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In October, we drove down to the Riviera del Fiori, on the Ligurian coast, or more specific: to Sanremo.

When I think of Sanremo, James-Bond-esque images float my mind – supercars on remote, winding roads, people in tuxedos and evening dresses, playing roulette in the casino, a little Montecarlo flair, s’il vous plaît, and in a nutshell, Sanremo delivers, if you are into that kind of thing.

Funny enough, though, intermingled with all the bling-bling and glamour, there are huge stretches of glasshouses, where the famous flowers of the Riviera are grown, and when you come down from Col de Tende, you drive through olive oil land, and even more astonishing, the Riviera is a place where lots of awesome fruit and vegetables are grown, although it looks less than rural.

In Sanremo, there is a famous flower market (which we didn’t visit), and every morning the market at Mercato Annonario is held from 6 a.m. to 1.30 p.m.. While the market hall does feature regular booths of vendors, there are also local farmers selling their produce, and everyone is proud to sell regional or at least Italian goods, from fruit and vegetables to mushrooms and olive oil.

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Have a look:

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Entering the market hall, you can find a few stalls with Kyrillic price tags, giving credit to the fact that these days, many wealthy Russians populate the city. I was glad to see that in spite of expensive boutiques popping up in the pedestrian areas, there is still a lot of the old food culture in town – from tiny pasticcerias to a cheesemonger or a herboristeria.

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My only complaint: I want a market like this at home 😉 and I couldn’t do all the shopping I would have loved to (because I still had three days of road trip ahead of me). But I did grab an bunch of lovely Sicilian organic lemons on the way out.

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Mercato Annonario
Piazza Eroi Sanremesi
Mo-Fr 06:00 – 13:30
Sa 06:00 – 13:30, 16:00-19:30