Today, Mr. C and I decided to go to the Mercado Central, Valencia’s central market.
The Mercado Central is a huge, wonderful, terrifying, overwhelming, fun place to go to. This place puts any Farmer’s Market I’ve seen in the states to shame! Being built in 1914, this market is considered to be one of the oldest European markets still running. There is a local legend that there has always been some sort of market located here since the 14th century due to its central position in the city.
When you walk in, you are surrounded by an abundance of bright colors and smells. Once you get over your shock to the sheer size of the market itself, you are able to look at the atmosphere around you. There is a bustle of people buying and selling whatever their trade may be: fresh fish, meats, fruit, vegetables, candy, nuts, etc. The building is home to over 400 vendors, which are categorized in ambiguous sections depending on what they are selling. (Also, the man’s face in the next picture kills me! haha)
I naturally was in heaven with some of the vendors, especially the ones selling any kind of bread or cheese. One vendor literally had spinning displays of bread. SPINNING BREAD. How could you say no?! Other vendors took some convincing since their booths looked like a terrible horror film with the amount of bloody, dead animal parts hanging from their signs.
One vendor, in particular, stood out to me because it was a little, old woman selling different chocolate delicacies. I started to look at what she was selling and was immediately in love. For those of you that do not know me, you need a little backstory. I have wanted a pet hedgehog for quite a while. Once Mr. C told me that we were moving to Spain, I began my research on pet policies overseas, only to find out that it is illegal to own hedgehogs in Spain. Needless to say, when I saw these little guys, I couldn’t say no! The lady was so nice and friendly to us that I wanted to share!
Walking around this market, or even looking at pictures, will give anyone a snapshot into the Spanish life or maybe just some food for thought.
Adventure Lesson Learned: Sometimes, it is alright to talk with strangers. They may give you the best part of your day.