beachfront Market
  • Art in the Park (on the first Sunday of every month)

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Amelia Meyer


Amelia is a freelance writer and editor with a passion for all things travel-related. She is based in Knysna, but has studied, lived and travelled further afield. She studied Film, Media and Literature at the University of Cape Town. She began her solo career in the form of Voxate Writing & Editing in 2008 and loves every minute of it. Amelia believes in silver linings, lessons learnt and the responsibility to do what’s right. When she is not writing, she can frequently be found at the local animal shelter, on the bicycle trails of the nature reserves or sampling new restaurants with her family.

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