Toronto’s Farmer’s Markets: A Bit of Country in the Big City

Sunny summer days always remind me of the drives up to the cottage or day trips to wine country. Of course, a road trip would not be complete without stopping off at one of the fresh fruit and veggie stands at the side of the road for a good dose of Ontario goodness. While many urbanites migrate to the north around this time of the year for pursuit of all that is Ontario summer, for those who stay in the city there is still plenty of freshness captured at Toronto’s many farmer’s markets.

Whether you’re on the hunt for the perfectly ripe tomato, freshly baked pie or crafty home decor, it can be found in the city no matter the neighbourhood. If you haven’t taken the time to explore one of these markets, you should definitely put it on your To-Do list this summer. Below are just a few of my favourites farmer’s markets in Toronto.

ST. LAWRENCE MARKET

WHEN: Open every Saturday from 5 am – 3pm (South Market open Tuesday through Saturday)

WHERE: 92-95 Front Street East

WHY: It’s the largest and longest -standing market in Toronto, visited by tourists from around the world and named this year’s National Geographic’s #1 food market in the world.

TRINITY BELLWOODS FARMER’S MARKET

WHEN: Open every Tuesday from 3pm – 7pm (until October 30)

WHERE: Northwest corner of Trinity Bellwoods Park, Dundas Street West and Shaw Street

WHY: If you ever visited Trinity Bellwoods park you probably picked up on the cool, urban vibe. It’s a great place to take your family on a warm and sunny afternoon. The market offers fresh local goods and is well organized with their own website to keep you in the loop on the latest.

LIBERTY VILLAGE MARKET

WHEN: Open every Sunday from 9am – 2pm (starting June 3)

WHERE: Liberty Village, East Liberty Street between Atlantic Ave. and Hanna Ave.

WHY: It is a small market offering fresh, local and organic produce. Part of a five-piece network of Certified Local farmer’s markets by MyMarket, it’s located in the quickly expanding King West neighbourhood allowing the urban crowd to access farm goods without leaving the downtown bubble.

EVERGREEN BRICKWORKS

WHEN: Open every Saturday from 8am – 1pm (until November 3)

WHERE: 550 Bayview Ave., Rosedale Valley

WHY: The market features 65 to 85 local Ontario farmers, producers and artisans offering organic and GMO-free products within the historic and newly-revived Don Valley brick factory.

ARTSCAPE WYCHWOOD BARNS FARMER’S MARKET

WHEN: Open every Saturday from 8am – 12pm (all year)

WHERE: Barn #4, 601 Christie St., St. Clair West

WHY: Described as a ‘community food centre’, this market was named by Now Magazine as one of the best in the city.

RIVERDALE FARM FARMER’S MARKET

WHEN: Open every Tuesday from 3pm – 7pm (starting May 22)

WHERE: 201 Winchester St., Cabbagetown

WHY: This is a great place to visit with your family, pick up fresh produce and flowers, and explore Riverdale Farm and what it has to offer.

NATHAN PHILLIPS SQUARE

WHEN: Open every Wednesday from June 6 – October 24

WHERE: 100 Queen Street West, City Hall

WHY: If you work in the downtown core, this is a great place to visit on your lunch hour, pick up fresh produce and enjoy live noon-hour concerts of Canadian music. This city market makes great use of City Hall’s front door, with a variety of fresh food vendors.

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