Shopping in Alicante
Alicante's shopping scene has improved in recent years and offers everything from excellent shopping centres and malls to markets.
The heart of the shopping district is in and around Avenida de Maisonnave. Here you can find a vast array of shoe shops, boutiques and specialist shops. Other more traditional centres are the Avenida Alfonso el Sabio, as well as La Rambla, Calle del Teatro and Calle Gerona. You can find a good selection of turrón (nut nougat), the local delicacy, at Turrones Teclo, Calle Rafael Altamira 13. El Barrio, the old quarter, also teems with shoppers.
The Central Market on Avenida Alfonso el Sabio is not to be missed. It is open Monday to Friday 0730-2030, and Saturday 0730-1500. For the freshest fish get there early, but it also sells fruit, vegetables, cheese and meats. The biggest street markets in Alicante are Campoamor, Carolinas, Benalúa and Babel. On Sunday mornings, stamp collectors and antique enthusiasts congregate in the flea market held in the Town Hall square. The Esplanade is the ideal place to purchase arts and crafts, leatherwork and costume jewellery from street stalls, which spring up during the summer only.
Spanish department store El Corte Inglés has two malls in the city - one offering fashion and the other household appliances and food. They are located on Avenida Federico Soto and Avenida de Maisonnave. Alternatively, check out Centro Comercial Plaza Mar 2, Avenida de Denia; Centrol Comercial Panoramis, Muelle Poniente 6, near the harbour; Centrol Comercial Gran Via, Calle de José García Selles; and Bulevar Plaza, Avenida de la Estación.
Most shops in Alicante open at 0930/1000, closing between 1330/1400 for lunch and reopening from 1700 to 2000 on weekdays. On Saturdays they generally only open for half a day and on Sundays remain closed. However, several larger stores stay open all day, including Saturdays.
Pick up high-street fashion labels, traditional handicrafts, leatherware such as handbags and shoes, and inexpensive jewellery.