Market Day; St Lucia

No island stay should be complete without a visit to the local market on Saturday morning. Saturday market day is synonyms with island life, and even though we can readily purchase produce from the supermarket or mega stores on any day and well into the night, the Saturday morning market experience cannot be duplicated.
Castries Market

Tradition is to rise early in the morning to get to the market before the sun is up, first to get the best produce on offer, to get away from the crowds and also to finish in time to have the rest of the day for other duties. I am not of that theory, early mornings are not my forte, so I stroll in about mid morning, before the sun is baring down so hot you cannot think but after I am actually awake.

Castries Market

Fresh Produce at Castries Market

What is great about market life?

The freshness of course. If you like fresh fruits, fresh vegetables, fresh herbs, then market life is for you. There are also the agri products like the jams, chutneys and sauces. If you visit the islands and do not take good pepper sauce for your friends, you are not a real friend… ☻

St Lucia Market

St Lucia Market

The ambiance of market life brings together a real island vibe. From the vendors trying to out shout each other, the scents of island treats being done on the spot and more and more recently, the local entertainment, you can get a free concert on your morning market journey.

Let’s be honest here, market life in some countries will definitely be not for the timid. In some cases you have to barter for your produce, vendors will take one look at you and immediately try to charge you the “tourist price”. Don’t be a sucker. Also, they will try to hound you to get you to but something you probably don’t need or to get you to buy from them as oppose to their fellow vendors. That’s okay, remember as the buyer you have the upper hand,  so stroll around and see all there is to offer and then make your decision. I like to buy from a few persons just to share the $$$ around. Having been a “vendor” myself, I can attest that is not an easy profession, I have so much more respect for vendors now.

Spices St Lucia

On this trip to the market in St Lucia, I secured some familiar goodies, guavas, sugar apples and mandarins. Even though I live on an island, there are some fruits I don’t see as often these days so I do enjoy being able to get them elsewhere especially for the cheap.

Castries Market

Local Produce from Castries Market

On this visit, I picked up some spices as well, and was disappointed that I had to leave the fresh crab going at less than USD $5 for 2 but there was a lot of entertainment around the market that morning which really added to the experience. I am still annoyed that I left the fresh vanilla pods thinking I was going to return before I left St Lucia. Lesson learnt, don’t leave items when on a market trip.

 

Fresh Crab

Where are your favourite markets and what do you buy?

 

 

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