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BT’s best: We name Queensland’s top 10 markets

Jan Powers Markets have kicked off the year as biggest farmers’ markets in Brisbane. Photo: SuppliedEach week, Brisbane Times is on a mission to find the best of pretty much everything in Queensland, and with a little bit of help from our Facebook audience, we’ll be compiling a Top 10. 
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Not everyone will agree. We know that, so stand up for your favourite during the discussion. This week, we’re off to market – on the Sunshine Coast, in Cairns, Toowoomba, the Gold Coast and Brisbane.

From fresh produce, to arts and vintage clothing, there are no shortage of markets around the state. Here are 10 of the best.

1. Eumundi Markets Open Saturdays 7am to 2pm and Wednesdays 8am to 1.30pm

For decades the Eumundi Markets have continued to be a Queensland favourite, attracting customers from far and wide with their vibrant atmosphere, mouth-watering street food, diverse array of produce and inspired artworks and homewares.

Add in the town’s friendly and nostalgic ambience and some beautiful beaches just a stone’s throw away, the Eumundi Markets make an ideal weekend activity.

2.Carseldine Markets

Open Saturdays from 6am to 12pm

A welcome addition to the north side, the Carseldine Markets are growing to be the largest farmers market in the area, with more than 180 stalls ranging from fresh produce to a variety of street food to treatments and homeware products.

Open every Saturday from 6am to noon, vendors from as far away as Redcliffe and the Sunshine Coast present fresh, locally made yoghurt smoothies and hand-crafted trinkets for customers to treat themselves to.

3. Toowoomba PCYC Markets Open Sundays from 7am to 12.30pm.

For around 25 years, the Toowoomba PCYC Markets have been a staple in the area as well as a prime example of grassroots markets, with proceeds going towards the PCYC and the wider community.

Selling goods as varied as crafts, bric-a-brac, store-type new items and their famous fruit and vegies, these markets pride themselves on their basic, ‘what you see is what you get’ approach, with low prices and cheap rates for stallholders.

4. Brisbane MarketPlace Rocklea

Open Saturdays and Sundays from 6am to 12pm.

Heralding itself as Brisbane’s premier public market facility, the Brisbane MarketPlace in Rocklea is so diverse it has two styles of market to choose from over the weekend; Saturday Fresh Markets and Sunday Discovery Markets.

Saturday Fresh Markets are for the foodies and nature lovers, with a huge range of plants, fresh produce and delectable cuisines, while Sunday Discovery Markets cater to those looking for a bargain on collectables, home renovation products, books, CD’s, DVD’s and more.

5. The Noosa Farmers’ Market Open Sundays from 7am to 12pm.

“From humble beginnings in 2001 serving just a few hundred customers, The Noosa Farmers’ Market has excelled in attracting around 6000 customers from Australia and overseas, and was voted “#1 market in Australia” on TripAdvisor in 2013.

These markets provide fresh, local produce to a range of customers, with nut milk for vegans, freshly squeezed lime drinks for Paleo people, and for meat lovers, one regular farmer kills a cow every week just for this market – can’t get much fresher than that!

6. Jan Powers Farmers Markets Opening times: Powerhouse – Saturdays 6am to 12pm (was previously every second Saturday, but moving to every Saturday from February); Queen Street – Wednesdays 10am to 6pm; Manly – every third Saturday every month, 6am to 12pm; Mitchelton – every first Sunday every month, 6am to 12pm

Kicking off the year as the biggest farmer’s market in Brisbane, Jan Powers Farmers Markets offers a huge variety of stores and produce across four locations, including New Farm, Queen Street, Manly Harbour and Mitchelton.

Along with diversity of location comes diversity of fresh produce for these markets, with a range of seafood, oils, breads, meats, pasta, cakes and spices to set your taste buds tingling.

7. The Gap Farmers’ Market Open the second and fourth Sunday every month – next scheduled for January 25.

The Gap Farmers’ Market is a not-for-profit market that began June last year and has already become one of the most successful farmers’ markets in the state thanks to Moggill Market operators Erica and John Parker’s input.

Boasting 80-90 stalls and often attracting roughly 3000 visitors, the Gap Farmers’ Market has a make it or grow it policy upheld by local farmers and craftspeople, and fosters community spirit by turning market proceeds back over to local schools and community initiatives.

8. The Handmade Expo

Opening times: Ipswich – next scheduled for Saturday, February 21, 8am to 2pm; Morayfield – next scheduled for Sunday, March 1, 9am to 2pm; Rockhampton – next scheduled for Saturday, February 14, 9am to 2pm; Bundaberg – Saturday, February 22, 9am to 2pm; Rockingham – Sunday, February 8, 9am to 2pm; Forest Hill – no scheduled dates.

Priding themselves on ‘making, baking and growing’, The Handmade Expo is a chain of markets which began at the Ipswich Showgrounds in 2008 before expanding out into a 90 to 150 stall monthly event for homemade goods makers.

Take your pick of expo locations from Ipswich, Morayfield, Rockhampton, Bundaberg, Perth (Rockingham) and Forest Hill, and explore funky fabrics, beautiful baby goods, and cute crochets.

9. The Collective Markets South Bank

Open Fridays 5pm to 9pm, Saturdays 10am to 9pm and Sundays 9am to 4pm.

Bribanites all over have soaked up the warm, vibrant atmosphere of The Collective Markets in Stanley Street Plaza for a couple of years now, taking in inspired works of art, craft, fashion and photography from local stallholders.

What really makes these markets a memorable activity is the lively South Bank location, with many a cafe or bar to relax in and observe fellow shoppers enjoy some handmade handicrafts.

10. Carrara Markets

Open Saturdays and Sundays from 7am to 4pm.

Carrara Markets is one of the older venues on the circuit, open for more than 20 years. It’s also one of the largest, with more than 400 stalls offering a wide range of products.

There’s plenty of imported fashion and handicraft, but a nice mix of locally-produced goods as well, including paintings and timber art for around the home. Take your walking shoes and bring the family.

Brunswick Street Markets – watch this space!

The Fortitude Valley Markets have been operating in Brisbane for 22 years, but for 2015 are coming back revamped, with a greater focus on designer fashion for young people.

With its new layout set up along Brunswick St and Chinatown Malls, the Valley Markets will be open from 9am to 4pm Saturday and 9am to 3pm Sunday, with plans for a new night time market in the works for 2015.

Eat Street Markets

Where: Macarthur Avenue, Hamilton

When: Friday (4pm – 10pm) and Saturday (4pm – 10pm)

Kuranda Original Rainforest Markets

Where: 7/13 Therwine Street, Kuranda.

When: Every day from 9.30am to 3pm.

Nundah Fresh Farmers’ MarketThis story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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