Farmers Market, more than a tourist attraction in Puerto Vallarta and Riviera Nayarit
December is one of the most anticipated months in this region of the Mexican Pacific, not only because of the Christmas holidays but also because the weather is perfect and there are many activities to do. Among this range of options, there is one that I want to highlight, the Farmers Market, known in Mexico as “tianguis artisanal”, which have become an attractive shopping alternative in Puerto Vallarta and Riviera Nayarit during the winter season.
Most of these markets open in the first week of November, right in the middle of fall and in time to welcome the first wave of tourists and seasonal residents known as “snowbirds” from the United States and Canada.
The Farmers Market mixes the style of the Mexican tianguis with the North American farmers markets and are a good option to buy artisan foods, fruits and vegetables harvested from family gardens, Mexican and foreign food, handmade clothing, jewelry, art and even enjoy live music, all in a very relaxed and safe environment.
Something that makes these markets special is that they are only open six months a year, which is why they are highly anticipated, especially by the community of permanent residents, in addition to the fact that you can purchase quality items, buying directly from the producers.
The tradition of buying and selling at regularly established temporary markets is a strong feature of much of Mexican culture. The Aztec and Mayan civilizations had their markets, with cocoa as an exchange currency as it was a very valuable food in the pre-Hispanic era; after the Spanish conquest the Europeans kept this tradition almost intact.
In the United States, the first farmers’ market dates back to 1634 in Boston, Massachusetts and this way of offering and obtaining products became so popular that very soon other communities in different states adopted it and began to open their own local and regional markets, like the popular Los Angeles Farmers Market, located at 3rd and Fairfax, which opened its doors in July 1934.
Puerto Vallarta, for its part, has one of the oldest markets, the Old Town Farmers Market, a gastronomic-cultural market that is installed every Saturday from November to April in the Parque Lázaro Cárdenas, where an extensive list of artisan products, food from different cultures: Mexican, Indian, Thai, Arabic, etc., as well as farm and artisan products. Its hours are from 9:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
In the case of the Riviera Nayarit, I cannot fail to mention La Cruz Market, founded in 2009 and a pioneer in this tourist corridor. The bustling market contains more than 140 stalls selling agricultural products, food, typical clothing, handicrafts, and much more. It is located within the Marina Riviera Nayarit in the town of Cruz de Huanacaxtle. It is open every Sunday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. in the months of November to April.
These two markets are just one example of the great variety of similar spaces that can be found both in Puerto Vallarta and in the Riviera Nayarit, in locations such as Marina Vallarta; Nuevo Vallarta; Bucerias; Sayulita; San Pancho; Lo de Marcos; Rincón de Guayabitos and Chacala, where they have become a tourist attraction.
However, beyond being an attraction, the Farmers Market are extremely important spaces for the local economy, due to the spillovers left by the thousands of visitors and which directly benefits the region’s producers.
Would you like to know more about the Farmers Market and its location in Puerto Vallarta and Riviera Nayarit? Contact me!