Storytime! How and where I found The Hague Market — a.k.a. the biggest open street market in Europe.
When I first moved to the Dutch city of The Hague from my home in Mexico almost seven years ago, I thought I would have to say goodbye to one of God’s most beautiful and green creations: guacamole. 🥑
Thanks to The Hague Market, however, that was not the case.
What is The Hague Market?
Surprisingly, it turned out that I did not have to concede a lot in the exotic fruit department when moving to the Netherlands.
Besides having a couple of really good Mexican restaurants, the lovely political capital of The Netherlands is also home to one of the biggest open markets in Europe: De Haagse Markt.
📍 Location: Herman Costerstraat 2571 PJ.
🛒 Opening days: Monday/Wednesday/Friday/Saturday.
⌚ Hours: 9 AM to 5 PM.
The Hague Market in English (or the “Open Market” as called by the locals) is one of the biggest multicultural markets in Europe.
During one of its four opening days, it has been known to host around 35,000 shoppers! The reasons why so many people visit the market vary. Three of them are fairly obvious when you spend a grey Saturday morning, in this colourful corner of The Hague.
What’s there to buy?
Exotic fruits and vegetables, fresh fish, and freshly made stroopwafels are just some of the wonderful things you can add to your grocery bag at The Hague Market.
And I mean, if for some strange reason the “freshly made stroopwafels” part didn’t do it for you… sorry, then I don’t know what will. 😜
READ MORE | The 18 best markets in Amsterdam: ultimate guide
Fresh fruit and veggies
Seriously though, the market has a wide variety of exotic fruits, vegetables and snacks that many people find attractive. It’s one of the few places in The Hague where I can find fresh, ripe, and cheap (!) avocados — we’re talking €1 per kilo, here. 🙌
So, you see why The Hague Market is a godsend when making my world-famous, critically acclaimed, guacamole.
You can also find Yucca, Dutch cheese, mangos, and Greek olives at cheap prices.
Delicious meat and fish
If you’re more of a meat eater, you’ll be happy to find a lot of fresh butcher shops and fresh fish stores. As a man that works at one of the seafood shops puts it:
“On Tuesday, we buy fish for Wednesday, and on Thursday, we buy fish for Friday and Saturday. (…) Everything is fresh.”
And if the snack scene is more your thing, just head over to the market and delight yourself with a wide variety of snack shops: Dutch haring, fresh stroopwafels, corn in a cup, Turkish gözelme and baklava… You name it!
Home decor, jewellery, perfumes, clothes, you name it
Besides being a great and cheap place to do your groceries, the Open Market is home to all sorts of stores.
Shops that sell: curtains, carpets, men’s and women’s clothing, flowers, cosmetics, candy, home utensils, antiques, bike replacement parts, electronics, phone accessories… the list of shops goes on!
The Hague Market experience: what’s happening there?
In the words of a good Dutch colleague of mine: “It feels like I’m in of those exotic, vibrant markets that I used to find in Peru. It doesn’t feel like I’m in The Netherlands.”
And right he is.
When you step into De Haagse Markt on a busy Saturday, you’re quickly surrounded by bright colours, exotic smells of fruits and flowers, talking crowds, the calls of salespersons, and all of the life in the market.
It gives you a very different experience than the one you get during your typical Albert Heijn or Jumbo grocery trip.
So if you’re up for a different grocery trip, visit one of Europe’s biggest multicultural, open markets from 8:45 to 17:00 any given Monday, Wednesday, Friday or Saturday. And be sure to keep an eye out for those rare but always welcomed Open Sundays!
Have you been to The Hague Market? Tell us what you thought in the comments below!
Editor’s Note: This article was originally published in January 2018, and was fully updated in August 2022 for your reading pleasure.
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Love this market place but in my opinion, i still feel like i am in the Netherlands, well because its not as ethnically diverse as it should be. I wish there was more exotic food to choose from. I xant e pext it to be like NY, BUT in any case
the prices and fresh produce CANT be beat! love shopping here and eating like a queen. Amazing food and market!