Discover the 12 markets with the freshest produce in Andalucia
Andalucia food markets are still a very important part of life for Andalucians. Even today, there are many small markets spread out over every Andalucian town. For those interested in gastronomy, markets in Andalucia offer a wide range of exquisite fruit, fish, vegetables, meat, etc. Fruit freshly picked from the orchard, fish that still smells of the sea and a long list of foods that will immerse you in the quality and excellence to be found on this land. If you visit southern Spain, be sure to visit the best markets in Andalucia. A passionate experience that gives you the chance to get to know its people and exchange opinions at a meeting place for locals and visitors, in many cases combined with spectacular architecture.
1. Mercado de Barbate
The stallholders are so friendly that you will immediately feel the warmth and kindness of people from southern Spain. At the Mercado de Barbate you will find fresh produce ranging from traditional regional crops, such a peas, sweet potatoes and artichokes, to the best red tuna you can get, which is considered one of the highest quality fish in Andalucia. We recommend you visit the Gertrudis spice stall, since the proximity to Morocco means you can find a great fusion of flavours to season your food.
2. Mercado de Atarazanas in Málaga
Neo-Mudéjar in style, the Mercado de Atarazanas in Málaga is one of the most famous meeting points in the capital of the Costa del Sol. The stalls are passed down from generation to generation and are the sites of endless conversations with customers that give special life to the place. Be sure to try the fruit brought in from all over the province and get some fresh fish so you can cook one of the local specialities: fried fish. Don’t leave without seeing the colourful light etched by the glass at the back depicting an allegory of the city of Málaga.
3. Mercado de Abastos de Marbella
In the historic old quarter of Marbella is its Mercado de Abastos that gives the area even more traditional spirit of Andalucia, where the people eat from the sea and land. We suggest you take a stroll through the alleyways of the city centre and enjoy its rural aesthetic immersed in a cosmopolitan city, ending your walk by buying delicious vegetables, fruit, meat or fish to enjoy at home.
4. Mercado de Islantilla
Following the cry of “fresh fish” will lead you to this Huelva market with its delicacies freshly caught from the Atlantic Ocean. Be sure to buy Huelva white shrimp to grill with garlic and parsley. Its lively atmosphere combines with the constant hustle and bustle of people, where conversation and banter mix with the quality of the produce.
5. Mercado Central de Cádiz
The Mercado Central de Cádiz dates from the 19th century and has a neoclassical octagonal shape with a Doric style porticoed square. It has gone through several transformations through the years and has also been the subject of carnival songs, above all, when in 1928 the Mayor hired a vet to control and analyse the quality of the fruit and vegetables, also making the traders wear white uniforms with sleeve covers. The irony of this place has been preserved ever since and it brings together the province’s fresh produce, as well as the warm and friendly manner of its stallholders.
6. Mercado de Abastos de Ronda
The Mercado de Abastos de Ronda brings together a lifetime’s tradition, where you can find the freshest meat, fish, fruit and vegetables. The cured pork is the star, since this locality is famous for its artisanal sausages, chorizo and black pudding, which are constantly ordered by locals and visitors. If you pass through the city of Tajo, be sure to visit this place and do some healthy food shopping.
7. Mercado Municipal de Cartaya
The Mercado Municipal de Cartaya is a modern spacious building, while still preserving a very traditional touch. It comprises four floors where you can easily get lost amidst its stalls. Here you will find all manner of stalls and, given its size, the variety is huge. A good plan would be to buy a little fruit when it has just arrived in the morning and head to El Rompido Beach to spend the day by the sea. Could you ask for anything more?
8. Mercado de Abastos de Estepona
Built on the ruins of a Christian castle, this site is now occupied by the Mercado de Abastos de Estepona. As well as being a daily meeting point for locals to get the best fresh produce, it is also a tourist attraction. Its interior has a lovely garden with flowers that fill its grounds. Be sure to visit this market to find out first-hand about its singular essence.
9. Lonja de Isla Cristina
Today, the Isla Cristina fishing port is the most important one in Andalucia and one of the top ports in the country for both its fleet, which is dedicated to catching fresh fish and seafood each day, and for the respect its produce has earned in domestic and international markets. Visit and buy the best seafood caught in the Atlantic Ocean and enjoy this traditional way of trading that all market visitors love.
10. Mercado de Abastos de Conil
The Mercado de Abastos de Conil is natural and conserves the traditional Andalucian market essence as a morning meeting place for locals, where stories are exchanged and the freshest produce is bought. Here you will find fresh fish, such as traditionally caught tuna, sea bream, snapper, cuttlefish and fruit and vegetables, such as tomatoes, peppers, potatoes, melons and watermelons, as well as farm reared meats and its famous sausages such as butifarra. This is where you will find the freshest local produce at the best price
11. Puerto Real Food Market
The Puerto Real Food Market is a Neoclassical reconstruction of the prestigious architect Torcuato Benjumeda and dates back to the 18th century. The building still preserves its original structure and this market, like almost all markets, is split into four passageways to form a square where the different stalls are located.
Due to its location in the heart of Cádiz, this market’s most interesting stalls are fish-related, though there are also greengrocers, butchers, bakers and spice stalls. Also worth a visit are the Patricio olive stall and the Cosano deli, two stalls with amazing offerings, both in the quality of their produce and in the price.
12. Huelin Food Market
After Atarazanas Market, Málaga’s biggest and most traditional market is the one located in Huelin. It was built in 1974, and currently has 161 stalls, which is why it is ideal for all types of fresh produce.
Interestingly, it should also be said that it has an excellent cafe bar that is famous for offering a daily set menu at a symbolic price and, as such, is the cheapest in Spain.
WHERE TO STAY
If you want to discover these markets be sure to stay in the best hotels. Your best accommodation option is undoubtedly Fuerte Hoteles. The chain has establishments where you can enjoy not only its services, but also the best of Andalucia’s geography. Its 50 plus years of experience serve as the best guarantee of service, enabling you to spend your time visiting the best destinations and buying the freshest local produce. Marbella, Conil, Grazalema, El Rompido, Estepona and Torrox are just some of the places where you can find these amazing hotels close to all these wonderful markets we have recommended.