Shop Like a Local at the Bretxa Market in San Sebastian

Many of us decide to come to San Sebastian because of the amazing gastronomy scene, but where do local chefs find their impeccable quality ingredients? The answer would be, of course, from the local fish and food markets. 

Not only do these play an extremely important role as the place to buy fresh ingredients, but they’ve also served as a meeting point for local foodies throughout history. If you’re exploring the Old Town of San Sebastian, the Bretxa Market is a must-see (and must-taste!). Here’s all you need to know about the Bretxa market of San Sebastian. 

A guide to visiting La Bretxa Market in San Sebastian

Grocery shopping for 150 years

The Bretxa Market has a lot of history behind it: Locals have been doing their grocery shopping here for 150 years! The emblematic building was designed by local architect Antonio Cortázar, who is also responsible for designing a big part of the city of San Sebastian, known as the Ensanche

Construction of the market started in 1870, and today you’ll find the original building still standing there. With its arch-shaped windows and stone walls, the building is an impressive sight worth visiting for the architecture alone. 

But we Devourers, of course, are curious to find out what those sturdy stone walls hide behind them. Here’s what to expect on a visit to La Bretxa Market in San Sebastian today.

One of our favorite places to go shopping in San Sebastian is La Bretxa Market!
La Bretxa is most famous for its historic market, but the entire complex is shopper’s paradise!

Michelin-quality ingredients 

It’s a known fact here in San Sebastian that every Michelin chef’s day starts at the best local food market. Take the escalator behind the original market building to the basement floor, and you’ll find a variety of food stands that you could have only dreamed of.

On this floor you will find local delicacies such as fresh fish and seafood, charcuterie, butcher’s shops, local pastries, fresh fruit and vegetables and—since you are in Spain—some delicious olives and olive oil! If that’s not enough, the biggest supermarket of the district is located right next to the market stalls.

READ MORE: Top 5 Gourmet Markets and Shops in San Sebastian

A variety of fresh produce at a market stall in Spain
Pick up some fresh, local products at the market.

The Saturday outdoor market 

If you’re in search of fresh and seasonal Basque produce, head to the market on Saturday morning! That’s when you’ll find small producers and farmers, or baserritarras in Basque, selling their seasonal vegetables, local Idiazabal cheese, beans and fresh flowers right outside the building. 

After shopping, enjoy a cup of coffee at Coffee Break, the cute coffee shop on the market square. This is the Saturday morning routine of many local Basque aitona and amona (grandparents)!

A farmer's market in San Sebastian, Spain
Buy the freshest products straight from the source at this lovely farmers’ market.

Find more at the Bretxa shopping center

These days, the original Bretxa Market building is home to a recently renovated shopping center, so this is a great option if you wish to continue shopping. The shops vary from Spanish fashion to local jewelry designers and perfume stores.

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