A bowl of mangoes for a pound? Yes please! So I had a wander through Whitechapel today and it came to my attention that I had not reviewed the market. This wonderful display of London's cultural diversity. Don't come here expecting fine foods and organic wines, you will however uncover yards of sequined fabric and fresh produce that you can't pronounce the name of.
This is a locals market, designed to supply the surrounding community with the things that they need in every day life. It's cheap, you can haggle and it's a slice of east London culture that you won't find anywhere else!
I don't understand why the other reviewers were so down on this lovely bit of commerce on Whitechapel. Where else can you get a box of 10 mangoes for 3 pounds? Maybe in Mexico, amigo. But NOWHERE else in London. Similarly, 3 bunches of coriander (AKA cllantro) for 1 pound? Great prices on exotic foods. And I bet you can bargain, though I've never tried because things are so cheap already.
There are probably 50 stalls in this market, some selling lingerie, others selling fish, and others focusing on the bollywood dvd scene. It's all good. For cheap produce though, you can't beat it.
If you're more into the Borough market thing, go down there and drink your latte while you push your three-wheel stroller. If you're more into good cheap food from nice folks (without the marketing) go to Whitechapel.
I give this market 3 stars. Why?
It's got a lot to offer, but also has the capacity to improve dramatically.
On the plus side, it offers us all the chance to buy relatively cheap fruit, veg and house hold goods.
It could be improved by offering a little more variety of products. If you walk from one end to the other, it's a bit like ground hog day after the first 100 meters. Furthermore, I find many of the store owners really rude and snappy....
Worth a visit, but certainly NOT a tourist market like Nottinghill
After a magnificent experience here, a Yelp review was a must.
I went to get a garage key copied at other lame, unnamed store. After 3 attempts, I was convinced said key was un-duplicatable. BUT WHITECHAPEL KEY MAN, I heart you and your key skills. If only I knew your name. You are small, and do not quite standout amongst the massive clothiers and fruit / veg stalls. Your stall is tiny, with scattered keys, across from the Idea store. But using a key machine and a chisel-like tool, you saved my key, and saved me a whole lot of aggregation.
I was so happy and pleased with my working key duplicate, I got a ripe juicy pineapple next door (1 pound), an entire bag of onions (15 onions = 1 pound), and a huge piece of gingahh. 30p. Delish.
Having lived so close to this market for so long, I decided it was time to go down and check it out. It's always nice to step in to a market place where you can forget where you are, and that's what this market can do for you. It feels akin to that of a marketplace in a far away country. I think the reason this is the fact that it is quite hectic, and also because it offers an eclectic mix of products from various nationalities.
Personally, I didn't really take interest in most of the products that the market has to offer. I just found a lot of it to be quite cheap and plastic. I find markets that offer antiques and quality goods to much more rewarding. Saying that, cheap is the operative word, and that is not always a bad thing. I definitely think it is a good place to stock up on fruit and vegetables.
Located adjacent to the bustle and muscle of Whitechapel Tube, the glass facade of the local library and the people passage leading to 'community Mecca' Sainsbury's, Whitechapel Market fits or rather squeezes itself into this tight, uniquely smelling corner of E1.
'Get your fruit and veg for a paaund (sic)' screams the hirsuite Asian street vendor, with a Cockney accent more authentic than Del Boy at the Dogs. Also home to a variety of phallic shaped vegetables, a random collection of children's clothes and durable hair accessories, my 50p hairbrush is still going strong caressing my thick, unruly barnet. Be warned though, if you're not into pro-Iran/Iraq leafleting and general catawallingon a Saturday afternoon then avoid like the deadly plague. The branded toothpastes are a good bet though, although don't bother trying to read the instructions for that electric toothbrush, you won't be able to digest them and could do yourself some serious oral damage!
(sorry I can't find the correct spelling on Google, ideas anyone?)
A bustling, buzzing local street market, this is the place to come if you want to soak up the sights, sounds (and smells) of local culture. Whitechapel is a long established, thriving market, and sells a huge array of bargain items from Monday to Saturday every week. Bowls of fruit or veg for a pound or less, cheap clothes, carpets, kettles, as well as spices, Indian Jewellery, sari materials, and exotic vegetables.
It's always busy and not the most calming places to buy your vegetables but the combination of cultures makes it one of the more interesting markets to visit.
My first encounter with the very un-lovely Whitechapel market was when the lack of gaps between its stalls caused me to miss a 106 bus as I dashed out of Whitechapel station, cursing loudly. I continued passing it by as a retail opportunity until very recently. Since then I have found some genuine bargains to be had, with fruit and vegetables especially among the cheapest I have seen anywhere in London. Truthfully, there is a lot of cack: dodgy clothes, cheap shoes, nasty handbags. But it's a real ethnic taste (and smell) of one of the most historically rich areas of London.
You'll find plenty of Brick Lane restaurateurs shopping here, due to the abundance of idian herbs and spices as bargain prices. Alongside this, you can pick up fresh fruit, Eastern and Western clothing, sari fabric, cheap toothpaste, plastic bins, bedding, carpets, hair accessories, jewellery, electrical goods, and multi-packs of crisps, all at knock-down prices.
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