With fresh, mouth-watering produce, farmers’ markets are an excellent place to shop for your groceries. Expect in-season fruit and vegetables, prime cuts of meat, delicious seafood, and other locally produced wonders: beer, jams, chocolates — the list continues. Scotland has over 50 of these markets to choose from. Here are nine of the best.
Aberdeen Country Fair
One of the largest markets in the country, on the last Saturday of each month Aberdeen plays host to a remarkable variety of stalls, right in the centre of the city. Extra dates are added when there are special events or holidays, such as at Christmas. With over 40 stallholders, there’s something to satisfy everyone.
On the second Saturday of the month, Stirling holds a market famed for a huge range of produce, from Scottish Highland beef and lamb, through tablet to local cheeses, mead, smoked fish and even gluten-free baking. The passion the stallholders put into their products is evident.
This market holds the distinction of being the first in Scotland and is surrounded by some of the most fertile areas of the country. Expect wonderful seasonal vegetables, organic meat, between 40 and 45 stalls, and even a cookery demonstration utilising ingredients from the market. This market is open between 9am and 2pm, on the first Saturday of the month.
Tayside has long been associated with the growing of berries: strawberries, raspberries and the local tayberries (a cross between a red raspberry and a blackberry). All of these can be found here when in season and, when they have yet to fruit, there are plenty of jams to choose from. Dundee Farmers’ Market is held on the third Saturday of each month.
An iconic setting certainly doesn’t hurt this award-winning market. With over 60 stalls and the famous castle looming above, the farmers’ market in Edinburgh was listed as one of the best farmers’ markets in the world, not just Scotland. Around a quarter of the stalls sell meat, including venison, beef and even ostrich. Taking place every Saturday, if you are in the city there really is little excuse not to visit.
Glasgow is lucky enough to hold farmers’ markets in two excellent locations: Mansfield Park and Queen’s Park. The former was the original market, held every second and fourth Saturday of the month and situated in the northern part of the city, selling everything from honey to fresh trout. Glasgow Southside Farmers’ Market was set up to complement Mansfield Park and is held every first and third Saturday of the month. Both markets are flourishing and there is also often entertainment provided.
If you enjoy fresh fish and seafood, then this is the market for you. Fencebay is held on the last Sunday of the month, inside a traditional Ayrshire barn. This means that even if it is raining, then there’s no reason not to visit. As well as the fruits of the sea, there are also fine wines, traditional crafts, and other local produce on offer.
This long-running market is famous for offering a delicious array of tasty food, including locally grown garlic, seafood from local fishermen, hand-crafted jewellery, and even living plants from local nurseries. Held on the first Saturday of each month, the market draws in people and producers from across the Highland area, who are often kept entertained by a local ceilidh band.