Located a bit far from the hotel zone in Cancun, Mercado 28 is perhaps the most famous flea market in Mexico. I’m not kidding, everyone who’s been to Mexico knows about it. Calling it a flea market is a bit unfair, really, as it’s more of a huge fair of sourvenir booths. But that’s the English language for you.
It’s It’s very short bus ride (about 10-15 minutes) from the hotel zone, using bus #R2. Another great thing anout the Cancun buses- they cost about 50 cents and are constantly running. We’ve used them multiple times a day and I honestly don’t think we’ve ever waited for longer than a minute. It actually makes sense, as the buses are the main means of transportation for the locals to get to and from work.
Getting to the market itself is a bit tricky. It’s hard to see it from the outside and tumor has it, the bus drivers are paid by the other,more expensive strip mall to give wrong directions to tourists. We got the wrong directions 4 times before we asked a police officer for directions.
Once you get to the market, it’s quite overwhelming at first. We were expecting larger crowds but since we got the early, around 10am, it still wasn’t too busy. Right away, you see all the stalls full of souvenirs. The seller’s were pretty aggressive about inviting us over to see their merchandise. There were tons of cool things to chose from-traditional Mexican talavera, liquor, and apparel. One thing to know, the prices you’ll be quoted will be super high. The point is to haggle as much as you can and the vendors will come down with their pricesto about a half. Treat it as a sport, really. In the end, I bought 2 serape blankets, tequila and some talavera serving dishes. I bought them at good prices, however, I’d recommend looking for what you want and then going to the supermarket store in the hotel zone, Plaza La Fiesta, and buying what want there for much cheaper.
The market was also full of trip brokers, trying to sell day trips. Those are actually a much better deal than buying trips through your hotel or online. For example, one of the most popular trips is the one to Chichen Itza. Usually hotels sell it for about $90-120 per person. We managed to find tickets for $55 with a broker at the market.
There’s also plenty of great restaurants at the market, many of them more authentic than the hotel food. A lot of the restaurants will also offer free margaritas to lure in customers. Honestly, it was the best meal I had while in Mexico. Visit this place!