Also known as Alaranta, Laukontori is a popular outdoor market square in Tampere. Although it isn't as busy as Tammelantori, it is well worth a visit because of its excellent location in the centre of the city, right by the harbour. In summertime the stalls are rich with fresh vegetables and plants. Locals go there to have some mustamakkara (a kind of sausage Tampere is famous for) or a cup of coffee in one of the small outdoor cafés.
Laukontori is also known for the annual fish market. This is definitely the place to visit on a warm summer's day. Watch the boats leave for Viikinsaari and have an ice cream...
Address: Laukontori Tampere 33100
Opening hours: Mon-Fri 6am-2pm; Sat 6am-1pm
Radiokirppis is an indoor self-service flea market in the centre of Tampere, right by the popular Laukontori marketplace. Here people hire booths and bring in the stuff they don't need anymore, selling it at very reasonable prices. This is a good place to find children's clothes, books, small home accessories or even furniture. You will need some time, though, to examine the different tables and to make real finds. New stuff arrives every morning. No credit cards are accepted here.
Address: Laukontori 12 Tampere 33200
Opening hours: Winter: Mon-Fri 10am-6pm, Sat 10am-3pm, Sun 10am-3pm; summer: Mon-Fri 10am-5pm, Sat 10am-3pm, Sun closed
Telephone: +358 70 008 8888
Tammelantori is the town's most popular marketplace and for many people the one and only place. Outdoor market trading started here as early as the beginning of the twentieth century. In summer, stalls fill the square early in the morning. There are vegetables, plants, handcrafts and clothes. You don't need to go hungry: the outdoor cafés and stalls offer something for everyone. You should taste the various fish dishes or the famous mustamakkara (a kind of sausage Tampere is famous for). You might find something you like in the flea-market part of the square where anyone can come, pay for a table and sell their things.
The square is also a popular stage for street musicians, as there is normally a good audience there. In winter the going slows down, but the regular market sellers will be there and you can still find your potatoes.
Address: Tammelantori Tampere 33500
Opening hours: 1 Jan-31 Dec: Mon-Fri 6am-2.30pm; 1 May-31 Oct: Sat 6am-2pm; 1 Nov-30 Apr: Sat 6am-1pm; Midsummer's Eve and Christmas Eve 6am-12pm
Madelaine sells second-hand designer clothes for women only. You will not find clothes dating back to the 1970s, but newer trendy clothing such as suits, dresses and party wear, all as good as new. Trying on the clothes, you might even forget that you are in a second-hand shop. As the clothes are mainly in good brands, they are a little bit more pricey than in other second-hand shops, but this place still offers an excellent opportunity to save money.
Address: Kauppakatu 15 Tampere 33100
Opening hours: 10am-5pm Mon-Fri; 10am-2pm Sat
Telephone: +358 3 214 0994
2. Kaunotar ja Kulkuri
Kaunotar ja Kulkuri (Lady and the Tramp) sells second-hand clothes for women and men. The clothes are mainly for young people (small sizes), and therefore most of the customers are students. You can find vintage clothing from the 1970s, such as leather jackets and other treasures that are again considered cool. There are also bags, shoes and belts at very low prices. You can offer your old clothes for sale provided that they are in good condition and clean.
Address: Tammelan puistokatu 34 Tampere 33500
Opening hours: 10am-5pm Mon-Fri; 10am-2pm Sat
Telephone: +358 3 223 8110
1. Hietalahden tori
Hietalahdentori square is located in a historically rich area that for centuries was a favourite amongst sailors. Numerous tattoo parlours, old cafés and bars are some of the signs of this past. The square is an important part of the city's history, but also an active part of today's Helsinki. The market held here is the place to buy bargain goods in a historical dockland environment. Besides fruit, vegetables, flowers and fish, Hietalahti market also sports a nice flea market, with everything from clothes to antiques. This famous flea market is held Mon-Fri 8am-2pm, Sat 8am-3pm.
On one side of the square stands the historical Hietalahti Market Hall, designed by Selim A. Lindqvist, which is a great place to go shopping or relax with a cup of tea or coffee. It is a nice alternative to being out on the square, especially during foul winter weather. Even in good weather, though, the traditional and modern products (especially handcrafts) for sale in the market hall are reason enough to visit the building.
Address: Hietalahdentori Helsinki 00180
Opening hours: Mon-Sat 7am-2pm
Neighbourhood: Centre (Ruoholahti)
Nearest train: Ruoholahti (325 m)
1. Hagelstamin Antikvaarinen Kirjakauppa
This antiquarian bookshop is the best place in town if you are searching for Nordic literature, but it is not cheap. The interior is very interesting even for window-shoppers, decorated with skulls. The Hagelstam family also hold antiques auctions. This shop will serve you in Swedish or English as well.
Address: Fredrikinkatu 35 Helsinki 00100
Opening hours: 10am-6pm Mon-Fri, 10am-2pm Sat
Telephone: +358 9 649 291
2. Seppo Hiltunen Ky
Philosophy, theology, history, politics, literature, science and mystery are all among this humanity and theology-based second-hand bookstore specialities. It is a shop meant especially for students, founded in the 1930s; the same family owns it still.
The service is very good and prices are reasonable, but always have cash on you, as they don't take cards. Hiltunen is easy to find between Senate Square and Kauppatori, and if you still need advice on where to find it, ask: everybody in Helsinki knows where Hiltunen is.
Address: Sofiankatu 6 C Helsinki 00170
Opening hours: 11am-6pm Mon-Fri, 9am-2pm Sat
Telephone: +358 9 627 161