Nassau, the largest city of the Bahamas, is an island popular for its picturesque pastel buildings, superb beaches, sumptuous seafood, and colorful coral reefs. Markets here are vibrant and full of Caribbean flare, offering various handmade crafts and souvenirs for visitors to treasure long after they’ve returned home. Here is our list of the best markets in the Bahamas breezy capital.
The internationally acclaimed Nassau Straw Marketis more than a set of stalls selling crafts and souvenirs; it is truly a sight to behold, home to handmade Bahamian goods, local foods, and the splendid spectacle of hundreds of intricately woven straw gifts. The original straw market of the region, it has enjoyed rapid growth since the 1940s, and is theplace to purchase cute, hand-woven hats, bags, mats and dolls, as well as wood carvings and conch shell jewelry. Surrounded by the high-end shops of Bay Street, the vendors here are extremely friendly and are always willing to negotiate costs. The hundreds of producers set up their stands daily from 8am to 8pm in this exquisite open-air market.
Doongalik Farmer’s Market is open every Saturday from 9am until 1pm in Nassau, and is a celebration of healthy Bahamian eating, selling a variety of delicious goods from local, organic farms. Here customers can find an array of treats including cucumbers, bananas, fresh greens, herbs, sprouts, and colorful sweet peppers as well as locally-sourced artisan products, including fruit sorbets, lion fish fillets and baked crab. Reputable vendors supply all the fresh produce here, including Happy Farms, which provides the organic eggs, and Sunset Organic Farms, which contributes kale, beets, and other healthy vegetables. The market is set in a picturesque gated courtyard featuring a pretty garden, beautiful homemade Bahamian sculptures and a main house with a large wraparound porch. Be sure to stop by for your fix of healthy and clean recipe ideas, and if visitors are artistically inclined, don’t miss the art gallery also operated by Doongalik. The center is owned by two passionate artists dedicated to celebrating what is uniquely Bahamian, through both art and food.
Featuring rows of wooden tables adorned with an array of fresh seafood, Montagu Beach Fish Market is home to one of the largest market selections of fish in The Bahamas, set on the sands of the idyllic Montagu Beach. Choose from snapper, grouper, shrimp and lobster, either from the large iced coolers or from the tables themselves. Some vendors sell their catches directly from their boats, offering a freshness which is impossible to beat, and fish preparation services are available for a small fee. There are also fruits, vegetables, and spices available at the market, with sour oranges and hot peppers are two of the most popular food choices here.
Super Value and Quality Supermarkets was opened in 1965 by Mr. Rupert Roberts and has been family owned and operated ever since. It now stands as the leading chain of Bahamian supermarkets, and is open from 7am until 9pm daily. Mr. Roberts focuses on providing international as well as local products, and ensures that customers with dietary restrictions are catered for by providing a range of gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan culinary options. Super Value offers renowned speciality platters, including vegetable, fruit and dessert varieties featuring a colorful assortment of each product.
Guaranteeing great customer service, Solomon’s Fresh Market aims to support healthy living, to contribute to the local community and to preserve the environment for future generations. Customers can purchase a wealth of organic options here, including cereals, nut butters, soups, broths and skincare products. Offering free health seminars, recipe listings, health supplement affiliations and a delivery service, this market is a bustling hub of activity dedicated to bettering The Bahamas through more than just their products. It operates an important children’s club, a group which educates its members on the importance of earth care, animal care, community care and health care.
With over 45 different stalls, Festival Place is home to some of the most authentic, intricate and interesting Bahamian crafts. The building is designed with lively colors, a style which calls to mind the vibrant, small-island community trading of the past, a practice where crafts were handmade and sold enthusiastically among villages. Festival Place keeps this history alive, and offers authentic treats such as sweet coconut and pineapple tarts and hair braiding. Visitors here can also participate in land or water tours, allowing for an in-depth education on both the marketplace and the city of Nassau. Festival Place opens daily at 8am, and on Tuesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays, many of the craftspeople join with customers to enjoy dancing and live music at the indoor square.