Visiting Israel and looking for a funky gift to bring home to family and friends? Look no further: the Jaffa Flea Market has got you covered.
The Jaffa Flea Market (Shuk Hapishpishim, in Hebrew) is in the center of the ancient port city of Jaffa – nowadays part of the Tel Aviv municipality — near the iconic clock tower.
The winding streets of the market are much less chaotic than in Tel Aviv’s Carmel Market, so it is the perfect spot to try some bargaining and take a little more time to shop around.
The stalls are filled with odds and ends ranging from Judaica to pillows and rugs to jewelry and used furniture. While some of the goods are beautiful and meaningful, others are totally random.
I took a trip to the market recently, and here are the four wackiest items I found.
Shelves of large multicolored globes are definitely an eccentric find. Multiple vendors at the flea market exclusively sell these perfectly painted globes.
I’ve been to major outdoor markets such as Carmel in Tel Aviv and Machane Yehuda in Jerusalem, but globes are an item I have yet to see at any shuk except in Jaffa.
If you make it to the flea market, I suggest taking a close look to admire the quirky yet beautiful designs of the globes.
Multiple shops in the flea market are covered from floor to ceiling with all types of lamps and lampshades. You can find every possible color, shape, size, and style of lamp with just one trip to Shuk Hapishpishim.
I’m not exactly sure how someone from abroad is supposed to fit a new lamp in their suitcase to bring it home, but it’s a super cool sight to see.
In a city where everyone is in flipflops heading to the beach, I never thought I’d see so many pairs of socks at once.
Walk two minutes through the market and you will see at least five tables covered in socks of all different colors and prints. Lovers of musical instruments, animals, or even hamburgers can find a pair of socks suited to their interests.
Sushi socks are not the gift I imagined bringing home, but I’m excited to rock them in the cold northeast USA weather.
Denim as far as the eye can see
Echoing my earlier thoughts, it was surprising to see crowded shelves and racks of jeans in a country where the average temperature for many months is around 80 degrees Fahrenheit.
Many of the vendors in the Jaffa Flea Market sell super cool vintage clothes, but those items are hard to find under piles of denim.
Jeans, jean jackets, jean shorts, jean skirts, and even jean dresses of all different colors are one of the most popular finds at the market, so if you are in need of some new denim, you know where to look!
The items at the Jaffa flea market might be a little crazy, but it is a must-see sight in the Tel Aviv area.
Besides its shops, check out Shuk Hapishpishim for great food and drinks. If you need a one-stop shop for a t-shirt, menorah, lampshade and beer, you now know where to go!
The Jaffa Flea Market is open Sundays through Thursday, 9-5 (Fridays 9-2). For more information, click here.