Shopping in Madrid For those looking for cheap and cheerful souvenirs there are many options in either Europes largest Sunday market or one of the many tourist stores in the city centre. Fashion As the cultural capital of Spain, Madrid is also the point of emergence for some of the hottest trends in the world of fashion. A unique mix of shopping celebrities, locals and tourists sweeps through the boulevards popping into exclusive boutiques, second-hand designer shops and vintage clothing markets. Though some of the central establishments may seem expensive at first glance, true gems await patient browsers. Be sure to visit: Puerta del Sol, Calle de Preciados, and Gran Vía comprise the most popular area among tourists, as they feature a wide range of popular fashion chains. The world-famous Spanish brands of Zara, Bershka, Stradivarius and Pull&Bear can all be found here, offering their collections for prices much lower than anywhere else in the world. Salamanca, located northeast of the centre, is a Mecca for the wealthiest shoppers. Calle Serrano and Calle Ortega y Gasset are home to the fancy establishments of internationally known designers like Versace, Chanel and Hugo Boss, along with the renowned Spanish fashion houses of Adolfo Domínguez and Purificación García. Chueca, the gay district of Madrid, is known as a popular shopping destination among fans of hippie fashion. Calle Hortaleza and Calle Fuencarral hold a number of intriguing second-hand and vintage boutiques, as well as youthful fashion outlets and unique accessories shops. An interesting hippie market takes place at Plaza Felipe II. Books Madrid boasts several bookshops that always prove to be a hit with local and visiting bookworms. Locally printed books often turn out to be quite expensive because of high printing costs, but interesting second-hand shops abound in the city. Calle Isaac Peral and Calle Fernando el Católico, close to the university campus, are home to a large number of new and second-hand books in many languages. Cuesta de Moyano is a book market which opens daily beside the Botanical Gardens. It's a sort of literary El Rastro, selling mostly second-hand books in Spanish. Feria del Libro Antiguo y de Ocasión, devoted to old and rare books, starts at the beginning of May in Paseo de Recoletos. Art & Antiques Though substantially modernised in recent years, Madrid retains its essentially retro feel. Art enthusiasts and crafts collectors will be delighted with the abundance of traditional art dealers' studios and outdoor markets selling all kinds of curious junk. Carrera de San Jerónimo is the area of the densest concentration of art studios, crafts shops and home decor outlets. Explore the establishments along Plaza de las Cortés, Calle del Prado and Calle de las Huertas, but don't expect big bargains, as the neighbourhood is quite upscale. El Rastro, held every Sunday between Calle de los Embajadores and Ronda de Toledo, is Madrid's most famous flea market. Vendors display all kinds of unexpected treasures, and bargaining is more than welcomed. Many claim that the conversion of the market into a major tourist attraction has taken away much of El Rastro's original spirit, but it still remains a unique experience. Rastrillo de Tetuán, a small-scale version of El Rastro, is held in Calle Marqués de Viana. Plaza Mayor hosts a stamp, print and coin market on Sunday mornings. A Fan This traditional Spanish accessory, available widely at every souvenir shop, can be seen as just a tourist item. However, they do come in handy on hot summer days, and are really used by locals.turkeyarena.com Real Madrid T-Shirt There's no better way of keeping the conversation going in Madrid than praising the performance of the Real Madrid football team. You might want to refrain from flaunting your outfit in Barcelona, however. A Flamenco CD Though the music was born in the hot south of Andalusia, Madrid is an important centre for contemporary flamenco culture, with many great local bands with their own unique sound.