Best markets in Canada

May's mild weather gives rise to a favourite pastime with market stalls across the country opening up to sell everything from jams to jewels!

Aberfoyle Antique Market, Guelph, Ontario

Aberfoyle Antique Market, Guelph, Ontario (Photo credit: Janet Panchuk)

Market Collective, Calgary, Alberta

Market Collective, Calgary, Alberta (Photo credit: Nicole Irene)

Bastion Square Markets, Victoria, British Columbia

Bastion Square Markets, Victoria, British Columbia (Photo credit: Ken Kelly)

Cottonwood Falls Market, Nelson, British Columbia

Cottonwood Falls Market, Nelson, British Columbia (Photo credit: David Reid)

A woman standing with a red bicycle looking at vegetables in farmers' market

Photo credit: Michael Piazza / Foodpix

Mini Woodstock: Cottonwood Falls Market
Nelson, British Columbia

Scene: Sprawl out and people-watch on lush green grass or join hippies and artists to be serenaded by local musicians at the base of the Cottonwood Falls.
Score: Boho essentials like incense, oils and herbs and customized cremation urns.
Up to 50 vendors, Saturdays, May 19 to October 27..

Historic craft fair: Bastion Square Markets

Scene: Absorb the architecture and ambience of Bastion Square, which boomed during the gold rush of 1858. Today it’s a cultural hub, home to a creative Artisan Fair and Farmers’ Market.
Stained glass decorations and jewellery hand made from old cutlery.
Up to 65 vendors, Thursday to Sunday, May 3 to September 30.

Contemporary fashion: Market Collective

Scene: You’ll see mannequins clad in freshly sewn designs and hear alternative live music non-stop in this energetic centre that houses all kinds of imagination.
A toe-tapping good time and a locally designed and produced wardrobe.
75 vendors, one weekend a month (in May, the 26th and 27th).

Foodie fest: Saskatoon Farmers’ Market

Scene: Buskers strum away near the bank of the South Saskatchewan River where this market opens outdoors for the summer months.
All manner of edible treats made from the local, blueberry- like saskatoon berry, including heavenly pies.
Scope: Over 100 vendors, Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays, year-round.

Treasure hunt:
Aberfoyle Antique Market
Guelph, Ontario

Scene: Roam more than 20 acres of cabins, stalls and barns at Canada’s largest antique market, while imagining the histories of the miscellany of items around you.
A new family heirloom, vintage-furniture-like dresser or Louis XV chair to reupholster, and retro Coca-Cola signs.
Over 100 dealers, Sundays, April 29 to October 28; Spring Special Antique Show, May 12.

Arty fix: Artscape Art Markets

Scene: Drop in at vendors’ studios and watch them in action at the cobblestoned Distillery District and the Wychwood Barns.
One-of-a-kind paintings and prints by local artists.
Distillery Art Market, 20 vendors, weekends, May to September. 55 Mill St. Barns Art Market, 25 vendors, monthly, May to October (in May, the 26th).

Mega market: Lachute Farmers’ Market, flea market and horse auction
Lachute, Quebec

Scene: The market of all markets is abuzz with antiques, food, entertainment and horse bidding. Score: A fine filly, obviously. (And the chance to live out your Princess Bride fantasy!)
Up to 500 vendors, Tuesdays and Sundays, year-round.

Ready-made picnic: Hubbards Farmers’ Market
Nova Scotia

Scene: With six acres of woodlands, walking paths, picturesque gardens and even a babbling brook — plus every artisanal food from smoked fish to organic coffee — this market is a must for nature lovers.
Homemade gourmet dog treats to spoil Fido.
35 to 45 vendors, Saturdays, May to October.

Eco and friendly: Fireweed Community Market
Whitehorse, Yukon

Scene: This riverside community initiative is about learning and spending: Between bites, take in a free workshop on transplanting seedlings or making biodiesel.
Know-how and fresh homemade fare, from bison burgers to fish & chips.
25 to 45 vendors, Thursdays, May 17 to mid-September.

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