David Bennett of Quillcards tells us the story of the Changing Times In The Largest Indoor Market In Europe as he describes the Kirkgate Market in the center of Leeds in Yorkshire in the north of England.
“As long as I have known Kirkgate market it has been the province of ‘working class’ Leeds. Some people in Leeds never shop there, preferring to shop in more upmarket places. So to see Jamie Oliver’s Ministry of Food in Kirkgate market helps to bring about a paradigm shift in the way markets are seen.”
Jennifer Hattam of The Turkish Life recollects her experience at an Uzbek bazaar - the Chorsu bazaar area at Tashkent in Uzbekistan which she had noted down as a journal entry during her travel there in November 2004.
“We dipped our fingers to taste honey dripping from a knife and spices sold out of canvas sacks as nearby vendors sat and churned huge vats of a marshmallow-like substance and offered tastes to passers-by.”
Brandon of Freewheelings writes about the Mysticism in an Indian Bazaar sharing an enlightening experience as he sat at a chai (tea) stall bench in the middle of a New Delhi bazaar in North India.
“All the noise of the contemporary bazaar for that moment stopped, all the movement. It was just me and that bench amidst a sea of uninterpreted perception, a procession of thought imagery. I had, for that moment, no question to pose to the universe and no quarrel. For that split second I had tapped into what I believe to be the collective unconscious."
A Leap Into The Dark Aubrey Groves writes about the Camden Market in North London set on and around the canal.
“It is full of trendy stalls with some of the wackier designer clothes, music, hippyesque handicrafts from around the World, antiques, and an excellent array of cheap food stalls reflecting London´s multiculturalism.”
a Wandering Mind writes about the historical Hampi Bazaar in South India
“From gold and diamonds to horses and cows, the markets boasted of a variety which impressed even visitors from foreign shores! These marketplaces weren’t like our roadside shops, but well planned and well laid out areas, paved with stones, with residences for the merchants as well stables for their mounts!”
La tortuga Viajera writes about Madrid’s markets – about El Rastro, a popular market in Madrid’s oldest neighbourhoods as well as about the Mercados which she says are a hybrid between grocery stores and farmers markets.
“Spanish fans, stinky cheeses, fanny packs, fresh fruit, wine by the glass and of course antiques. Madrid’s markets have something for everyone – and a market for everyone.”
Julie from a Lady in London explores more than one market at Lady goes to Market She takes us to the Boroughs market, the Exmouth market, the Leadenhall market as well as to the Camden market.
“There are at least four vendors selling ten different kinds of fresh olives, multiple bread bakers, a handful of specialized cheese shops, two wine stores, a smoothie bar, and a Scottish meat counter. Free samples are given generously, and one could eat an entire meal on bits and pieces alone.”
Louise Heal writes of the La Boqueria – Barcelona’s premier food market
“La Boqueria also does a great line in bars and restaurants. It's not a place for a full meal, rather for a tapas selection of whatever-takes-your-fancy or whatever the chef is doing today. The chalk blackboard menus are testimony to the changing selection.”
Hole in the Donut Cultural Travel describes for us her walk along the Mekong river in Chiang Khong, Thailand.
“In the center of town, vendors sprung up along either side of the street in an unbroken line that stretched as far as I could see. Not the normal trinket sellers, these vendors specialized in food. Plump, fresh fruits. Glistening piles of hot peppers in red, green, and orange. Gelatinous sweets coated in shredded coconut. Piles of wide, flat noodles – phat sie eww – coated in black bean sauce and piled with fresh veggies. An astounding display of culinary delights that stretched for a mouth-watering mile.”
“The characters are real-life, seasoned market-hawkers - mostly very friendly, some gruff, always authentic and fair (this is not one of those markets where you haggle).”
At any time, there is as much to discover in our own world as in another part of the world. And yet, we yearn to travel and to explore territories we know little about outside of where we live. What then? You come back to where you started and find that more than anything else, you’ve discovered a way of looking that you did not know before!
Hoping that readers will share their own experiences of the marketplace, their discoveries and their insights!
Thanks to all those who’ve contributed to this Blog Carnival! The posts included here are from participants in the Lonely Planet Blogsherpa programme that includes the Best Travel Bloggers from around the world selected by Lonely Planet. Do check out the previous Blog Carnival hosted by Nina Fuentes on the theme Has traveling changed you. The next Blog carnival will be announced here soon!
Fish market at Sasoon Docks
Flower market in Mumbai