Market Guide

By Karen Shimizu

Published on May 26, 2010

Mercado Central

This frenetic fish market in Santiago offers an extraordinary range of sea creatures, many unknown outside Chile, like barnacles and giant squid. Grab some ultrafresh seafood to take home, or eat at one of the market's restaurants that serve such dishes as paila marina (a bouillabaisse-like stew). (Ismael Valdes Vergara 900, Santiago, Chile)

English Market

Housed in a vaulted 18th-century Georgian building, Ireland's biggest and oldest food market is where you'll find everything from fish and produce to baked goods and prime cuts of freshly slaughtered meat. The main attraction is traditional Irish food: tripe boiled in milk, smoked eel, black pudding, soda bread, hot buttered eggs, crubeens (pigs' feet), drisheen (a locally made blood sausage), and plenty of farmhouse cheeses. (Grand Parade, Cork, Ireland)

Khan el-Khalili

Built more than 600 years ago, Khan el-Khalili is still Cairo's main bazaar. Within the market, the spice souk is where merchants do a rapid trade in green henna, cumin, saffron, and more. (al-Azhar Street, Cairo, Egypt)

Shuk HaCarmel

At Tel Aviv's largest, busiest, and most popular market, vendors sing to advertise their wares. Alleys hidden behind the market's main walkway contain some of the best offerings: salted herring, pickled radish, halvah and other sweets. In the nearby Yemenite Quarter, traditional Yemeni dishes like calf's foot soup and roasted lungs simmer in giant pots. (Allenby Street, Tel Aviv, Israel)

Yekshenba Bazaar

This centuries-old bazaar, also known as Kashgar Sunday Market, was the last outfitting post on the old Silk Road, a key point on the trade route connecting Beijing with Rome. Every Sunday, Uighurs, Tajiks, Kyrgyz, Uzbeks, Han Chinese, and Russians all descend on the market for a brisk trade in carpets, kitchen appliances, livestock, sky-high piles of bread, and the riot of produce grown in the surrounding desert, which, thanks to a 2,000-year-old irrigation system that funnels glacial melt from the mountains, yields grapes and raisins, figs, and almonds in abundance. (Kashgar Town Square, Kashgar, China)

Summer Night Market

From May to October, nine acres along the Fraser River host an enormous Asian night market. The 400 booths sell clothes and knickknacks, but the main draw is the food: barbecued smelts, skewered chicken livers, cuttlefish, deep-fried stinky tofu, hand-pulled peanut candies, fresh sugarcane juice, chicken-curry puffs, and more. (12631 Vulcan Way, Richmond, British Columbia, Canada)


Bordered by shops selling meat and fresh, smoked, and pickled fish, Munich's main market is a snackers' paradise: stands offer hot liver pate, and weisswurst, schweinshaxen (roasted pork knuckle), speck, and lemon-spiked Munich weissbier. (Am Viktualienmarket, Munich, Germany)

Dolac Market

Zagreb's most popular open-air market—and one of the best in Eastern Europe—has existed in roughly the same spot since the 17th century. Come here for fresh sweet figs, pomegranates, baby Swiss chard, and Croatian specialties like Paski sir sheep's milk cheese and whole heads of pickled cabbage. (Dolac bb., north of Jelacic Square, Zagreb, Croatia)

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