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Réunion: the Saint-Paul market

On the west coast of the island of Réunion, the town of Saint-Paul is the weekly setting for one of the island’s most beautiful markets.

From Friday morning to Saturday morning, dozens of stalls are set up on the seafront esplanade, creating a multi-coloured spectacle.

Stallholders selling vegetables and exotic fruits stand side-by-side with smallholders selling peppers, traders selling vanilla grown on Réunion, as well as beekeepers enticing customers with their “péi” honey.

Continue exploring through the section of the market reserved for arts and crafts, where you will be delighted to find items such as sarongs, t-shirts, basketwork and hats on sale.

Afterwards, it’s time to devote yourself to more practical pursuits, which means discovering local “péi” cuisine! If you prefer to eat on the hoof, you can choose from a whole array of Creole specialities which you can buy at the market and take away, such as “pains bouchons gratinés” (a typical Réunion sandwich), samosas, “gâteaux patates” (sweet potato cakes) and punnets of Victoria pineapple.

For a typical lunchtime experience, the small restaurants dotted around the market serve a range of typical dishes such as chicken curry and “saucisse rougail”.

Open all day on Friday (6am to 5.30pm) and Saturday morning (6am to noon). Boulevard du Front de Mer, 97460 Saint-Paul.