The sun is out and what could be more fun than buying some fresh fruit and vegetables, or some cool records or books at an outdoor market? Inside Rotterdam has hand-picked the city’s must-visit markets just for you.
Words: Liza Karsemeijer Photography: Chymomore
This is the city’s biggest and most popular market. With more than 400 stalls, it’s also one of the country’s largest open-air markets. You can buy everything from fresh fruit and vegetables, to fish, cheese, herbs, spices, cookies and sweets, flowers, plants, jewellery, fabrics and haberdashery, second-hand clothes and accessories, new and used furniture, electronics and much much more. The prices are considerably lower than in Dutch supermarkets — at some stalls you can buy 10 avocados or a big watermelon for only two euros. This does mean that it can get quite busy, especially on Saturdays, so be sure to arrive early to avoid the crowds. Getting hungry during your shopping spree? Grab a snack at one of the food stalls. Choose from fried fish, lumpias, Turkish pizza or fries — or go for the full Dutch experience and try “een broodje haring met uitjes” (raw herring with onions in a bread roll).
> Binnenrotte (next to the Markthal), every Tuesday and Saturday from 8.00-17.00h.
Markt Afrikaanderplein Rotterdam-Zuid
With 300 stalls, this is the third biggest market in Holland. The great thing about this market is that the products reflect the multicultural neighbourhood, so you’re guaranteed to find exotic fruits and spices for a really fair price. From Dutch herring to Vietnamese lumpias, and Moroccan spices to veg from Suriname — you’ll find them all here. Plus, another perk is if you come by car, then you’ll find a free parking spot close to the market.
> Afrikaanderplein (close to metro stop Maashaven), every Wednesday and Saturday from 8.00-17.00h.
Despite being slightly smaller, this local farmer’s market is a real treat, attracting regional producers and growers selling organic vegetables, bread, meat, dairy and more. You can also find more specialist fare, such as stick beans, urban honey, beetroots from the city farm and locally-made sausages. The joy of this market is meeting the locals and hearing the stories behind the food — the producers will be more than happy to share their recipes and cooking tips. When the sun is out, there’s also a nice terrace, perfect for a picnic, as well as live performances by local singer-songwriters. Rotterdamse Oogstmarkt takes place every other week on two different locations.
> Every first Saturday of the month on Noordplein and every third Saturday of the month on Heemraadsplein, 10.00-17.00h
Biologische Markt Eendrachtsplein
Another must-visit for fans of organic food, this small weekly market in the city centre sells fruit, vegetables, cheese, dairy produce, fresh meat and bread. Everything is pesticide-free and much of it is made by small producers in the Rotterdam area.
> Eendrachtsplein (next to metro stop Eendrachtsplein), every Tuesday from 9.00-17.30h.
If you enjoy shopping for homeware, jewellery and vintage fashion, then this hip lifestyle market is the place to go. Swan Market started years ago with a few stalls on Rotterdam’s Zwaanshals (hence the name), selling hand-made clothes and accessories. It has now grown to become one of the biggest lifestyle markets in Holland and Belgium. Creative entrepreneurs come to sell everything from bags made from old tyres to art and vintage dresses. You can also buy all manner of delicious food, from locally-sourced bread to the cutest cupcakes. All in all, it’s more of a day out than a shopping trip. With food trucks, live music and activities for kids, you can happily spend a few hours there.
> Once a month on different locations (for example on June 24, July 29, August 26 and September 23 at Parklaan); be sure to check swanmarket.nl beforehand. Entrance is €2.
Plus, there’s more…
Besides all these, Rotterdam is also home to indoor markets that are open every day of the week. The most famous is, of course, De Markthal, which is one of the city’s most visited architectonic attractions with a permanent market inside. If you prefer a less touristy and more industrial setting, be sure to visit Fenix Food Factory. This indoor market in an old warehouse hosts several Rotterdam-based producers of bread, meat and cheese, as well as beer, cider and coffee stalls. Also worth a visit is Marché 010, a smaller market hall with fresh-produce stalls. And for the thrifty among us, there’s Jouw Marktkraam in Rotterdam-Noord, a huge space with stalls that can be rented by sellers wanting to offload second-hand or handmade products.