The Central Coast of New South Wales has plenty of regular markets at which you can stock up on fresh local produce, homemade goods, clothing, freshly baked bread and more.
The Ettalong Markets are open every week of the year, and even do business on holiday Mondays. Head to the corner of Ocean View and Schnapper roads at Ettalong beach any time between 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. During open days, a range of stalls, along with cafes, restaurants and a multi-screen cinema complex are all available, perfect for making a day out of your trip.
There's a door prize on Sundays which is drawn at 1:00 p.m., with the lucky winner receiving a prize that changes every week. Bring the kids along to make the most of the live singing performances and children's entertainment that occurs every weekend. And if it's raining, there's no need to worry - the Ettalong Market is completely undercover.
Speaking of kids, take them to Beryl Caterson's stall Village Kidz, which sells a range of quality handmade girls' dresses, craft aprons, headbands, door stops and clothing. Those looking for something a bit different will love Greg and Sandy's Spirit Connections stall, which offers new age books, tarot and oracle cards, Tibetan singing bells, crystals, Australian gift cards, gemstones and jewellery.
Fuel your shopping with crepes, homemade cakes and coffee from Palacinki Cafe, or try La Fiamma's Pizzeria for wood fired pizza made with care and love. There's also plenty of fruit and vegetables, homewares, antiques, luggage and more to pick up while you're here.
Avoca Beachside Markets
Held every fourth Sunday, the Avoca Beachside Markets run from 9:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. at Avoca Beach.
After an overwhelming response from the Central Coast community, the markets have become a permanent fixture in the area. Shoppers, stallholders and local artists alike have come together to support the award-winning Avoca Beachside Markets, which have now become the Coasts's premier regular art and musician market. The relaxed, creative environment is perfect for families, couples, friends and singles looking for everything from local art and jewellery right through to international food. Lizotte's provides local musicians to entertain the crowds.
There's a strong focus on sustainability at the markets, with patrons encouraged to carpool, walk, cycle or catch public transport to the event. You can even buy a screen-printed Avoca Markets Bag from the site office for a sturdy, eco-friendly way to transport your new goodies home.
Take a breather at the 'chill out chai and collectibles' area under the trees, where you can pick up some fresh fruit and refreshing chai. Let the kids get creative at the Enchanted Craft Circle or kick around a ball with them at the oval.
Shelly Beach Markets
The Shelly Beach Markets take place under cover, meaning they'll be held on the last Saturday of every month at the grounds of Tuggerah Lakes Secondary College rain or shine. They run from 8:00 am until 2:00 p.m. and blend sustainability with diversity, originality and creativity, offering a wide array of goods and services to shoppers.
The markets are made up of four zones - the main area, food and drink zone, vintage space and dedicated kids space. All up, there are more than 100 stalls for the whole family to enjoy. Entry is free to the markets, and there's plenty of live music and face paint to keep little ones entertained as you roam the venue. Take the opportunity to relax with a foot massage or sample some gourmet wares from chefs and artisans.
Everything sold at the market needs to be approved by management first, ensuring customers only get the best quality products and there are no double-ups between stall holders.
For cosmetics and skin care, check out Eco Pirates, Mary Kay and Sensational Soaps Australia. Pick up some new jewellery pieces at Made With Love Jewellery and Baltic Amber and Babywearing. Vintage lovers will be in paradise at Nanna Had That, which sells luggage, clothes, books, jewellery and antiques.
Replenish your energy stores with a bite to eat from the food zone. Head to Sugar and Spice Gourmet Foods for Australian gourmet products, or try a wood fired pizza from Wheelie Great Pizzas.
Gosford City Markets
Head to the Gosford City Markets in Kibble Park on the second Saturday of every month, excluding January. The markets run from 8:00 a.m. until 1:00 p.m. rain, hail or shine, and feature fresh produce, meat, bakery goods and hot food along with wines, fresh produce, crafts, artwork and health and beauty products.
The markets are run as a partnership between Gosford Business Improvement District and Gosford City Rotary, with proceeds after expenses donated to Gosford City Rotary to be poured back into Gosford projects.