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Find Out Why You Should Not Miss Haarlem Market

Haarlem Market

We realize that as a tourist searching for information on things to do in Haarlem, or what to see or to do while here, often find a reference to the Saturday Market. Although at this point it has become not so “off the beaten path” anymore. Nevertheless, we want to tell you a little more about it.

What is the deal with this Market?

Over centuries, markets have always remained lively meeting places; trade and catering going well together! In the 15th century Haarlem had about fifty different markets, every day the goods were delivered by ship across the Spaarne-River. What was more accessible than mooring with your vessel and trading directly on the quay. The street names still refer to the goods that were traded here, pig-, hay-, wood-, peat-street. There were also daily markets selling potatoes, apples and pears as well as a linen, cloth and garment market.

Nowadays, it seems that markets experience a revival. I don’t remember the first time I heard about the Haarlem Market. I must have read an article about it or heard it from someone. While many Dutch stopped going to local markets and instead drive to supermarkets (with parking lots), it seems this is not the case in Haarlem. Every Saturday it seems the city shops on the local market, rain or shine!

And I do the same, my husband and I get up on Saturday mornings and go there to get our weekly fix of fresh produce, veggies, eggs, fish, meat, pastries, herbs and even locally roasted coffee beans. And it is incredible when the lady in the fish stall automatically prepares you a portion of your weekly order of ‘Kibbeling’ (fried fish) before you even could order and wishes you a lovely weekend, see you next week before she turns to the next customer. This is when you know you are part of something special.

Typically my husband and I start by getting our vegetables and fruits first. Then we continue towards the herbs, picking up a coffee from a trolly service – having a chat on how the business is going before we continue towards the butcher. We buy our fresh eggs, our pork and fish and handmade pasta. By now our bag is full, and we would be ready for someone to take our shopping to the car. No one does, some might come by bike, but in fact we have to carry our shopping ourselves, and we do it with a smile on our faces and maybe with another stop along the route.

What about you? Have you been to the market? Is it one of the places on your must-see list? If it is, don’t miss out on our Bustling Haarlem Food Tour that takes you there for a real feel of the Market!


Enjoy Haarlem
Your Food Journeys Team