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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 good46%
  • Average17%
  • Poor3%
  • Terrible3%
Travellers talk about
“pet store” (7 reviews)
“great market” (8 reviews)
Bordered by Avdas. Central and 1 and Cs. 6 and 8 | Barrio La Merced, San Jose, Costa Rica
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Reviews (415)
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1 - 10 of 277 reviews

Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

In the pouring rain, the Mercado Central is a nice place to wait it out! Lots to see, pretty much anything you might want in the way of trinkets or clothes is available somewhere! But warning, it's an intriguing maze! Perhaps a trail of bread...More

Thank Alf H
Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

The market was a cool place , I felt very safe walking around with my 7 year old. Everyone was friendly and courteous. They didn't pressure me to buy anything , gave me space and helpful when I was ready to purchase items. The place...More

Thank Sara L
Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

This place is very unique, yes it's very different from the normal markets in the states, and some areas might smell as well but that's what makes it unique, it's part of their culture and this is a normal shopping area for locals. The food...More

Thank Claudia G
Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

Went to central market with an open mind after reading bad reviews. I really should have listened. I walked in to the smell of urine near one of the food stalls. It seemed really unsanitary so skipped eating there and went to Carl's Jr. Nearby...More

Thank Oscar R
Reviewed 14 June 2017 via mobile

This place is amazing. It is huge and contains many stores and sodas (traditional restaurants). Many of the sodas are open by 8am but the other shops don't open until 9am. The prices are reasonable but you will get a better deal if you pay...More

Thank IllianaV
Reviewed 10 June 2017 via mobile

I walked through the market within minutes as the things inside werent that interesting to us tourists. Its pretty small. What caught my ear was the pet store outside but i didnt want to look inside.

Thank Aly E
Reviewed 8 June 2017

Visiting the Mercado Central (Central Market) is a wonderful time that shows off both a picture of Costa Rican culture but also the best of opportunities for tourists. I particularly like the coffee shop and café Café Central on the north west side of the...More

Thank Aaron C
Reviewed 29 May 2017 via mobile

One of my favourite things to do in San Jose was browse in the central market. It is loud, busy and chaotic but there was remarkably little hassle and we felt very safe and relaxed but at the same time, obviously keep your wits about...More

Thank Bozeman-Dublin
Reviewed 24 May 2017 via mobile

Barter, haggle, smell, touch, smile, and enjoy yourself like a local in the central frutería or calle mercado in Escazú. Open during the sunny part of the weekends until the rain begins, sample true locally sourced, organic food and goods and support local economies without...More

Thank Elle T
Reviewed 13 May 2017

A good place to get many things-esp fresh seafood if you are cooking for yourself( only place to buy fresh octopus). Caution very narrow paths- a lot of contact-- beware of pickpockets. Many small sodas( eating kiosks). A very good place to buy spices- but...More

2  Thank Robert A L
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Questions & Answers
9 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
27 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