Mesa Market Recreational Shopping

January 18, 2015
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Mesa Swap Meet

The Mesa Market Swap Meet is a favourite attraction for visitors to the Greater Phoenix East Valley

There are many things for a visitor to the greater Phoenix area to see and do: museums, art galleries, golf courses, hiking and scenic drives, to name a few. In the East Valley, one of the most visited attractions is none of these things. Mesa Market Swap Meet is a mile and a quarter of shopping lanes under a breezeway. It boasts 900 merchants and 1600 shops.


Mesa Market Swap Meet exterior

The exterior isn’t much to look at and is surrounded by acres of parking lot


aisles at Mesa arket Swap Meet

Under the breezeway are long aisles lined with shops offering a multitude of goods

The type of goods for sale range from the traditional to the bizarre, the practical to the fun, and bargain price cheap to expensive. You can find clothing, nuts and candies, tools, toys, games, household items, flags, home decor, pottery, jewelry, novelty items, souvenirs, cosmetics, memorabilia, and more. 

You can usually spot the first-timers looking both amazed and a little lost at the amount of things to see. Locals and repeat winter visitors visit “The Market” for specific items they know they can find there. Announcements over the loud speakers alert you to bargains as you walk through the aisles.

Mesa Market Swap Meet food court

Food court area, complete with entertainment and ATM machine

Over the years, I’ve bought a variety of items at the market: Mexican vanilla, glass nail files, socks, Dawgs sandals, gift t-shirts, foam sun visors, gardening gloves and a wool shawl. On one of my earliest visits, I purchased a metal sun wall decor item for the outside of my house. It wouldn’t fit on the plane and I left it in my brother-in-law’s garage for several months until I found a way to drive it back to Canada. Paying for shipping would have destroyed the bargain value of my $25 purchase.


Mesa Market Swap Meet merchandise

A small sampling of merchandise on display

Mesa Market Swap Meet is located at 10550 East Baseline Road in Mesa, Arizona. During the winter high season it is open Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays from 7am to 4pm. During spring season, it is open Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays from 7am to 3pm. During summer season, it is open Saturdays and Sundays from 7am to 3pm. Note that there will be fewer vendors present outside of the winter high season.

A few tips if you decide to visit “The Market”:

  • Don’t look for a parking spot immediately upon entry. Instead keep driving down the lane which runs the perimeter of the parking lot until you get to the west side of the building. There will be more spots open and you will be nearer the exit for leaving.
  • The space is not completely enclosed. If you go in January, wait until late morning or early afternoon so it will not be so cold. On warmer days, go early.
  • Wear good walking shoes. The floors are concrete and you will cover a lot of ground.


Mesa Market Swap Meet display
Have you visited the Mesa Market Swap Meet? Do you have a favourite purchase?

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  • Reply
    January 18, 2015 at 1:01 pm

    We had something similar to this in Florida….folks came from everywhere…great fun and some real bargains. The best piece of luggage I own came for “the Market”. Laugh!

    • Reply
      Donna Janke
      January 19, 2015 at 9:13 am

      You never know what bargains you might find at a place like this. I bought a cheap piece of luggage at Mesa Market – it did the trick for what I wanted, but it didn’t last. I didn’t find as good a deal as you.

  • Reply
    Susan cooper
    January 18, 2015 at 10:57 pm

    Hi Donna, this sounds a lot like the Orange County Swap meet at the oc Fair grounds in Costa Mesa, CA. Always lots of fun, bargains, beautiful things, you just never know what you’ll find. I bet the AZ one gets super hot in the summer though.

    • Reply
      Donna Janke
      January 19, 2015 at 9:15 am

      I’ve not been in summer, but I imagine it gets hot. I know it is less interesting in summer because there are many empty stalls. A lot of vendors set up mostly for the winter visitor season.

  • Reply
    January 21, 2015 at 2:17 pm

    What a fun looking place! I think places like this are what I miss most about the mainland. The closest thing we have is a weekly swap meet that’s held on the grounds of the local college but unless you’re into carve monkey pod or tie died fabric (yes, there are still people doing that!) it’s not exactly a shopper’s paradise. I’m looking forward to some serious shopping when I head to the mainland this fall! Thanks for the inspiration Donna!

    • Reply
      Donna Janke
      January 22, 2015 at 6:23 pm

      Today I had lunch with a cousin who is visiting the area from Minnesota, She had a list of items she was pretty sure she could get at the Swap Meet. She went yesterday and found everything on her list.

  • Reply
    January 21, 2015 at 9:44 pm

    Definitely looks like a lot of fun. I always try to go to places like the Mesa Market when I’m visiting a new city. I barely had anytime when I was in Istanbul to wander around the Grand Bazaar, but around every corner was something new to see and it’s a great way to get the flavor of a particular locale as well.

    • Reply
      Donna Janke
      January 22, 2015 at 6:24 pm

      I imagine the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul would be lots of fun.

  • Reply
    Doreen Pendgracs
    January 23, 2015 at 10:52 am

    I love recreational shopping! Shopping for needs is never really fun as it HAS to be done. But when you can sle time to explore and peruse in a relaxed state, shopping is pure bliss. The Mesa market looks great!

    • Reply
      Donna Janke
      January 26, 2015 at 3:37 pm

      The Mesa Market is an experience. You need to go when you have time and are relaxed to truly enjoy it.

  • Reply
    January 24, 2015 at 10:58 pm

    Thanks so much Donna. I have never visited the Mesa Market Swap Meet, but it does get me thinking that maybe the Art Partners could sell a few of their bits and pieces at such a market. Thanks for the inspiration.

    • Reply
      Donna Janke
      January 26, 2015 at 3:38 pm

      It would be interesting to see Art Partners’ bits and pieces at this market. I’m sure they would be popular.

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