Shopping in Tasmania at Island Markets. Or should this article revolve around food, things to do or Tasmanian people? Island Markets could encompass all that and more, and all wrapped in one package served with free parking.
Shopping in Tasmania: Island Markets Experience
With so many other things to do in Tasmania, shopping could easily be overlooked as an event. As in other capital cities, Tasmanian shopping centres provide the usual opportunities for outlet chains. That’s all good, especially if you come from a small regional centre and need to stock up.
But what if you want a different experience? That’s where markets, like the one we visited at Gormanston Road, Moonah really shine. When you head out market shopping in Tasmania, you can enjoy a special atmosphere with friendly service, find one-off bargains and treasures, buy organic greens and source information about the local area.
Lunch at Island Markets
On the day of my visit, I enjoyed a hearty lunch at Churros Cafe. The place looked like a standard take-away shop in the centre of the shed. The food however, was way better than standard. Apparently the cooks working here have had previous experience at waterfront restaurants in Hobart. So you get upmarket food without the upmarket price tag. Winning! With a Spanish influence, the menu included churros (long doughnuts with dipping chocolate), empanada de pollo (marinated chicken roll) and paella (rice, chicken, pork and seafood). Personally, I found the serves too large to indulge in dessert. The chocolate éclairs were calling though, and would’ve been perfect with the excellent coffee.
Only one small suggestion: take your own fork. Weird I know, but they supplied wooden utensils. A splinter in the tongue is not on my wish list, but it wasn’t enough to spoil the meal. Now back to the shopping.
Shopping in Tasmania: Fresh Market Produce
In Tasmania, retailers usually seem happy to talk about their wares, even if you seem unlikely to part with any cash. The fresh food section at Island Markets included a seafood display with a large aquarium to view the catch. The fish monger brought out a crayfish to give the kids a closer look. Due to the bounty of produce in Tasmania, shopping often involves food tastings.
Island Markets Factory Outlets
We’ve heard the Island Markets site has the propensity to drastically change cafes and stall-holders, so it might pay to check the current situation before heading to Moonah. Factory outlets at Island Markets on-site during our visit, included Classic Linen Manchester and Angus and Robertson Bargain Books. These merchants both had large showrooms flanked by many independent stall-holders selling an eclectic mix. Ranging from bric-a-brac through to garden, jewellery and gift supplies, they all gelled nicely with the artistic, hand-made offerings. There was certainly enough range to warrant a return visit.
Rocky (the market’s owner) told me he had plans to add more to Island Markets, including a working artists’ studio on the premises. For more details including current stall-holders and opening hours, see the Island Markets website.