One of the joys of a foodie is when they stumble upon a food market during their travels. I am a huge fan of food markets as they are also a showcase for local food.
There are many food markets around the world, most are easy to find and accessible by local transport. Often the prices at a food market are not as expensive as restaurants so it is a great place to try new things.
Here are some of my favourite food markets.
Gurney Drive Hawker Center (Penang, Malaysia)
Address: 172, Solok Gurney 1, George Town, Jelutong, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
If you are looking to try local Penang cuisines, I suggest Gurney Drive Hawker Center. It has many food stalls to choose from and their prices are pretty low but still with great taste. Most people say this place is too touristy but I think it’s a great place. This place opens late afternoon so it won’t be too hot and you can even enjoy some sea breeze. However, the setting is outdoor so when it’s raining it is rather impractical.
If you are a first timer in Penang, this place is a must visit.
Central Market Hall (Budapest, Hungary)
Address: Budapest, Vámház krt. 1-3, 1093 Hungary
This huge market is one of the oldest in Budapest and it is a great place for food hunting. Although this place doesn’t only sell food, the market is quite well known for its culinary delights.
I went there to try the savoury dishes but found it too expensive and disappointing, however I have heard of friends who had a different experience (there are quite a lot of stall and I didn’t try them all). However, I was completely in love with the dessert section downstairs. The cakes are huge, amazingly delicious and wasn’t too pricey. I absolutely recommend this place for those who have a sweet tooth.
Pasar Atom (Surabaya, Indonesia)
Address: Jalan Bunguran No. 45, Bongkaran, Pabean Cantian, Surabaya, Jawa Timur
Pasar is the Indonesian word for market and Pasar Atom is a famous market in Surabaya. Surabaya has a reputation for having amazing food and people often come to the city just for its food.
Pasar Atom has been around since 1972 and it has now expanded into one huge complex. It now has a mall, but they still keep its traditional market. They sell all sorts of things but of course the food is the main star. Although in the mall section there is a food court that I totally recommend as the food is top notch, I also recommend that you visit its traditional counterpart. You will see a lot of traditional market snacks there and it never hurts to try one or two (or a dozen). It’s a great place to have your introduction to Indonesian market snacks.
Chatuchak Weekend Market (Bangkok, Thailand)
Address: 587/10 Kamphaeng Phet 2 Rd, Chatuchak, Bangkok 10900, Thailand
I know that Chatuchak market sells many things, but the food is one of its highlights. When I went here my best friend practically dragged me as I thought it would just be all about shopping but I couldn’t be more wrong as there were many food to try.
I had the privilege of trying sausage wrapped in bacon (!!), lots of fresh mangoes and the star of my trip to this market: coconut ice cream. It was so heavenly and perfect for the hot weather. It was served in a coconut shell and you could choose the toppings for the ice cream, like peanuts and nata de coco.
Mercat de Sant Josep de la Boqueria (Barcelona, Spain)
Address: La Rambla, 91, 08001 Barcelona, Spain
This market is located in the busy street of La Rambla and I always visit this place whenever I’m in Barcelona. Though I am not a huge fan of La Rambla, I would make the effort to go to this market because it is full of so many goodness.
I love watching the stalls who sell many things from chillies to all kinds of meat. I never miss buying a juice or two, you can never resist the juice sellers!
Tiong Bahru Market (Singapore)
Address: 30 Seng Poh Road, Singapore, 168898
If you are ever in Singapore, visiting the Tiong Bahru neighbourhood is a must. Not only does the place offers a mix of old and new, it has also become a place loved for its hip cafes and traditional food stalls.
Visiting Tiong Bahru is a ritual for me, and I always make my way to Tiong Bahru Market to grab my lunch or just for a coffee. There are so many food stalls to choose from at this market, from Thai food to traditional Singaporean culinary, like the well loved chicken rice. If you are confused on what to choose, check out this awesome guide of the stalls (I found this guide by accident and will totally use it on my next visit!).
So, are you a fan of food markets? Which ones have you been to? Let us know!