We took a Sunday drive out to the bay last weekend to check out the Cleveland Village Farmer's Markets and to lunch at the Grand View Hotel, recommended to us by a friend.
The markets run each Sunday from 7.00am - 1.00pm in a closed off section of Bloomfield Street (between Middle and Queens Streets) flanked by a row of shops and cafes, most of which were open for Sunday trading.
The atmosphere was incredibly relaxed and I'm not sure if it's a regular occurrence or a result of the extreme heat, but the markets were very quiet which actually made shopping and strolling from stall to stall a pleasure.
With perhaps 50 stalls, the market presented a surprisingly eclectic array of products and a slight New Age or mystic edge; from plants and herbs to jewellery, windchimes and cowbells, incense, essential oils and Tarot readings.
Food wise I saw half a dozen fresh produce stalls including one organic grower and Stanthorpe's famous unwaxed apples, fresh seafood, a butcher and a baker; we were lucky to pick up a bucket of Bowen mangoes for $10. Specialty stalls included freshly roasted nuts, a deli proffering olives, stuffed bellpeppers and smoked mushrooms amongst other delicacies, and Chai Tea blends. Freshly made pizza and Transylvanian Cheese Pies are available for purchase, as is fairy floss and snow cones for the kids.
My personal favourites were the peanut butter freshly made from Kingaroy peanuts (I bought a large for $8), and the colourful Equitable Trade woven baskets - my friend picked a gorgeous and spacious one for just $30.