Looking to get to know the places you visit in Florida in a fresh and flavorful way? Check out a local farmers market. These colorful markets have free admission – and some feature live entertainment – and they also offer visitors opportunities to meet growers, crafters, and merchants, as well as area residents who are out shopping and browsing too. Additionally, the farmers markets tempt with local delights such as flowers, fruits and vegetables, and perhaps honey, cheeses, baked goods, arts and crafts and other products. Why not enjoy browsing in the fresh air and picking up some flowers to decorate your hotel room, or a handcrafted souvenir of your travels, or some items for a picnic basket?
Here are some farmers markets to check out at popular Florida destinations:
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Where: The Daytona Beach Downtown Farmers Market takes place across the river from Beach Street at the City Island Parking Lot.
When: Every Saturday from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Highlights: Waterfront setting on the Halifax River, organic fruits and vegetables –purple cauliflower, anyone? – as well as orchids and seafood.
Where: Las Olas Boulevard and Southeast 12 Street in the parking lot of The Chemist Drug Store (parking is on the street in front of the market).
When: Every Saturday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Highlights: Produce, plants, olive oils, locally grown orchids, fresh-baked goods, gluten-free products, soy candles, artisan soaps, aromatherapy products, gem stone jewelry and more. Pet friendly.
Where: The River District Farmers Market takes place at 2000 West First Street at the Centennial Park parking lot under the U.S. 41 Caloosahatchee Bridge in the downtown Ft. Myers River District.
When: Every Thursday year-round from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Highlights: Produce, plants and flowers, local honey, nuts, cheeses and seafood.
Where: The Jacksonville Farmers Market is held at 1810 West Beaver Street (U.S. 90), approximately one mile west of Jacksonville’s downtown.
When: Open every day from pre-dawn to dusk.
Highlights: Since 1938 the Jacksonville Farmers Market has been featuring fresh produce. More than 200 farmers offer their fruits and vegetables and assorted products.
Where: The Lake Worth Farmers Market is held at the northeast corner of Lake Avenue and A1A.
When: Every Saturday from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Highlights: Organic produce, plants including orchids, bromeliads and herbs, gourmet foods, and arts and crafts.
Where: The Downtown Orlando Farmers Market is held at Lake Eola Park, 195 North Rosalind Avenue.
When: Every Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Highlights: Dog-friendly. Beer and Wine Garden from noon to 4 p.m. every Sunday.
Where: The Old City Farmers Market takes place at the St. Augustine Amphitheatre on A1A South.
When: Every Saturday from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Highlights: Live entertainment, crafts, and produce from area organic farms.
Where: In the Siesta Key Village, 5124 Ocean Boulevard.
When: Every Sunday from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Highlights: Live entertainment, herbs, organic produce and A Taste of the Village with area restaurants serving farm fresh items from their menus.
Where: The Vero Beach Farmers Market Oceanside is held across from Humiston Park in the parking lot north of 2901 Ocean Drive.
When: Weekly every Saturday from 8 a.m. to noon.
Highlights: Local produce, seafood, honey, healthy drinks, spices, homemade dog biscuits and more. Pet friendly, and local musicians entertain.