Perhaps the Los Angeles area’s most iconic flea market, this event around the exterior of the Rose Bowl is staggeringly colossal—but what else would you expect from a 90,000-seat stadium? The sheer size and scale of this market means that it encompasses multitudes: new and old, handcrafted and salvaged, the cheap and the costly. On the second Sunday of each month, an odd mix of vendors populates the loop around the stadium: for every eye-catching artwork, there's a ratty $5 T-shirt, and for each elegant craft there's a competing "as seen on TV" demo. But you may have more luck in the rows and rows of old furniture, albums and vintage clothes and accessories that fill the adjacent parking lot. There are plenty of duds, to be sure, but come out early enough and you may go home with that perfect purchase. This destination flea market attracts bargain hunters, collectors and antique aficionados from all over the county, so the organizers have instituted a tiered entry/admission system, allowing professional and dedicated shoppers early access at a premium.
There's nothing better than perusing wares and hunting for treasures at a classic flea market. Los Angeles, luckily, has a ton of them, offering everything from vintage clothing to record store surplus, kitschy kitchenware and custom-made furniture. There's often food, drink and music to boot—as well as a sense of community, where you can meet collectors, see and be seen, run into friends and meet new people. And though they’ve been stuck with a decidedly off-putting name, these open-air, ragtag gatherings of disparate vendors have remained some of LA’s preferred shopping experiences for decades, thriving by taking advantage of the city’s temperate climate and endless array of parking lots. Long live the flea market! Los Angeles and the surrounding area is home to ten of our favorites, listed below.