Vibrant, colourful and indulgent are just some of the words that spring to mind when I think about these exquisite markets. Located just off Las Ramblas, it is Barcelona’s most central produce market. Each stall is jam packed full of fresh produce with a variety of foods including fruit and vegatables, seafood, meats, cheese, eggs, sweets and spices. Each time I visit, I love going in the morning and getting a fresh juice or cup of fruit to start my day, for just 1.00 – 2.00 euros. Visiting for the first time, part of the magic comes from the way the markets stalls are presented, and the vivid colours that immediately jump out at you. You’re also hit with all the incredible smells coming from the open air kitchens, it is a complete sensory overload.
Having visited both in Summer and Winter, the tropical fruits are all year round which is such a treat, especially if you’re returning to an Australian winter with no mango! Spread amongst the bustle of the markets are some lovely cafes where you can sit up at the bar, have a coffee and order some fresh seafood to be cooked up for you right on the spot. If it’s too early for seafood, there are plenty of other delicious options including lots of pintxos (no direct translation but they’re essentially small bar bites), and of course pastries and churros for those who are after more of a sweet start to their day.
Many of Barcelona’s top restaurants will do their shopping here, which is saying something about the high quality and freshness of the produce – and at a variety of prices. You can have a cheap feed if you want to, or indulge and spend a little more. Whichever you decide, you won’t be disappointed. It’s important to note that during peak-season the markets will be packed with tourists aplenty, so get down early to score a seat at one of the bars. It’s good to note that there are a selection of restaurants around the perimeter, however these are slightly less traditional and will have higher prices for their meals.
It is important to be wary of pickpockets. Although it has never happened to me, I have witnessed it many times. They are very fast and take advantage of the crowds of people walking shoulder to shoulder. Be cautious when sitting down at tables about having your belongings out on top of the table or on the seat next to you. Aside from that, let your senses take hold and feast your eyes and stomach! It is one of the best markets in the world and is a must see when visiting Barcelona.
Address: La Rambla, 91, 08001 Barcelona, Spain