Nara may be known for its temples and fascinating historic sites, but you'll also find some great shopping opportunities in this core city. If you want to feel like a local, then brush up on the age-old traditions, shop for handicrafts and linger over the locally sourced produce.

    When you visit this city, you'll find quite a few markets to explore both big and small, so it's easy to find the kind of market experience you're looking for. Check out some of the best markets in Nara that you won't want to miss out on.

    1

    Nara Central Market (奈良県中央卸売市場)

    Shop a local food market

    Nara Central Market (奈良県中央卸売市場) is a popular food market where you can get a taste of what it's like to eat like a local in Nara. A large portion of the selection here is seafood that's locally sourced and always fresh. You'll find ingredients along with already prepared meals.

    Keep in mind that the selection at this market is seasonal, so you'll find different items available depending on the time of year you visit. While seafood is popular, you'll also find fruits and vegetables like mangoes and bamboo shoots. It's all located a short distance south of the city centre in Yamatokoriyama.

    Location: 957-1 Tsutsuicho, Yamatokoriyama, Nara 639-1123, Japan

    Open: 24/7

    Phone: +81 743-56-7000

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    2

    Asuka Yume no Rakuichi (農産物直売所 あすか夢の楽市)

    Enjoy local food from a village

    Asuka Yume no Rakuichi (農産物直売所 あすか夢の楽市) is the local farmers' market for Asuka Village that offers a wide variety of fresh and processed food. Among the fresh food, you'll find plenty of fruits and vegetables with availability dependent on whatever's in season at the time. You'll also find rice and flowers on offer.

    The processed food here is something you won't want to miss out on. You'll find handmade pickles along with a variety of seasonings. Additionally, this market has quite a few sweets on hand if you're looking for snacks or dessert. You'll find it in the Takaichi District south of the city centre.

    Location: 225-2 Asuka, Takaichi District, Nara 634-0103, Japan

    Open: Daily from 9 am to 5 pm

    Phone: +81 744-54-3311

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    3

    Komorebi Market (こもれび市場)

    Visit a small roadside market

    Komorebi Market (こもれび市場) is a modest roadside market where you'll find a variety of items sourced from local farmers and producers. It's located just off the road by the Uda River, so you can easily fit a visit into your itinerary and find some good produce.

    Much of the produce here is seasonal, so you'll find different items depending on the time of year you visit. The prices also tend to be fairly affordable in comparison with a lot of other local markets. It's located by the Uda River southeast of Nara's city centre area.

    Location: 3139-2 Murousanbonmatsu, Uda, Nara 633-0317, Japan

    Open: Daily from 8 am to 4 pm

    Phone: +81 745-92-5072

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    4

    Asuka Yume Farmers Market (あすか夢販売所)

    See Asuka Village's pride and joy

    Asuka Yume Farmers Market (あすか夢販売所) is a lovely market that serves as a bridge between producers and consumers with fresh produce and more. Most of the selection here is fresh fruit and vegetables grown and produced by local farmers from the village.

    This marketplace exists not only to provide people with the food they need but also to revitalise agriculture as a viable industry for the village. Plus, you'll find some souvenirs to take home, as this market makes a special effort to cater to travellers. You can see it for yourself off of Route 169 south of Nara City.

    Location: 2-1 Misono, Asuka, Takaichi District, Nara 634-0131, Japan

    Open: Daily from 9 am to 5 pm

    Phone: +81 744-54-5670

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    5

    Tsubai Market (椿井市場)

    Visit a market from the Shōwa era

    Tsubai Market (椿井市場) is a historic market where you can explore the remnants of what was once a bustling market with only a few shops and restaurants remaining. The aesthetic is particularly popular with travellers, especially if they're fans of the Kyoto Animation production 'Beyond the Boundary', which used this market as a location.

    When you visit, you'll find quite a few shrines throughout the market, as well as a few shops and restaurants still in operation. The covered market is in the middle of Nara City, so it's easy to get to if you're already in town. It's located just east of the city centre.

    Location: Tsubaicho, Nara, 630-8343, Japan

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