Farmers Market in Kuwait!!??? Okay, may be they sell only Dates, you think? I thought so too until I visited the place. Kuwait is a very small country by landscape located in the Arabian Peninsula. It is one of the biggest exporters of oil in the world. The source of water is the Arabian Sea and a litre of water is expensive than a litre of Petrol/Diesel. Most of the food items are imported including vegetables, fruits, spices and meat. Seafood is abundantly available locally, thanks to the Arabian Sea.
When I heard about the Farmers Market in Wafra, I wanted to visit and see for myself how agriculture is done in a desert country and what all they grow/cultivate apart from the dates. So me and my husband packed a couple of Aloo Parathas from the Khan Baba restaurant in Fahaheel (they make the BEST Aloo Parathas here) and started our road trip to Wafra. Yeah, I say road trip because it is nearly 80 km from our place. We went in the month of December and the weather was not bad. Once we crossed the city limits, all we saw was the desert and the Kuwait before the invention of oil. We saw herds of camels and sheep grazing in the desert on whatever grass they can get.It was so astonishing to see how people live in the desert without air conditioners and no immediate water supply.
We reached the market after taking few wrong turns because Google maps didn’t help us in locating correctly. Finally after reaching the market, it was all worth it. The place was like a typical Indian market with local produce and cattle. The greens, vegetables and fruits were REALLY fresh and the price was very less when compared to what we pay in the stores here that shelf in air conditioners for days. You will not come empty-handed after seeing all the fresh produce.
You can bargain and get vegetables in big cartons at a good price. Make sure you check for rotten ones because the cartons might have them at the bottom and good ones at the top.
The size of bunch of Mint, Coriander, Methi (Vendhaya keerai in Tamil) and Spinach were double the size of what we get in the city and for half the price.
Purple chilies, I saw them for the first time there.
If you have a balcony or a terrace that you can as a garden, can buy flowers and other decorative plants too.
Pets for sale. Ducks, Pigeons, Rabbits, etc.
Outside the market, there are a few small stalls that sell pickled vegetables, spices and fragrant oil and stuff. There are sand dunes that you can pay and take for a ride. For kids there is camel and horse rides.
If you are in Kuwait and planning for a day out, Wafra market is a good place. Some points to note –
- Make sure it is neither too hot or nor too cold when you go because the drive can be a bit tedious.
- Make sure your vehicle has enough gas, because there are no gas stations for a few kilometers on the route. You can get stranded there for hours if you run out of fuel.
- Pack enough supplies like water, food and other needs for the day because no shops where you can get all these.
- Start so that you can reach Wafra around 11 am so that you can spend a few hours and get back.
So do you have a farmer’s market in your place? Share your experiences in the comments below.