The Mercado mall is located in one of Hamburg’s most popular shopping areas close to the train station in Altona. At first glance, you’ll notice all the international mainstream shops spread across four levels. If you enjoy shopping, go ahead and explore, but the shops are not the main attraction of this place!
My favorite area located on the ground floor resembles an eclectic indoor market with approximately 30 small stands creating a cozy and somewhat intimate atmosphere. It’s like a food court and a farmer’s market in one. Here you can obtain fresh produce or fish, exotic spices and an abundance of colorful flowers. Or you can tickle your taste buds with a variety of international dishes (e.g. Turkish, Vietnamese, fresh seafood, sushi). Locals typically come here during their lunch break to indulge in some of the lovely lunch specials or just for a little shopping break. Throughout the year, they also feature different culinary themes such as (temporary) cupcake stands or the annual Oktoberfest with Bavarian specialties and live music.
Depending on which entrance you take, you’ll notice a large stand with an enormous variety of Turkish candy and pastry. Feast your eyes and palate on caramelized sweets made with pistachios, walnuts and almonds, or the colorful dried fruits such as apricots, plums and dates. My favorite is the Arabic nougat that is available in all shapes and sizes. Mmmm…let me know if you were able to resist!