Venice - Rialto Market / Mercato di Rialto
I've said it before, but give me a foreign country and a food market and I'm a happy girl. Venice's Rialto Market is smaller in scope and size than Borough Market and La Boqueria, but what it lacks in size it makes up for in charm. For one thing, it's open air, so natural light and fresh air are much easier to come by. The fish market housed under tall columns while the fresh market is shaded by tents, and the view of the Grand Canal and Rialto Bridge is unbeatable!
Rialto is clearly geared towards Venetians shopping for groceries. There are no prepared food stalls (though Pronto Pesce and plenty of restaurants are just around the corner,) just lots and lots of fish, fruit, and vegetables. It's located right off the Grand Canal in an easy to find (for Venice) location. Take vaporetto #2 down the Grand Canal and disembark at the Rialto stop, cross the big white bridge and follow the masses. Take some time to browse the market, there are so many opportunities for great photographs. If you're feeling peckish there are plenty of options around the market for a snack. Pick up some fresh fruit from one of the stalls or venture out of the market to one of the bakeries around the corner.
Walking from the bridge, the fresh market comes first. Wide, canopied stalls are filled with seasonal fruit and veg. I was lucky enough to visit in the spring when purple tinged artichokes and asparagus were abundant. Wind through the stalls to reach the fish market, a big, open stone structure that's easy to hose down at the end of the day.
The produce was so beautiful. It made me wish I had rented an apartment and could cook my own food. And I'm still kicking myself for not picking up some of the beans pictured above.
Another Rialto Market plus, dreamy, tattooed fish mongers. Mmm, hmm. I would try any freaky seafood he recommended.
On Venice, just about everything, from tourists to trash, enters and leaves the island by boat. Imagine needing a new refrigerator, the only way to get it delivered is through the canals and up into centuries old buildings. Talk about logistics.