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early morning markets, nescafe azera

Early trading

The early bird catches the deal, so bring your Nescafé Azera Coffee to Go and snap up a bargain at these morning markets

By Time Out in association with Nescafé<sup>®</sup> Azera<sup>®</sup> Coffee to Go
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Columbia Road Flower Market
© Rob Greig

Columbia Road Flower Market

Shopping Markets and fairs Bethnal Green

This colourful, friendly flower market opens at 8am, but given that it only takes place on a Sunday that seems plenty early enough. The street is cobbled and narrow, so throngs of locals and tourists crowd the stalls from as early as 9am. Get there as the vans are unpacking and you'll have space to browse and your pick of the most beautiful blooms.

Sunbury Market

Sunbury Antiques Market

Taking place every other Tuesday morning further west than Hampton Court, this vast antiques market takes serious commitment but is so worth it. Arriving any time after 7am will see you queueing for a parking space and missing out on the best pieces, so go at the crack of dawn and bring plenty of cash – the onsite machine has usually run dry by about 10am.

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Billingsgate Fish Market

Shopping Markets and fairs Isle of Dogs

On Lower Thames Street since the sixteenth century, Billingsgate Market moved to its Docklands location in 1992, but most of the 150-odd species it sells – the UK’s biggest choice – come from much further afield. It‘s open from 4am to 8am and shoppers can buy fish and shellfish direct from the 40 traders on site. Arriving at around 7am will give you time to browse before bartering for the remaining boxes.

Princess May Car Boot Sale

Shopping Music and entertainment Dalston

You don't need to get up at dawn to buy cool stuff at this varied car boot sale, but queues for a selling pitch start forming at about 6.30am. Walk-in pitches cost £10 and the market's open to buyers from 9am to 2pm – plenty of time to sell your old clothes, housewares, records and whatever else you feel needs a new home. Make sure to bring a stall buddy so that you have backup when you want to browse. Or need a bacon sandwich.

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Smithfield Meat Market

Shopping Markets and fairs Farringdon and Smithfield

You're buying from the real deal in Smithfield, a meat market that's been trading for 140 years. It opens at 2am but visitors (as opposed to wholesalers) are advised to arrive at 7am. The butchers are happy to offer advice if you’re not sure which hunk of meat you’re after, and nearby pubs will be open should you fancy a nice refreshing 8am pint.

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