Saint-Chinian is most of the days a charming, quiet little village. Except for Thursday and Sunday mornings when the lively local market is held. And that is truly a feast for all of your senses. The market attracts people from far and near, both in summer and in winter. I completely understand: this is the place to buy fresh products and unique merchandise. There is something for everyone. And for those who want to escape the hustle and bustle, there are plenty of terraces to sit down and relax.
The good thing about the market in Saint-Chinian is that it is set out in the shade of the trees. So you can stroll around the market without getting sunburned straight away. One-half of the market mainly sells food products. The choice is huge, and therefore can be quite difficult. Are you getting some of the great cheeses, fresh oysters, tasteful olives, all kinds of tapenades, beautiful fruits and vegetables, locally made empanada’s, sweet nougat, or …? It’s all there. On top of the deliciously roasted chickens and wonderful paella that is. Tip: don’t go to this market on an empty stomach!
Hats and soaps
In addition to the food market, there is also a big section where you can buy all kinds of stuff, obviously all very useful. From the typical hats you definitely need in the sunny South, to floaty dresses, fragrant soaps, practical peshtemals (a traditional Arabic towel called foutas here), colourful bags and much more. Enough to keep you busy for a while.
Taking a break
After all that strolling and shopping, it is a pleasure to relax on the terrace of Café du Balcon ‘Chez Polak’. Have a refreshing drink and maybe even a bite to eat. The menu is not big, but you can have some fries, calamari, shrimp, steak or a tasty cheese or charcuterie board to satisfy the biggest appetite.