Tips From The Nest: Make The Most Of Markets
The local markets are the perfect place to pick up anything you might need while on the road during your tour of Europe. I often make an early morning pilgrimage to the local market for any supplies I need while on tour. You also have the opportunity to pick up some fantastic fare for the day – everything from snacks to beer and wine.
A Popular Choice
I first noticed how important markets are to Europeans when I was touring through Paris. Many of the locals chose not to dine in the cafés or restaurants during the day. Instead, they would pick up something from the market and enjoy a picnic on the banks of the Seine. We followed suit, picking up baguettes, fromage (cheese), wine and salmon from the local market for about €20. We settled down opposite Notre Dame while the sun set for our first European picnic. This was a truly magical experience that I will never forget.
Just A Few Fantastic European Markets
Mercado de la Lonja del Barranco is Seville’s premier gourmet market, located on the banks of the Canal de Alfonso XIII and a short distance from Seville’s stunning Baroque bullring. There are 20 permanent stalls serving the very best in local meat, seafood, cheese, vegetables, baked goods, wine and beer. The market is spread over two floors in a light, breezy building that was expertly designed by Eiffel. You can enjoy the Mercado de la Lonja del Barranco during your free time in Seville on our Magnifico Spain and Portugal tour.
Every Thursday and Saturday, Frankfurt’s large central square transforms from an open pedestrian zone to a bustling farmers’ market. With over fifty stalls and kiosks, Erzeugermarkt is the largest and most popular produce market in the city. The stall holders pride themselves on selling only the best local produce and Hessen specialties from nearby farms. Two treats that can’t be missed are the Kartoffelpuffer (fried potato pancakes coated in applesauce) and Apfelwein (a tart, slightly sour alcoholic beverage made from apples). You can explore the Erzeugermarkt prior to enjoying our Black Forest, Bavaria and the Tyrol tour.
Just a five minute walk from Bordeaux’s stately Victory Square, Marché des Capucins is a bustling indoor and outdoor market that specialises in seafood, cheese, charcuterie, and fresh fruit and vegetables. This market is a hugely popular with the locals, so expect your time here to be a little loud and lively. Of the 81 stalls, the oyster bar is arguably the most popular. Don’t be put off by the queue – the quality of these oysters is unsurpassed in all of France! Spend the morning at Marché des Capucins during your free time on our La Francaise tour.
The Testaccio Market is a bustling but friendly outdoor market in Rome’s central Municipio I. There are over 100 vendors offering a range of local specialties, with everything you could need to make your own pizza, cannelloni, ravioli or gnocchi. If you’re not interested in cooking, just pick up something ready-made from one of the many takeaway vendors. For a truly authentic local meal, enjoy a hot tripe sandwich (much tastier than it sounds!) or bollito, the local boiled meat dish. You can wander the Testaccio Market while in Rome prior to our Italy, the Deep South and Sicily tour.
Talk to your tour guide if you’re interested in checking out the local markets. Wherever you are in Europe, your guide will be able to point you in the right direction for amazing produce, sumptuous treats and unique gifts.