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Just a Minute! Ibiza Markets

One of the most pleasurable pastimes on the island is exploring the local markets, as Just a Minute discovers

It's the simple things in life that make Sundays at the dawn of a Mediterranean spring so pleasurable.

Drawing back my curtains to the sun rising over the hills of San Jose. The warmth of the sun challenging the chill of the early morning air. Pulling on a warm coat, scarf and hiking boots for the walk along the coast to Rita's for breakfast. Stopping to watch some hardy souls water-skiing in the bay. Families with their young children riding on the promenade. Couples young and old strolling arm in arm, I pause to chat with those I know.

Emerging into the spring sunshine for another year the period of winter hibernation is over .The island's stretching her arms out wide and brushing the 'sleepy dust' from her eyes., Everyone has a smile upon their face. They are enjoying the last few weeks before the season starts in earnest. Winter has passed. The splendour of Almond white and pink blossom now a memory, but it will be return, as sure as night follows day.

Following breakfast I decide to drive over to San Joan, in the 'the north' as most call that area of Ibiza. It's a bit of a trek but worth the time and effort. A beautiful and tranquil village with a wonderful chapel dominating the centre. A new Sunday market has opened up, full of wonderful produce and people.

There are many markets on the island over the weekend and most, if not all, are referred to locally as 'hippy markets'.

Cala Llenga market, for example, is a thriving, active place. Sure, some of the 'usual suspects' have travelled up from the San Jordi market but they are vastly outnumbered by the other stalls.

Local school children selling delicious home-made cakes to raise money for a forthcoming trip. There is a different vibe here. A market full of hustle and bustle. You can pause a while, sit in the sun and enjoy a beer with a plate of paella. Around 1pm a live band will fire up and entertain whilst you soak up the atmosphere chatting to others sat at your long table. A great way to spend a Sunday afternoon.

The place for me now however, for lazing about on a Sunday is the market in the hamlet of San Joan, located in a small plaza overlooked by the church. It's a wonderful place to spend a few hours pottering about picking up supplies for the week.

Arriving at midday, three blues musicians I recognised were busy setting up their equipment in front of the local café. Fresh produce for sale, locally and organically grown. Two 'Kiwi's' supplying coffee they have imported, blended and roasted themselves on the island. Free range eggs, home-made jams, freshly baked French pastries, cakes, organic breads. Artists selling their crafts and paintings, the list is endless.

There's a genuine cosmopolitan feel here and as I walked around I'd hear Spanish, German, French, Dutch, Italian and English being spoken. People from the world coming together, catching up and passing the day.

Laden down with my purchases, I sat on the steps to dunk my organic biscuits into a cup of steaming hot 'Meke's' coffee. The wonderful sound of live rhythm and blues music filling the air. Small children dancing around to the infectious beat. Warm and generous applause from us all at the conclusion of each song.

I know it's a bit of a hike from the traditional areas of Ibiza but, if you fancy an alternative to 'the most famous hippy market on Ibiza' then I'd urge you to join me on a Sunday in San Joan. I'll be sat on the steps soaking in the atmosphere. I hope to see you there.

Just a minute!

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