If there is one thing that most locals look forward to in the summer, it’s market season. Sure, the beaches all over Vancouver Island are stunning and yes, there are endless cycling and hiking adventures to be had, but market day is special. It’s the place to go to support local growers and makers and where you can find incredible, fresh, high-quality foods and beautiful, unique gifts! And if that wasn’t enough, market days have a celebratory vibe to them and they’re a great way to spend a sunny afternoon getting to know the area and the locals a little better. So no matter if you’re just browsing, looking to try some locally grown foods or hoping to grab a special gift, markets are the place to go!
Moss Street Market: May to October 10am – 2pm, November – April 10am – 1pm every Saturday
For over three decades, the Moss Street Market has hosted vendors from all over the city and surrounding areas in the heart of Fairfield – and this year is no different. With over fifty vendor tents to peruse you can find an eclectic and delightful gathering of local artists, growers, and producers at this beloved market. With live music and great food, anyone staying at Manor Suite Off Rockland, Barkley Manor Executive or Landmark Executive Sub-Penthouse can wander down, enjoy the music, stock up on the most incredible food and produce, support a local artisans and soak up life in this lively community! For a complete list of the markets around Victoria, check out our blog post about them here!
The Sidney Street Market: May 8th to September 25th every Sunday 11am – 3pm
Sidney by the Sea is one of the best kept secrets on Vancouver Island. With its beautiful, walkable downtown core, picturesque seaside trail and marina, and incredible dining scene, it’s the perfect place to be if you’re looking for seaside tranquility and urban amenities. Every Sunday during the summer and early fall, the grounds of the Mary Winspear Theater is transformed into an outdoor pedestrian mall with vendors, music, and delicious smells floating on the fresh ocean breezes. If you’re staying a walk away at Bazan Bay Beach House, Heron View Cottage, Resthaven Cottage or Miraloma 209 you can take a stroll to check it out without having to worry about parking! And if you’re staying elsewhere on the top of the Peninsula at Patricia Bay Beach House, Pendray House or Herons Landing, consider taking a cycle over to enjoy it! Here, you’ll find row upon row of local farmers, food producers and artisans offering fresh produce, ethically raised meat, gorgeous art, and incredible crafts. It’s the perfect way to spend a Sunday in Sidney!
Duncan Farmers Market: April 2nd to TBA every Saturday 9am – 2pm and 10am – 2pm fall and winter season
When you’re staying is the stunning Cowichan Valley at Beachside Cottage on Saanich Inlet, Beachside Living at Cherry Point, or Cowichan Valley Wine Country Retreat, a great way to spend a weekend is to explore the little town centres throughout the valley – especially when it’s market season! One of the best and most long-standing markets is the Duncan Farmers Market. Located in the historic downtown area, the Duncan Farmers Market is an incredible community market. Since it’s conception, it has grown each year and now, it has over 100 vendors selling an enormous array of produce, prepared foods, handmade goods and more. Plus, when you’re finished at the market, you still have the quaint downtown centre to explore!
Nanaimo Downtown Farmers Market: May 7th to September 10th every Saturday 10am – 2pm
While you’re in the Nanaimo area at the beautiful Hammond Bay Executive Stay or tranquil Nanoose Bay Country Home, if you’re looking for a great place to find local goods, the Nanaimo Farmers Market is a must! From early May to September, right next to the historic Bastion on Front Street you can find a collection of incredible growers and craftspeople offering some of the most incredible fruit, veggies, flowers, handmade homewares, beauty and wellness products, preserves, meat, seafood and so much more. Plus, for the entire season, there are so many events and activities for the entire family! This market really is the make bake or grow centre of Nanaimo!
Parksville & Qualicum Beach:
While you’re in the Parksville and Qualicum Beach area, exploring the beaches, enjoying the incredible nature and relaxing in style at White Heron Oceanfront Estate and Columbia Beach House, you must visit these two incredible markets!
Errington Farmers Market: May to September 10am – 1pm every Saturday
This is the place for anything made, baked, grown, raised or foraged in the Parksville area! Since the early 1970s, this community market has been serving the Errington, Parksville, Coombs, Hilliers and Whiskey Creek connecting local farmers and producers with local customers. At this incredible little market you can meet friendly locals, ask the vendors questions and get help finding your perfect ingredients for a wonderful dinner, get unique gifts, fresh seafood and meat, eggs and so much more!
Qualicum Beach Farmers Market: Year round 8:30am – 12pm every Saturday
Central Vancouver Island has a wealth of farms, both large and small and attracts artisans from all over the world who seek out the tranquility of Vancouver Island. Every weekend, all year ‘round, the Qualicum Beach Farmers Market gives you access to a small portion of the incredible wealth of the island. From beautiful, handcrafted goods, top quality produce, flowers, and other food items, there is so much to see – and buy – at this lovely local market!