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  • Writer's pictureChetan Prabhu

Great Fresh Markets in Bali

Visit these great fresh markets in Bali and you can catch insightful glimpses into an episode in the daily local life of the Balinese. Besides letting you experience unique traditional vibes with hard bargaining and transactions underway, these early-morning markets are tours in themselves, where you can explore, discover and learn about anything from fresh tropical fruits that you might have never seen (or tasted) before, to interesting knick-knacks and utensils.

In this day and age, traditional fresh markets in Bali still play an important role in the daily lives of the locals. They are where most rural community members interact at the start of each day, source basic daily necessities for cooking and housekeeping, as well as affordable clothing and, for most of the farmers and traditional vendors themselves, it is the main source of income. For visitors, it’s simply an attack on the senses. Most popular Balinese cooking classes include a visit to one as an eye-opening prefaces to their programs. Here’s a selection of the most popular local markets in Bali.

1) Candi Kuning Market

This is perhaps Bali’s most popular fruit and flower market, which resides in the highland area of Bedugul, central Bali. The Candi Kuning Market, or simply ‘Pasar Bedugul’, is a regular stopover on tours to the area, featuring the prime harvests of the local farming communities of Bedugul, ranging from colourful flowers and a wide range of tropical fruits such as mangosteen, bananas, tamarillos, tangerines and, most importantly, strawberries - one of the main products of the region. You can also find some souvenir shops here selling kitsch arts and crafts.

Opening Hours: 08:00-20:00

Location: Jalan Kebun Raya Bedugul, Candi Kuning, Bedugul, Tabanan

2) Pancasari Market

The second traditional farmer’s market in the highland Bedugul region is the noticeably less touristy Pancasari Market, located further up from the recreational lakeside spot of Beratan and just across from the Bali Handara Kosaido Country Club. Here you can explore a truly local open marketplace scene, with various kinds of fresh vegetables and fruits harvested from the nearby farms and plantations of the Pancasari community. The market is locally referred to as Pasar Wisata Jabe Puri Gede Pancasari. You can oftentimes strike a better bargain here on the many tropical fruits, which range from mangosteen and mangoes, to the abundant local pride produce of strawberries.

Opening Hours: 00:00 – 24:00

Location: Jalan Raya Bedugul, Pancasari, Sukasada, Buleleng, North Bali

3) Kedonganan Fish Market

As one of the main local sources of fresh seafood in Bali, Kedonganan Fish Market offers a unique sightseeing opportunity near Jimbaran. The market is just a short drive south from the Ngurah Rai International Airport in Tuban, and nearby the so called Kedonganan seafood cluster of cafés and restaurants that line the bay. Often inaccurately referred to as the ‘Jimbaran Fish Market’, this seaside marketplace is where fishing boats land daily and haul off their fresh catches. Here, you’ll be able to witness fishermen unload their nets full of big and small fruits of the sea and weigh their catches for auction, retail and wholesale. There’s also a morning market selling local groceries nearby.

Opening Hours: 06:00 – 18:00

Location: Jalan Pantai Kedonganan, Kedonganan

4) Taman Sari Market

Locally referred to as Pasar Taman Sari, this is the closest fresh market to those staying around the Seminyak area. The market is right on the eastern corner before entering Seminyak’s Jalan Petitenget. In the mornings, the market is a main source of fresh fruits and vegetables for Seminyak and Kerobokan locals, as well as a cheap source for some of the luxury villas in the area. Uniquely, by night, the market turns into a place for culinary adventures, with street food stalls and the usual Indonesian-style ‘meals on wheels’ showing up, ranging from ‘bakso’ meatball soups, grilled chicken satays and deep-fried banana fritters to vendors selling knock-off DVDs and cheap toys.

Location: Jalan Tangkuban Parahu No.2, Kerobokan

5) Badung Market

This central landmark in Denpasar is located on the eastern bank of the namesake Badung River, with the Kumbasari Art Market on the other side. Badung Market is known as the biggest traditional market on the island, and features a myriad of vendors selling a huge variety of fresh fruits, as well as seafood, kitchen utensils, household tools, Balinese Hindu ritual items, jewellery, and daily necessities of all sorts. Being a main meeting point for farmers, consumers and retailers, the negotiable prices here are usually a whole lot cheaper than in most other markets, and hard bargaining is a must. You can witness the busy buying and selling scenes around the perimeter, as the market’s main building is currently being renovated following a March 2016 fire.

Location: Jalan Sulawesi No. 1, Dangin Puri Kangin, Denpasar

6) Jimbaran Market

The Jimbaran village market - otherwise known as Pasar Desa Adat Jimbaran - is a morning and fresh market that is located right on Jalan Uluwatu and in the center of Jimbaran. The market is where most Jimbaran locals source their daily groceries and necessities. It is usually crowded in the mornings, which offers a unique sight with mild traffic chaos as everyone tries to get through or find a parking space. Nevertheless, a walk through the market gives you a glimpse into the fresh variety, as well as a lot of photo opportunities. Together with the fish market of Kedonganan nearby, this market is frequently included in the itineraries of popular cooking classes such as Bumbu Bali.

Opening Hours: 06:00 – 24:00

Location: Jalan Raya Uluwatu, Jimbaran

7) Ubud Traditional Market

At the same location known as the highly popular art market in the center of Ubud town, you can witness a fresh morning market scene where local daily goods are featured besides the regular art shops and stalls. Any open spaces are occupied by vendors who offer vegetables, fruits, flower offerings and more. The best time to observe this is before sunrise, when local Ubud villagers go about their early morning shopping. Afterwards, the scene transforms as the mainstay stalls open shop and open spaces shift to feature woodcarvings and paintings. Check out the peculiar shrine near the entrance, overflowing with flower offerings placed by shop owners who ask for a productive business day.

Opening Hours: 05:00 – 07:00

Location: Jalan Raya Ubud, Ubud

8) Semarapura Market

Locally referred to as Pasar Klungkung (after the regency) and Pasar Semarapura (after the capital) interchangeably, this market is located right across from the major landmark of Klungkung: the Kertagosa ‘hall of justice’. The bustling scene of local shoppers sourcing their daily cooking ingredients at the different stalls is the common morning sight while, after 07:00, the many different shops open to reveal everything from batiks, locally-made jewellery, flowers and Balinese Hindu ceremonial items such as ornate bowls and wooden fruit offering stands. The Semarapura Market is considered the largest traditional market in the eastern Bali region, with the main building comprising three floors.

Opening Hours: 06:00 – 24:00

Location: Jalan Puputan No.7, Semarapura Kangin, Klungkung

9) Kuta Market

Not to be mistaken for the Kuta Art Market near the beach on Jalan Kartika Plaza, this market is located right on the urban corner of Jalan Raya Kuta and offers a more local scene. It is usually crowded in the early mornings and minor traffic congestion is a regular sight at this end of the one-way street. While most of the mainstay shops facing the street side remain closed before 08:00, the scene with vendors inside the main two-story building is pretty lively long before sunrise and you can see daily fresh goods, from fruits and vegetables to clothing and utensils, all offered at bargain prices. Wait a little longer, until noon, and you have a souvenir shopping scene akin to the art market here.

Opening Hours: 06:00-24:00

Location: Jalan Raya Kuta, Kuta

10) Sindu Market

Best known among visitors to Sanur as a destination night market, the Sindu Market is actually open before sunrise as a lively traditional fresh market, where local Sanur residents source their cooking stuff, from fresh fish, meats and poultry to fruits and vegetables. Inside the market is a large sheltered warehouse-like space with 150 different tiled stands. Each is numbered in a well-planned and modern layout, but the traditional aspect of the market remains hard bargaining.

Opening Hours: 07:00 - 23:00

Location: Jalan Danau Tamblingan, Sanur, Bali

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