It’s officially the weekend! You’ve just finished a tough week at work, the sun is bright as ever, and you’re ready to turn up with some turnips. Did we mention it’s the weekend? So, put on those walking shoes, grab your reusable bag, and drive on down to one of the liveliest farmers markets in San Diego county.
Which one should you choose? Glad you asked—lettuce recommend this list of fun and friendly San Diego farmers markets to make your weekend unbeetable. Use this list as your own personal San Diego tour of the various farmers markets, as we give you all of our insider tips.
Farmers Markets Available on Saturday…
Little Italy Mercato Farmers Market
Every Saturday from 8 am to 2 pm, you can explore downtown San Diego’s largest market. Check out over 200 vendor booths selling fish, flowers, meat, fresh fruits and vegetables, local artisan food, and much more! If you are in more of a dine-in mood, take your pick from hot paninis to fresh uni and enjoy your meal in front of a live band.
Located at West Cedar Street from Kettner to Front Street, the Little Italy Mercato is a must-see for any farmers market fanatic.
- What We Love: Visit Thai Chef Saranya’s booth for one of the most delicious and affordable snacks at the market. Their delectable coconut pancakes are priced at 25 cents a pop and are prepared right in front of you. Infused with coconut milk and coconut syrup, these fresh treats will be hard to resist the second or third… or the twentieth time.
Rancho Penasquitos Farmers Market
For those interested in a more intimate farmers market experience, hop on over to the Rancho Penasquitos Farmers Market located at 9400 Fairgrove Lane and Salmon River Road. Set up under the bright San Diego sun every Saturday from 9 am to 1:30 pm, this cozy market has a ton of dining tables where you can bring a significant other for a fun daytime date idea or catch up with friends over baba hummus and bright veggies.
- What We Love: Because this market is smaller, parking is easy and live music adds to its relaxed atmosphere. Enjoy sampling wild honey or vegetarian tamales in the calm environment of this tiny but quaint farmers market.
Pacific Beach Certified Farmers Market
Looking for a beach town farmers market? Look no further than Pacific Beach Farmers Market, where the surf meets turf every Saturday from 8 am to noon. This market is smaller than most, but still hosts a fine selection of fresh flowers, fruits, and vegetables, including mouth-watering watermelon, and plump strawberries.
Found on 4150 Mission Blvd between Reed and Pacific Beach Blvd just one street away from the boardwalk. This farmers market has an added bonus of being near one of the best beaches in San Diego. Grab some fresh fruits and take a walk over to the beach for a stroll on the sand.
- What We Love: The calm atmosphere of this smaller market allows for some great conversations with the friendly vendors. If you say all the right things, you might even score an extra sample or two. Plus, bonus points for ample parking in the area.
Farmers Markets Available on Sunday…
Hillcrest Farmers Market
If you’re anything like Goldilocks, you’ll be interested in a farmers market that is not too big and not too small. Goldilocks, meet your bear: Hillcrest Farmers Market, a farmers market that’s juuust right. The rich history of Hillcrest has helped contribute to the lively environment at this farmers market.
Located at 3960 Normal Street, this farmers market boasts a lovely selection of vendors, ranging from local farmers selling organic produce to artisans sharing their talents. Every Sunday from 9 am to 2 pm, you can experience the tastes of international cuisine while enjoying head-bouncing, hip-bumping live performances.
- What We Love: To experience new cuisine, stop by the Flavors of East Africa stand to try some barbecue jerk chicken. Let the smoke from their grill guide your nose to a vibrant booth with dancing cooks and live music that will make you want to dance too.
La Jolla Open Aire Farmers Market
The La Jolla Open Aire Farmers Market is one of the largest farmers markets in San Diego CA. Founded by a local mom, this market sells great products for a cause—all of its proceeds go to La Jolla Elementary school.
The market entrance is located at 7335 Girard Avenue and runs Sundays from 9 am to 1 pm. This market hosts over 150 local vendors serving international food, handcrafted gifts, and organic produce.
- What We Love: Here, you can bring your little ones for Family Fun Days to participate in kid-friendly activities.
Leucadia Farmers Market
Everyone that goes to the Leucadia Farmers Market leaves with a special warmth in their hearts. This family-friendly market takes place on 185 Union Street on Sundays from 10 am to 2 pm and features more than 75 local vendors, food trucks, and local artisans sharing their creations.
Here, you can indulge in your guilty pleasure foods because all the proceeds from this market go to the Paul Ecke Central School. You can’t be guilty if your purchases are helping kids… more kettle corn, please!
- What We Love: If you come on a bike, you get “Bicycle Bucks,” worth $1 off any purchase! Happy stomach, happy wallet.
North San Diego Certified Farmers Market
For the true farm experience, check out the North San Diego Farmers Market at the Sikes Adobe Historic Farmstead. Held on Sundays from 10:30 am to 3:30 pm on 12655 Sunset Drive, this market is set in a truly rustic environment.
- What We Love: If you’re stopping by in January and February, try some of their fresh kumquats. Missed your chance? No worries; in November and December, you can munch on some delicious persimmons. If you miss those options, fear not, for their fresh cauliflower and avocados are available almost year-round!
Rancho Santa Fe Certified Farmers Market
We love this farmers market because it loves its customers and its vendors. Not only do they showcase a featured vendor every week, but they also give away free mini pumpkins to kids to celebrate the spooky season.
Stop by 16079 San Dieguito Road from 9:30 am to 2 pm on Sundays to feel the love for yourself.
- What We Love: Brand-new umbrellas, bistro tables, and café chairs provide plenty of seating for all. What’s more, furry friends are welcome, so the entire household can enjoy the local bands while munching on some homemade Italian cookies.
Closing Thoughts, Fresh from the Farm
Orange you glad you live in a city as vibrant and exciting as San Diego? A place with so many amazing farmers markets to choose from any weekend. It almost makes you wonder… Why are there so many amazing farmers markets?
Answer, daily double, San Diego has over 6,500 farms in the local area. You read that right. And it’s because of the abundance of farms that makes farmers markets so accessible. Ditch the grocery stores. With the number of farmers markets that sell fresh food, you can opt for a fun and healthy trip to one of these places! So come, pack your pantry with fresh food, have a great time with loved ones, and eat tasty meals in a community atmosphere with live music to boot. Your favorite San Diego, CA farmers markets are just a quick drive away.
SD Farm Bureau. Farmers Markets. https://www.sdfarmbureau.org/farmers-market/
UCCE. San Diego County Small Farms. https://ucanr.edu/sites/sdsmallfarms/0