Photo story: Visiting Mercat de St Antoni

I am a big fan of local markets. La Boqueria located at the tourist hotspot of Las Ramblas was colourful, but I felt was not authentic enough, and too crowded for me to enjoy the experience fully.

So we decided to visit the Mercat de St Antoni. Unfortunately, the authentic wooden building was undergoing renovation at the time we visited. Internet sources say renovation has been ongoing since 2013, and would be ready by mid 2015.

But our trip wasn’t wasted as we had the opportunity to visit the temporary air-conditioned market next door. It was clean, and there were a couple of food stalls and a decent tapas bar. It was a really authentic experience.

As that market was less popular with foreigners, we did attract much attention, having snails for breakfast that morning. A friendly Spaniard even stopped by to warn us about our DSLR camera which was sitting on the bar top. ‘In Barcelona, you can trust no one. I wouldn’t leave it there if  I were you.’ He said with a smile.

mercat de st antoni jamon
Visiting Mercat de St Antoni and I found some Jamon! (Ham)
mercat de st antoni vegetables
Zucchini, tomatoes and cucumbers of all types!
mercat de st antoni makeshift
Mercat de St Antoni – it’s much quieter and less packed than La Boqueria.
mercat de st antoni eggs
Eggs at the market
mercat de st antoni fish
Fish on sale
mercat de st antoni olives
Delicious seafood
mercat de st antoni  olives
An olive lovers paradise
mercat de st antoni butcher
Reading off his shopping list
mercat de st antoni
They even have herbs and canned food on sale.

 The Travelling Squid’s Take

Mercat de St Antoni isn’t for everybody. It may even bore you a little, especially if you’re looking for vibrant colours, food and culture. There isn’t much culture significance because of its location in the temporary down-sized air-conditioned center. Nonetheless, I  still enjoyed myself, because it was an authentic experience. Of how Barcelonians would visit the market to buy fresh fruits, vegetables and meat to whip up some really good paella and tortillas for lunch. I also enjoyed a rather unique tapas breakfast there, comprising snails and coffee – stay tuned for more!

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