The Valley Market
The Valley Market is the best market I’ve visited this year. Next to the beaches this must be Port Elizabeth’s top tourist attraction – it has coffee, music, artisanal chocolates and desserts, fresh produce and a kids play corner.
Even though it was a beautiful PE day and the beach was begging me to come swim the Valley Market was a fantastic outing and I’m so glad I went, so so glad.
Where is the Valley Market
The Valley Market is in the Old Tramways Building (for the PE born and raised – it’s where the ice rink used to be). It’s on Valley Road, Baakens Valley.
The market is bang on the corner of Valley Road and what Apple Maps calls Mary’s Street – you can’t miss it. Below is a map with the pin pointing to where the Valley Market is.
How to get to the Valley Market and Parking
There is a bit of on-street parking and some parking behind the building but most of the parking is under the freeway. The best way to access the parking is aiming for the N2 and then taking the City off ramp, as soon as you take the offramp you will see a sign pointing you left – into the parking. There is a map on Facebook which indicates where the parking is, here is a quick link to the map.
The market runs on the 1st Saturday of the month at 9am and is on until 2pm. You will want to get to the market early because it feels like most of PE will head there on the weekend so parking gets full quickly and some of the more popular stalls sell out (Tangleberry has the most incredible desserts – little works of art but they get nabbed quickly).
It’ll cost you R10 to get into the market and you’ll get a stamp to prove that you paid your entrance fee. The entrance fee goes to charity which is an added bonus of visiting the market.
Valley Market Features
As soon as I entered the market I got such a great vibe. Every stall holder is smiling and happy to answer a thousand questions (even though they have probably answered the same questions over and over again). And it’s not that fake-pretend-to-be-happy, it’s genuinely friendly people who are loving being there. I suppose that is just typical Port Elizabeth for you and the reason it’s called the Friendly City.
When I visited during December there was live music. A guy by the name of Charlie Finch was entertaining the attendees and he was incredible. Incredible.
The stalls I was able to buy from (based on the cash I had):
- Pikkiekids Kids’ Clothing (the reason I actually found out about the market)
- Milkwood fresh produce
- KuduLand Meats
- TangleBerry deserts
- St Paletas artisanal lollies.
While those were the ones I bought from I spent time ogling:
- Chocolat PE
- Olives and cheese
- Beautiful necklaces from Alive Hand crafted jewellery
- Bath salts and body rubs
- The amazing food from Frederick and Son
- Gorgeous bouquets of flowers
- Humble Bee Honey
- Tastebud Rostis who make filled rosties
- Westees Bakery
- The Fudge Master
- Isitembiso earrings (the proceeds from each pair of earrings go to Isitembiso home for abandoned and orphaned babies)
- Fresh fusion juices
- Masterton Coffee
- The Mustard Deli
Valley Market Facilities
There are bathrooms inside the building both upstairs and downstairs (near the stage).
The market is all flat so you can take a pram around. I saw quite a few families with little babies and prams. There is plenty of seating by way of long tressel tables with seats in one area and two other sections with upturned crates made into tables and chairs. As the market is indoors you don’t have to worry about the market being weather dependent.
Valley Market with kids
If you’re wanting to get shopping done but you’ve got kids in tow do not fear. There is a kids play area upstairs. I gather you have to pay per child but there are child minders and a few stations set up with different activities for kids including sand art (R10 for sand-art alone is a bargain), drawing and colouring, puzzles and painting.
Although some of the stalls do take cards I would advise taking money with you. There is a connectivity overload so it takes forever to get the payment through.
For more information and to stay up to date on when the market is on you can check out the Valley Market Facebook Page