The most lively part of the city is adjacent to Monastiraki square. Its name means “the small monastery” and it is due to an old monastery, the main church of which is still to be seen in the centre of the square. It had been the heart of the commercial life from ancient times till the early 19th century, when the commercial activity shifted to the streets of the new city with some antique shops still remaining.
To the west of Monastiraki the traditional Flea Market has been held since the early 19th century.
At the north side of the Monastiraki Square begins the Athena str. lined by the Municipal or Central Market. On the left side the open-air and vegetable market is located, on the right one there is the fish and meat market housed in a neoclassical building complex of the 19th century. The shops along Athena str. sell nuts and dried fruit. A walk through this crowded and lively part of the city is highly recommended. And if you get hungry, you can enjoy the local food in some of the traditional tavernas.