A Guide to Central Vancouver Island’s Farmers’ Markets

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Known for its moderate climate and impressive arts and culture scene, it is no wonder why Vancouver Island is a hotspot destination throughout the year. If you are considering visiting during the summertime, be on the lookout for all of the wonderful farmers’ markets that can be found.

The central region of Vancouver Island is one particular area where you will find a farm market at every corner. There is just something about the atmosphere that surrounds farmers’ markets, from the smiling faces of passersby and the sight of fellow market-goers carrying bags overflowing with all the fresh items to the overflowing stands bursting with fresh items just waiting to be taken home.

These Markets Make for a Great Day Trip when Visiting!

As anyone who lives on Vancouver Island can attest to, the farmers’ markets are just one of the many great perks of calling this picturesque spot home. They make a great day trip for anyone visiting, and they are a hotspot for finding local and specially made goods right from the Island itself, perfect if you’re looking for souvenirs or want to cook with the freshest ingredients available.

Digging a little deeper, the farmers’ markets in the central region of the Island (think Nanaimo, Cedar, Parksville, Qualicum, and so on) are also a must-see. Because the climate is so temperate in these areas, many farmers’ markets start as early as April and run all the way to October. That being said, the summer months are a perfect time to visit, and you will surely be taken aback with how much you’ll find at one this time of year!

Here is a glimpse at a few worth checking out:

Cedar Farmers’ Market

Located in breathtaking Cedar Yellow Point, this farmer’s market boasts more than 85 vendors and runs all the way to October 26th. You will find everything from treats for your sweet tooth to stunning botanicals, fresh meats, and locally grown veggies. Be sure to drop by the local favorite Crow and Gate English Pub nearby for a snack and thirst-quenching pint. 

Nanaimo Downtown Farmers’ Market

During the summer, this is one of the most happening farmers’ markets on Vancouver Island. Also known as ‘Nanaimo’s Original Market’, you can come and see the wares for yourself on the historic Pioneer Waterfront Plaza on Front Street, right beside the Bastion. You will find everything from artisans to bakers and vendors of local produce, meats, poultry, and more.

Parksville Museum Farmers’ Market

This farmers’ market takes place every Friday during the summer and is a favorite among locals and vacationers alike. Located in the Parksville Museum’s Craig Heritage Park, you can also explore the area’s history while perusing the popular market. 

Qualicum Beach Farmers’ Market 

Another favorite among locals, this picturesque farmers’ market is one of the largest on our list. Operating throughout most of the year, Qualicum Beach’s farmers’ market can be found outdoor on Veterans Way from May until mid-October. From the stunning colors of all the items for sale to the sea of people, you are sure to have an unforgettable experience at this beachside market.

When visiting the region and looking for a way to spend the afternoon, also be sure and check out the Lantzville Farmers’ Market and the Bowen Road Farmers’ Market in Nanaimo. If you have stumbled upon any others during your visit to the Island, we would love to hear about them!

Creative Commons Attribution: Permission is granted to repost this article in its entirety with credit to Amazing Vancouver Island and a clickable link back to this page.

Featured image credit: “Cedar Farmers’ Market” by David Stanley, https://www.flickr.com/photos/davidstanleytravel/9457279697/. License by https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/.

Publisher of Amazing Vancouver Island. Doug grew up in Kamloops and Vancouver. He is also the President of KIAI Angency, an Internet Marketing and Branding agency in Vancouver. He is an avid photographer and you can see his many pix of Vancouver Island on Flickr.

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