St. Lawrence Market is an historic food market in Toronto’s Old Town that has its origins in the early 1800s. You can come to the market to experience the bustle of a traditional fresh-food market, sample everything from fruit to seafood, browse exhibits and antiques and improve your culinary skills. The market has three buildings to explore and a huge range of wares and cooking classes. It’s no wonder that in 2012 National Geographic voted the market the world’s best food market.
The North Market building is famous for its Farmers Market, which first took place on this site in 1803. Traders from Southern Ontario come to sell fruit and vegetables, baked goods, sausages and cheeses, among other local produce. Arrive early to get a pick of the best products. Come here on a Sunday and you’ll have the chance to browse the stalls of around 80 antique dealers. Keep an eye out for collector’s items, you can find some real treasures here!
The South Market building hosts around 120 vendors daily, spread over two floors. Find everything from bakeries to seafood stands and vendors selling homemade jams and pickles, as well as Toronto’s famous Peameal Bacon sandwiches. On the upper floor you’ll find the Market Gallery. It is worth visiting for the rotating exhibitions that portray the cultural and social changes of Toronto.
Cooking enthusiasts visiting the market can enjoy a range of culinary classes. These include knife skill workshops and specialized cooking lessons, such as baking cakes and soup preparation. In September, sample Bavarian food and beer at Toronto’s Oktoberfest.
Located in Toronto’s Old Town, St. Lawrence Market is a short walk from major city attractions, including the Distillery District and the Hockey Hall of Fame. There are several pay-and-display parking lots nearby. Buses and streetcars will also leave you close to the market’s entrance.
Opening hours and event dates vary, so check its official website for full details. The website also gives information on visiting St. Lawrence Hall, an architectural landmark and the market’s third building.