Visitors to Prague are keen to try local food and drink; one of the best ways to do so is at a farmer’s market, where a full range of local produce is on sale.
Farmer’s markets, where farmers and producers sell directly to the public, have become more and more popular in Prague since they first appeared a year ago. The markets are held across the city, in large public spaces, and mostly run from spring to the autumn, although the market at the Holešovice Tržnice holešovice markets is open throughout the year. And if you’re visiting Prague in the run-up to Christmas, look out for local products on sale at some of the city’s Christmas markets.
Helping the local businesses and the environment
At the markets you can buy fresh fruit and vegetables, local cheeses, fish, sausages, pork and beef, bakery products, honey and much more. More unusual products are also sold at farmers’ markets, such as ice cream made from goats’ milk. All of these products have one thing in common: they are sourced in the Czech Republic, which means that when you buy from a farmers’ market, you can help support local businesses.
In addition, because the products are not transported over large distances, farmers’ markets are also better for the environment. Indeed, much of the produce on offer, such as fruit and vegetables or beef, is organic, which is indicated by the word “bio” in Czech, and all products meet certain quality standards.
Markets are also a good place to pick up fair trade items, which are becoming increasingly common in the Czech Republic, and products from smaller, more specialist firms. Such companies often emphasize traditional production methods, authenticity and quality, rather than selling to a large number of consumers. It’s a treat to buy from them because often their products are not found in the supermarkets, so you feel you have bought something special. You also know that you are paying for quality.
Naplavka, Prague 2
The most central of the markets in Prague is known as “Naplavka” and is located on the embankment immediately below Paláckého náměstí, close Palackého most (bridge). The farmers’ market is held on Saturday from 8.00 until 14.00, and around 40 stallholders trade there. There are excellent public transport connections, and the market is particularly convenient if you’re staying in one of the Bohemia Apartments Prague Old Town on Smetanovo nábřezí. The market is close to Karlovo náměstí metro station, on line “B”, and tram numbers 3, 4, 7, 10, 16, 17 and 21 pass through the two Paláckého náměstí tram stops adjacent to the metro station. The website www.farmarsketrziste.cz/en/ has more details about the Naplavka market and other markets in Prague run by the same organisation. The Farmářské trhy organisation also runs farmers’ markets in Prague (www.farmarske-trhy.cz – in Czech only).