Central Market (Mercado Central), San Jose

3.8
#1 of 10 in Shopping in San Jose
Filling up an entire city block, Central Market (Mercado Central) has become the largest market in the city--it sees tens of thousands of visitors every day. The circular shape of the market contains more than 200 shops and stalls of butchers, fish merchants, farmers, and more. After over 130 years, the market still offers locally grown and locally made products such as coffee and snakeskin goods. Tourists and locals both use the market; merchants do not pressure customers to buy as much as in similar markets. Put Central Market (Mercado Central) at the forefront of your travel plans using our San Jose vacation planner.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
423 reviews
Google
4.2
TripAdvisor
  • August 15, 2017
    It is to find some articles or a ride with strangers, but the layout of the market has always been very tangled. It's like spinning in circles and you always have to ask how to get to local X. At Easter by the way, the fishmongers were selling Marlin at an exorbitant price.
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  • August 14, 2017
    It's a few blocks up from the main cultural plaza and worth a quick visit of you are in the vicinity, otherwise don't go out of your way to get there. The small stalls generally are stuffed with cheap...  more »
  • August 14, 2017
    If you can enjoy chaos, but also the people want experience in their own environment, a must. There is a lot of police on the leg which gives a safe feeling.
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Google
  • March 18, 2017
    Can't miss this place if you're in San Jose. Very historic. Crazy variety of things to see, eat and buy. Don't miss the ice cream shop that's been there over 100 years. Amazing lunch options. And you can even buy spices or live animals!
  • May 13, 2017
    This is a super cool market! Though many go to buy souvenirs, the best thing to do is grab a really cheap meal. So many small spots to check out!
  • March 6, 2017
    El Mercado Central is a busy, active place. If you're looking for an amazing deal on souvenirs this might not be your place, but for an experience this is excellent. Be sure to keep your valuables close (or better yet, completely out of sight), and be aware of your surroundings. The ability to speak Spanish is not critical, but it is very helpful.
  • May 16, 2017
    IF you're looking for"IT"... You will find "IT" in this fascinating maze of everything!!! You will be lost in wonderment while being swept up in the Tico lifestyle!!! #PuraVida
  • June 4, 2017
    I go to markets like these for the food. An amazing variety from all over Costa Rica. Ok place for souvenirs.

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