I go crazy over farmers’ markets. There’s something about the rows and rows of colorful fruits and vegetables, fresh loaves of breads sitting on counters, cheese counters with free samples and many other miscellaneous produces whose names I never know that makes me wake up on weekend mornings to head to the markets.
Except, in Paris, farmers’ markets aren’t just opened on the weekends! To me, going to farmers’ markets in the United States has always been more of a special, weekend occasion. In Paris, there are way more markets in general – but especially food ones. Most of them are opened during the week, way more accessible, and generally just more down-to-earth with friendlier prices and actual fresh produces. These markets are one of the few things I love the most about the Paris, the others having something to do with baguettes. But that’s for later.
So far I’ve only visited three of them and apart from one, they were pretty amazing. I hit up:
Marché Bastille (12th arr., Bastille)
The biggest outdoors food market in Paris, it’s by far the best food market I have ever been to. I felt like the girl from Shopaholic inside a designer clothing store on sale. The market is huge, food is cheap, you can literally find anything you want (food or non-food) and everything just screams local and fresh. You can find the most in-season produces there with the fraction of the prices in supermarkets.
Marché Saint-Germain (7th arr.)
Okay, so this was kind of a disappointment. Perhaps we went late (3PM on a Saturday), but only several vendors were opened and not much was left. To be fair, this market is located right in the middle of the city, which perhaps explains the narrow selections and somewhat high prices. We got some cheese and ended up getting more food from a supermarket.
Marché des Enfants Rouges (3rd arr., Le Marais)
More of a hub of food vendors than an actual market (although there are still fresh produces available), here is where you will find several of Paris’ most popular cheap eats. From giant sandwiches and galettes crafted by Chez Alain Miam Miam to Moroccan delicacies from Le Traiteur Marocain, you can find a diverse array of cuisines without breaking your bank. I also got some really fresh salad lettuces here and made a dope salad for lunch the next day.
After some friends and I visited the food markets, things only got better – the PICNIC afterwards. Yes, yes, yes. After happily shopping for food, we found a beautiful park or garden, sat down in the shades, spread out a blanket, took Instagrammable pictures, and just dove in. We were lucky to have amazingly warm and sunny Parisian weather during my first several weeks here. Sunshine, fresh food, good vibes with friends, a couple casually making out in the background near another bush – what more can you ask for?
The experience was absolutely gorgeous. I cannot think of a better way to spend a weekend.