The Bustling Dappermarkt of Amsterdam

As markets go, Amsterdam’s robust Dappermarkt is a place of joy. A vibrant, noisy, busy place where about 250 stalls clutter Dapperstraat as traders from many nations ply their trade selling an innumerable number of products ranging from the mundane to the exotic.

Located in the Dapperbuurt area just east of central Amsterdam, the market works because of the village atmosphere and its multicultural makeup.

The Dapperstraat (Dapper Street) is notionally a nice, tree lined avenue but for six days of the week, from Monday through to Saturday the traders move in, erect their stalls, and business booms from 9am until 5pm.

Amsterdam has a number of open air markets, including book markets, art markets, organic produce markets and, of course, a flower market (The Netherlands is one of the world’s largest exporters of cut flowers), but the Dappermarkt is considered to be the best of them all.

The diversity of the market is represented in the nationality of many of the stall holders, who generally hail from places like Suriname, Africa, Asia and Eastern Europe, and the product range is as mixed as the people selling them.

The Dappermarkt has a reputation for being cheap, in that the goods are sold for a reasonable price. Even if you wander through the market with no intention of purchasing, you can still enter a local cafe for a coffee and a touch of market ambience.

Whilst the markets normally operate from Monday to Saturday on special occasions they will also open on Sundays, although the start time is delayed until 10am.

You can purchase just about anything you want there, from clothing to food, much of it exotic. In fact, and incredible range of merchandise is on sale from the practical to the highly impractical. The wafting aromas of spices and food blending with the sweet smell of freshly cut flowers; the babble of haggling being undertaken in a variety of accents and languages; the colour and the activity all combine to create a busy, exciting environment.

It is an easy place to reach, being just a short walk from Amsterdam’s Tropenmuseum; within easy reach of several bus and tram lines, and close to Muiderstation. In Summer, it can even be accessed by boat.

Amsterdam is quite a lively, though well-ordered city, where tolerance seems to almost universally practiced. The multicultural nature of the Dappermarkt, together with the sheer range of goods available for sale, helps to make it one place you should try to reach next time you visit Amsterdam.

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