European Road Trip – Chapter Two – Market Day

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Margo and Vera at the St. Remy Market

Any visit to the Provence Region in the south of France would not be complete without a visit to the local markets in the small towns of the area.

The markets are morning affairs, from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m., featuring not only food products from local farmers but also clothes, leather goods, jewelry and other personal items. Each town holds its weekly market on a particular day of the week and the vendors and entertainers will follow the schedule setting up in each town centre in turn.

Market day in St. Remy

Wednesday is market day in the town of Saint Remy, Provence. The market spills out from the parking area and occupies the narrow streets of the central town area.

Visiting an open-air market in Provence is one of life’s little pleasures. Market day has been a way of life for Provençals as well as most Europeans for generations. The market serves as much as a social function as an opportunity to shop, bringing together the community each week. For the tourist or new resident, visiting an open-air market not only allows them to interact with the locals but also it provides a glimpse into everyday life in Provence.

Roussillon Market

Markets provide an opportunity for local residents to get out of the house and shop for local food items, fashion accessories and personal care items without have to travel to larger centres to shop in major stores.

Leonard and his trio at St. Remy
Buying fabrics at the Lourmarin market

The garlic in Provence is much sweeter than any you may have had. There are rules to be followed in preparing and serving it. Garlic is chopped not pressed.

Roasted garlic is eaten as a vegetable and is meant to be savoured in small amounts.

Eggplant, tomatoes and garlic are “provençal”.