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Central Market (Mercado Central)

Bordered by Avdas. Central and 1 and Cs. 6 and 8 | Barrio La Merced, San Jose, Costa Rica
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This collection of stalls and restaurants contains the country's first ice cream vendor.
  • Excellent31%
  • Very good45%
  • Average18%
  • Poor3%
  • Terrible3%
Travellers talk about
“pet store” (8 reviews)
“flea market” (11 reviews)
“locals shop” (6 reviews)
Bordered by Avdas. Central and 1 and Cs. 6 and 8 | Barrio La Merced, San Jose, Costa Rica
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Reviews (432)
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1 - 10 of 288 reviews

Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

Guess it's a good place for locals to get grocery but the market itself is a bit dark and messy. The souvenir shops are not as good as those in other places of interest. Take care of your belongings.

Thank Rachel Z
Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

Buy Peaberry and Tarazzu coffee at Cafe Central, they have very good descriptions of the origin of their coffee in English!

1  Thank Virmz
Reviewed 3 weeks ago

Great market area. It's more expensive than the artisanal marcado for souvenirs but not prohibitively so. Nice little shops and eateries. Not a must-do location, but if you want to have a very local experience, this would be it. It's a bit of a maze,...More

Thank Sarah H
Reviewed 4 weeks ago

As advertised - a busy bazaar of all sorts of stuff. Unlike many Caribbean destinations, the shop keepers are not pushy at all. Same can't be said for the many eateries, but they are just trying to get a menu in your hand. It's quite...More

Thank BMoreE
Reviewed 5 weeks ago via mobile

Perfect for every need and the food is great, cheap everything and prices are negotiated on the spot.

2  Thank Agust O
Reviewed 5 weeks ago

We went on a Sunday and nearly all of the stalls were closed. Recommend going on a weekday if possible.

1  Thank Phyllis Q
Reviewed 14 August 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 tacky trinkets but the saving grace...More

Thank Bruce M
Reviewed 11 August 2017 via mobile

We visited as part of a guided tour and went back again after to look around and have lunch. Packed full of quirky stalls and interesting items from herbal remedies to the oldest ice cream shop in SJ. There was even a brass band playing...More

1  Thank Robyn W
Reviewed 6 August 2017 via mobile

The Central Market is a flea market whuch is free if you just walk around and look. An easy way to learn about a culture is to see what food and items are sold. I bought a granizoda while there. It is a snow cone...More

1  Thank pmall0zzi
Reviewed 3 August 2017 via mobile

A central market in downtown San Jose. Lots of restaurants and shops. Nice place to go walking while downtown. Walk during the day.

1  Thank abc12345678993
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Questions & Answers
8 March 2017|
AnswerShow all 2 answers
Response from chilis_cr | Reviewed this property |
Hi. Just called the main office. Sunday is closed. Officially Rest of the days is open from 6:30am to 6pm
Google Translation
26 January 2016|
AnswerShow all 4 answers
Response from Kerri P | Reviewed this property |
Because this is a very popular spot it is easier to take a bus or cab rather than find a spot to park. Make sure to take your time and be prepared to haggle with the dealers to get a better price. Pura Vida!
24 July 2015|
Response from SarongGoddess | Reviewed this property |
According to what I believe is their "official" facebook page - Mercado Central de San José, Costa Rica It says - Monday - Friday - 6:30am-5:45pm. Saturday - 6:30am-6pm LOCATION: San Jose - Avenidas Central & 1 between... More