Each Sunday from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., the Alemany parking lot (right off the freeway split from 101 to 280) just outside the city, hosts the most impressive of flea markets in the Bay Area. With a strict policy to prohibit any new merchandise, the market becomes a vintage treasure trove, packed to the gills with 1940s-80s clothing, furnishings, records, books, and plenty more.
What you'll find:
Because the Alemany Flea Market requires 55 percent of its vendors' stock to be vintage or antique goods, you'll find racks upon racks of pristine vintage clothing from the late 50s, 60s, and 70s; antique furniture and homewears, rare old cameras, boxes packed full of vintage vinyl, paintings that sometimes date back to the mid-19th century, hand-painted antique ceramics, and one of the best collections of classic pocket books in abundance for just a dollar each.
- Stop for cash on the way the to the flea market. None of the vendors take credit cards.
- Get there early before the die-hard op-shoppers have picked through the more valuable goods.
- The first Sunday of every month is their garage sale day, and most of the regular dealers will be across the bridge at the Alameda Point Antiques Faire.
- Most vendors are willing to bargain, but they're a little easier to work with later in the day.
There's free parking and admission at the market, in addition to a number of tasty taco trucks you won't spot anywhere else in the area.