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Best of Canberra – Markets

By Gabrielle Kneipp - 4 November 2015 5

fresh fruit and vegetables

I like the idea of visiting the local market for groceries; the food is fresh and nutritious, it is a way of supporting the community and local producers and a fun way of doing the shopping while catching up with a friend. It’s even better if the markets include arts, crafts and activities.

Now that the Gorman House Markets are back as the Canberra City Walk Markets (in Petrie Plaza between the merry-go-round and London Circuit in Civic from 10am to 4pm Saturdays) and Westside offers markets, the award-winning Bus Depot Markets at Kingston have some competition again.

But perhaps you prefer the straight food markets like the Capital Region Farmers Market at Epic or Southside Farmers Market at Woden CIT, or the four- or five-day markets at Fyshwick and Belconnen?

There are specialty markets, too, for trash and treasure, for kids clothing and equipment and for handmade items.

So tell me Canberra, which market is the best to shop at?

To vote, let me know your favourite in the comments below. I’ll visit the two most popular markets and decide the verdict in next week’s article.

What’s Your opinion?


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5 Responses to
Best of Canberra – Markets
Charlotte Harper 2:36 pm 05 Nov 15

True. Let’s split this into two Best Ofs, this first one for fresh produce markets and a later one for arts, crafts markets etc. That’ll give Gabrielle time to visit more of the contenders for the second.

Alexandra Craig 1:52 pm 05 Nov 15

The Handmade Market 100%

However it’ll be tough to ‘test’ it this week as the next market isn’t on for another couple of weeks I think.

Genie 1:47 pm 04 Nov 15

I agree with Zan, you can’t compare a lot of the markets against each other. The Farmers Markets (both Northside and Southside) are vastly different to say the Handmade Markets. You’re comparing arts & crafts to fruits & veggies.

Over the last 10 years I have frequented many, many markets as a stallholder, organiser and shopper and would provide the following guides.

Hall Markets – First Sunday of each month, Hall Showgrounds
An all-time favourite market of mine, I have been a stall holder on and off for more than a decade now. I love the local crafted products, fresh food and always come home with homemade treats for my puppy. Everything is really affordable and the whole event supports Hartley Life Care.

Handmade Markets – Quarterly, EPIC
I have to admit I’m not a huge fan of the Handmade Markets but if I’m free I usually make an effort to go for a wander. While this is a grand market getting bigger and bigger with each event, I have noticed of late that products are becoming too expensive for the average income earner. I was however highly impressed by the food hall at the most recent market.
Definitely fits the tag of Canberra’s Upmarket

Northside Farmers Market – 730-1130am Saturdays, EPIC
As a Northsider I have only ever frequented the EPIC Farmers Markets and if you don’t like crowds, this isn’t the market for you. Always packed no matter what time of the morning you attend but the quality of goods does not disappoint. While prices have skyrocketed recently and are more in line with supermarket prices, the produce is much fresher and the money is going into the farmers pocket. I buy very little processed goods these days and can easily do a week’s grocery shop at the farmers markets, get some bones for the puppy and even grab some plants/herbs for the garden or flowers to brighten up the home.

Bus Depot Markets – Sundays, Bus Depot Kingston.
I have to admit it’s been a few months since I have last attended these markets, I got a little bored with rarely seeing new stallholders and having to wait in long queues for a meal. I’m very interested to revisit and check out their new food halls.

Westside Acton Park Markets – Sundays, Westside Acton Park
This market has a lot of potential but I just don’t think it’s reached it as yet; I’m loving seeing this market grow and grow into something fabulous. Stall holders vary from recycled goods/clothes, handmade products and new products. There are regular stall holders there each week while most of the others rotate and attend sporadically. The permanent food stalls are the highlight of each visit.

Trash & Treasure – Jamison and Woden, every Sunday
I’m not one for buying second hand goods, but the thing I love about these markets is you never know what bargain you’re going to find.

Native Plant Market – 1st Saturday of each month, Heritage Nursery Yarralumla
One for garden lovers! The Heritage Nursery opens up a space for local plant growers once a month to sell their natives. It’s on this Saturday and you can pick up some seedlings for only a few $$ each. Most of the plants are seedlings, but as a garden newbie, talking to these growers is quite informative.

I haven’t attended the following markets for a while but they are very similar to Hall Markets.
Gold Creek Markets – 3rd Sunday of each month, Ginninderra Village
Tuggeranong Homestead – 2nd Sunday of each month, Tuggeranong Homestead
Tuggeranong Hyperdome Markets – 2nd and Last Saturday of each month, between Target and the Good Guys

Holden Caulfield 1:00 pm 04 Nov 15

Hate to say it, but like Floriade, I think the Old Bus Depot Markets are terribly overrated.

Not sure what keeps bringing people back. I went to OBDM for some “cheap” food last weekend and after seeing my $14 return a small plate of not entirely appealing food it merely confirmed my opinions. Confirmation bias, perhaps, but I really did want my mind to be changed.

Sadly, it wasn’t.

There’s countless better food options in Kingston on the weekends. I am sorry I missed the Forage a few weeks back though, I expect that would have been a better experience than the usual fare.

Zan 10:44 am 04 Nov 15

Well you cannot compare say Epic Markets with Old Bus Depot markets as they are very different. Equally you cannot compare Jamieson Trash and Treasure with say Fyshwick markets either. It is like comparing a bicycle to a motorcycle, a car to a tank. They are all different and sell different things.

I love the Epic markets are they remind me of the cosmopolitan Queen Victoria Markets in Melbourne just near the city. I do not go often as I live on the other side though. I do go to the Southside Farmers Market, Trash & Treasure Woden (not as good as it used to be). Most Sundays I go to the Old Bus Depot markets for lunch (cheap eats and great foods) and to look around and it is where I buy most of my presents for birthday and Christmas.

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