I love the vibrant colors of fresh produce, the aroma of herbs and spices that awakes all my senses, the smell of local food filling the air, the sound of locals chatting and the dazzling colorful fabrics. I love visiting markets wherever I go, even the wet markets!
Markets tell you a lot about local life and culture. I can easily snap dozens of pictures in one market.
Bac Ha Sunday Market (Sapa, Vietnam)
Just the burst of colors is a feast for your eyes. You can find many food stalls serving local dishes (including horse stew), Hmong Flower girls selling their handicrafts, men selling cows, buffalos, rabbits and dogs. Locals travel from many miles away to come here to barter and trade. Grab an aromatic boiling pho and watch the locals go about their daily life.
La Boqueria Market (Barcelona, Spain)
This market is a must when you are in Barcelona.
I love looking at the fruits and vegetables and like how they are neatly stacked in a pile. How can you not take pictures? Don’t forget to try their delicious fruit juices.
I love Spanish tapas and the ones in this market are pretty good. Great place to grab lunch.
Luang Prabang Markets (Laos)
I love taking walks to the markets in the morning to pick up fruits or to grab a hot noodle soup. The night markets in Luang Prabang are also worth checking out.
Sometimes you run into your new friends at the market. I kept running into this European family of four – a mother taking three young children around the world for a year. They had beautiful locks so I was surprised to see all their heads were shaved. Why? They ran out of shampoo and besides it was too hot. 🙂 Even the girls seemed to love their new look.
Souks (Marrakech, Morroco)
My friend and I must have spent two hours sipping mint tea in one of the many cafés around the square to watch all the action at Jemaa el Fna. We were amazed at how fast the vendors set up their business for the night.
There is a lot to see in this medina -plenty of interesting local food to choose from, delicious orange juice for only 4dirham (40cents), trinkets for sale, snakecharmers, storytellers and henna artists.
It is fun getting lost in the many Souks in Marrakech. Even the smell of animal hide no longer bothered us after a while. We didn’t realize that we got so used to the smell until we brought back leather boots that stink like animal manure! Why we didn’t notice when we were there?! Needless to say, they went in the trash, after my two attempts to get rid of the smell. All the bargaining for nothing.
More pictures of markets around the world
One of the greatest joy of traveling is to experience local markets. Do you have a favorite market somewhere in the world?