Mercado de la Ribera (Ribera Market), Bilbao

Mercado de la Ribera (Ribera Market), Bilbao (must see)

Seen from the front, on the bank of the Nervion Estuary, the Ribera Market looks like a Mississippi steamboat made of stone and glass. Built in 1929, it covers 10,000 square meters. It is the largest covered market in Europe. It was mentioned in the Guinness Book of Records in 1990 as the largest food market in the world.

The market is located on Ribera Street near the Main Square (Plaza Mayor), the Church of San Anton, and the Town Hall. The market houses the Conde de Mirasol Walkway and connects to the San Anton Bridge. Ribera Street is between the estuary banks and the buildings of the Old Town of Bilbao (Casco Viejo), also called the Seven Streets (Las Siete Calles).

The market of Bilbao has existed since the 14th century. It was referred to as the "nerve center" of the town and was described by 19th-century Bilbao composer and writer Emiliano de Arriaga as "a well-stocked market with whatever the most refined gourmet could desire." In the 1800s, an enclosure of iron and glass was built to house the market.

In 1928, a new market, designed by architect Pedro de Ispizua, was built in the trendy Rationalist style. The aim was open spaces without columns with good ventilation and natural lighting. Stained glass, latticework, and decorated facades made for an eclectic Art Deco appearance. In 2010 the market foundations were strengthened.

The market has never closed. Fishmongers are on the ground floor. There are fish, fresh and frozen, shellfish, and pickles. The first floor houses meat, delis, pastries, and preserves. The second floor offers fruits and vegetables, flowers, seeds, and grains; most products are brought directly from nearby villages.

There are also gourmet bar-restaurants in a space that, thanks to a recent initiative, is filled with the sounds of jazz daily.

Want to visit this sight? Check out these Self-Guided Walking Tours in Bilbao. Alternatively, you can download the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from Apple App Store or Google Play Store. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Mercado de la Ribera (Ribera Market) on Map

Sight Name: Mercado de la Ribera (Ribera Market)
Sight Location: Bilbao, Spain (See walking tours in Bilbao)
Sight Type: Attraction/Landmark
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

Walking Tours in Bilbao, Spain

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