A Love of Nepal Street Markets

Kathmandu street market

I must admit, I am no Andrew Zimmerman when it comes to food. I have been a vegetarian for more than 25 years and so enjoying local delicacies is sometimes hard if not impossible.  However, I still love street markets, just not for the food, but for the glimpse of local life and culture they provide.  As a lover of travel photography, street markets present some of the best photo opportunities and some of my favorite pictures were at street markets.

Spices for sale at Kathmandu street market

The great thing about street markets is that it is hard to take bad pictures and no special equipment is required.  You can take great pictures with an iphone or an expensive DSLR.  To me, the key to taking great street market pictures is to pause and think about what would make an interesting photograph. I usually prefer to include people in the pictures, but often times it is the subject matter itself that can capture the eye of the viewer.

Nepal has an incredibly diverse range of food markets and the markets are as diverse as the people and culture.  From meat markets on the way to Everest to the Ason Market in Kathmandu sight, sounds and unfortunately smells can often overwhelm.  Kathmandu markets can be chaotic and at times overwhelming, but this is what makes the markets so interesting.  The markets have their own pulse

Fish for sale at market


Perhaps the most interesting market in Nepal is the Saturday market at Namche Bazaar.  Namache Bazaar is a day hike from the Lukla airport, and the first stop over for trekkers who are hiking to Everest.  Most people spend at least a full day in Namache Bazaar in order to climatize as its elevation is just over 11,000 feet.  We were lucky as our climatization day in Namche Bazaar happened to be a Saturday and the market is filled with hikers and locals alike.  One thing that is more amazing to consider is that there are no roads to Namche Bazaar, so everything must be carried to the market.  Carrying my backpack up to Namche was hard enough, I could not imagine carrying up sides of meat.

Meat for sale (refrigeration is the sheer cold)
Yaks bring up goods to the Namche Bazaar market
Lugging goods to Namche Bazarre


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