Market number 1: Looking for more lie than the city was offering we headed to the fish market, Mercado Central.
Here the sea urchins were the size of grapefruit, instead of mandarins.
That's my hand next to a mussel! Insane.
But I have to say it felt very touristy. So we headed over the bridge in front of the fish market out of the city. The bridge had a sign that stated selling wares on the bridge was strictly prohibited...people lined each side of it selling anything and everything. The most intriguing were freshly processed chickens out of a plastic bag in a grocery trolley. Interesting, from market number 2. But...still it felt like the tip of an iceberg.
Then there was rather flashy market number 4, with a rad roof. One step forward, one step back.Heading beyond that we came to market number 4, La Vega Central, the real deal.
Stacks of produce stacked up behind brightly painted doors.
Little cafes with ancient arcade machines.
And crowd gathered round some young dancers set the scene off beautifully. They were fantastic.The last market was vibrant and raw. Full of hand-painted signs over each vendors stall.Puppies! There were dogs everywhere, but unlike previous experiences in Greece a decade ago when my sister were quite fearful of the mangy, half-starved dogs roaming the streets, the dogs in Santiago all seemed very plump, and sleepy, most just lying about in the late autumn sun. Avocados. A lot of avocados. So, in the end it all turned out well. But my tip is to head out of the center, if you want to find some real local ambiance.