Sunday, March 22, 2009

Sunday morning antique market in Tongeren, Belgium (Feb 8)

We found the Walnut, Iowa of Belgium, but only better! It's in a small town called Tongeren which holds an antique market every Sunday morning, basically from 6 AM - noon (it is an hour’s drive from Brussels, between Leuven and Li├Ęge). My husband and I really enjoy antiques, not that we can afford everything we want though! Sometimes it's hard going to these kind of places when you don't have ample room in your apartment or a garage to hold all of the stuff that you want to buy. Back in Lincoln, Nebraska we had plenty of room to hold all of our antique binges we had gone on over the last few years. In particular, we liked going to Walnut, Iowa in June when they had their annual Antique Fair, besides all their regular shops. Fortunately, Shannon's folks are storing everything for us in a storage container on their farmstead while we're here in Belgium only acquiring more stuff!

Here is some more background on the antique market and the town itself: The Sunday antique market basically follows the streets around the old town wall along with filling squares and two huge halls with dealers’ booths. One can find all kinds of items and in all types of conditions from unused to nearly falling apart in the abundance of stalls. Overall, the quality seemed very good and the selection truly enormous. Prices were also very reasonable especially when compared to some of the outrageous antique shops in Brussels, which are fun to look through, but not fun on the pocketbook! Tongeren is a place where antique lovers migrate from all corners of Belgium, even from neighbouring countries. The town is made up of narrow streets, a central square and lots of shops, bars and restaurants. Due to the weekly market, no doubt, there is also plenty of antique shops. These cater for antique hungry visitors even on other days than Sunday. Just another interesting fact, Tongeren is Belgium’s oldest town. The town was established on the site where Julius Caesar had his military camp during the conquest of Gallia.
One of the many sidewalks lined with antique vendors
Nearing the end of the market as we were heading to our car, but coming back for more!
Just some random things for sale
Main cathedral in center of town
Cute antique store
Part of the old town wall
Next time we plan to go to this restaurant since it looked so cute and was set back from the touristy market area.
Another church, actually next to the restaurant above
Our newly acquired purchases: oak night stand/end table, German coffee grinder, Tripel Karmeliet Belgium beer glasses, wooden spiral candle holders and an old watering can


Kathy said...

Love the purchases!!! If you find anymore of those coffee grinders like that get me one and I will pay you back. Not sure what I would do with it... but I really like it. The stand as well but it might be harder to pack with@! ;p

megan haynes said...

I love that you found an antique market! Fun!

sweet european dreams said...

hi! I'm hoping you're still enjoying your time in Belgium. I wanted to let you know that I linked this particular blog to my blog, regarding European antique markets. Just wanted to let you know! thanks for the great write-up! -diane