Balatan Public Market - Beautiful Sunday

2년 전

My Share for #BeautifulSunday initiated by @ace108

Also my share for #Marketfriday by @dswigle

It's another beautiful day and it is time again for me to share another part of our travel, in the Bicol Region of the Philippines. Last time I took you along with me on a 10 hour long road trip that led us to coastal village. Today on the second part of our journey I will take you on a tour around one of the public markets in Bicol. If you would like to see how a typical market looks like in our country, then hop on as we go shopping.


Balatan Public Market

If you missed the road trip you can check the first part of our adventure below.

Part 1 The Long and Winding Road to Bicol


After a good night's sleep, I was fully recharged from that very long drive going to the village. Waking up early morning I immediately headed to the beach to hear the gentle sound of waves. The sound that I wish to hear every morning as I open my eyes. I'd better make the most out of it as I don't get chances like this too often.

As I headed back, I asked Ate Daisy what was our agenda for the day. She said that we are going to the market to buy food and some supplies. Markets are full of surprises especially in different regions as market produce differ in each place. I got excited as I wanted to see what the market has to offer. Sometimes we see different species of seafood and vegetables every time we visit markets in our country.

From our location in the village, it will take you around 6-7 minutes by car to reach the market area. I was also told that majority of the people here do their shopping during Friday. Friday is the day where there are a lot of good for sale at the market.


Upon reaching the market, you could already see fish for sale by the road.

Vendors will be calling you out to buy some of their fish.

You could get a good price for fish here if you know how to haggle.

I asked what type of fish are these as I do not see this kind of fish at our market back home. They said this is a species of Carp and has a very strong fishy taste when not cooked properly. I have never tasted carp before, but maybe next time we will give it a try.

Tilapia is very common in our country this fish can be bought almost anywhere in our country.

We moved on to another section of the market and we were looking for some "Pasalubong." The word Pasalubong means something to take home with you as a gift for loved ones during travelling. It could come as a form of food, clothing or souvenirs. What can I say we love giving stuff to our loved ones and it is the thought that always counts.

Steamed corn is also very common in our country. You could see vendors in almost all market places and you could sometimes even see them travelling on the road selling corn.

We found the area where they sell all sorts of Pasalubong. Vendors would be calling out to you and ask what you are looking for. It would be quite hard not to buy anything especially if you have a sweet tooth.

These are sweet tamarind packed in small plastic packets. It is made into a kind of candy that has a sweet, sour and salty taste.

Looks like some sort of biscuit and I'm not sure what it is called. We have a lot of these kinds of biscuits in our country.

Peanuts for a quick snack anyone? The popular ones are salted and sugar coated peanuts.

If you do not know what to buy, you could always ask what is the most popular produce in the region. Here in Bicol the "Pili Nut" is one of the popular pasalubong for your loved ones. The Pili Nut thrives in Southeast Asia and does not tolerate cold temperatures. The taste is similar to pumpkin seeds as some of the people describe it.

The nuts are made into candy like treats which are often roasted, salted and sugar coated.


This looks like sesame seeds that have been coated with sugar.

Other candies are wrapped with colored plastic wrappers to make it more attractive to children.

After going thru that sweet sweet area, we needed to buy some vegetables next.

Cabbages for sale for 50 pesos per kilo which is roughly around $1 USD a kilo.

This is called the calamansi which is our local lime. Very sour and is often used to marinate meat, mixed with soy sauce as dipping and also made into a juice. Pretty much our version of the lime and you could do with it what you would do with lime. Prices are around 60 pesos per kilo which is like $1.15 in USD, but you could also buy 1/4 kilo.

Ginger and tomatoes mixed together.

Red onions that has a sweeter taste than the regular onions. Very common and can be found in all markets here.

Different sorts of spices are sold in this stall like black pepper corn, bay leaf and looks like they mixed dried shrimp along with the spices.

One of the local favorites in our country is dried fish and there are so many varieties. So popular they are even exported to some parts of the globe.

This is called the "Tinapa" which is smoked fish. This variety looks be made from sardine, but the popular fish used back at home is the milk fish.

Our country is an archipelago surrounded by bodies of water which gives us access to a lot of marine life. Best way to preserve and store for a longer period of time is salting and drying the fish. Dried fish are very accessible almost anywhere in the country.

These are dried flying fish which we do not have back at home. We bought 1\4 kilo just to be able to taste it.

The king of all dried fish is the "Tuyo." A species of sardine which is very popular at the Philippine breakfast table. Best matched with garlic rice, salted eggs and sliced tomatoes. With vinegar as dipping, the best traditional way of eating this is by using your hands.

Another variety which I do not know what kind of fish is used. This is fried until crispy and best dipped is spicy vinegar.

Fish that are butterflied are called "Daing." The bigger fish are processed this way and when I was young I always called them as the two headed fish. This type should not be fried to a crisp as it is best that the meat is still a bit soft. While some want it crispy, but it tends to taste bitter when over cooked.

This fish is called the "Sap Sap" here in our country. It is often steamed or boiled but the dried ones also tastes great.

Just beside the Sap Sap is our Philippine anchovy called the "Dilis." Fried to a crisp, also spiced and sweetened for a tasty treat.

A bought a little bit of everything from this stall which will be a perfect breakfast for days to come. A warning though if ever you would be cooking dried fish, you would need to fry it in a well ventilated area as the odor could be quite unpleasant to some.

After that dried fish shopping, we explored more of the market place.

My mother in law was looking for bananas and you could always find them anywhere. Along roads you could sometimes find banana trees with fruits. If it does not belong to anyone you could just get some from the tree as they thrive everywhere in our country.

This species is called the "Saba." Often used for cooking it can be eaten as it is, but I do not know anyone who eats with out being cooked. Made into a dessert by mixing with sweetener, milk and crushed ice. There are so many recipes for this banana and the possibilities are endless.

This banana is called the "Tundan." The banana that everyone loves and could be bought around 30 pesos per cluster which is around $0.58 USD.

More fruits and vegetables along this area. Veggie lovers would have a fun time shopping for vegetables here.

An unusual looking squash as the ones the I am accustomed to are the round ones. I do not see this variety at back at home.

Sweet potato and cassava can be found here. What could you prepare with these ingredients?

Now everyone knows the avocado, but not everyone likes them. They contain a lot of vitamins, high in fat and has a lot of health benefits. Here it is a great dessert, mixed with milk and sugar, made into ice popsicle and is a great flavor for ice cream.

Bicol region is also know for their love for chili and spicy food. There will never be a shortage of chili here as I was told almost every resident has a chili plant in their back yard.

I tried asking what are these leaves for, but in this region they have a different dialect. A lot knows the main dialect that we speak, but there are some who knows only a few words.

These are flaked dried cassava and my mother in law told me that these are fried. Once crispy they are like vegetable cracklings and the color just adds to the fun of eating it.

At the market, there are other goods for sale like this mat which is called "Banig" locally. Back in the days they just used these types of mat to sleep on. My grandma used to tell me that it is very cool to sleep on these mats as it doesn't warm up the body like the usual bed mattress.

Hand made brooms called "Walis Tambo." These are made from Tiger grass and can be found in all Philippine homes.

Other small items are also sold on stalls. Little things like thread, brushes, ointments and even glue. Let's just say it's like a small stall where you could find little things that we usually use.

The meat section does not offer much the meat looks fresh.

We bought a couple of kilo of pork belly for lunch. We just usually marinate pork belly with oyster sauce and roast them over coal.

Just outside the market a man was selling pineapples. He had them on a sidecar of a motorcycle which is a good way of getting around selling your goods.

He sold them for 20 pesos each and that is around $.38 USD per pineapple. You could have him peel and slice the pineapples for you if you wish.

We got everything that we needed and it is time for us to end this trip. I hope you had a good time coming along with me to shop in this market. This concludes the second part of our journey and I have so many other places to share with you in the Bicol region. I hope you join me again for our next adventure.

Until then have an amazing day and keep on reaching for your goals in this journey that we call life.



Pili Nut

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Wow!!! Fantastic post, as in I really tour with you. This looks like a huge market with soooo many items to look at and to buy.

Thank you for sharing all the amazing photos with us. It does look like the market I had been here at my place with lots of dried fish. =)

Glad you had a good time.


You are very welcome. I'm glad you enjoyed the trip.

It would be hard to not be a beautiful Sunday with a journey like this!

The road trip was amazing but this agenda he's quite exciting all by itself. It didn't take long for us once we get there to see that this is a very popular fish market. I can say that everything looks like it came right out of the water and to keep in it's fresh estate I am sure that haggling would be the way to go! Carp is wonderful but I can say that if it's not cooked right I don't care for it! Tilapia is also something that's very common for us to eat come here in the United States and I like it because it's a nice light fish it goes well with many other sides.

I just had this discussion with someone else here on the platform about buying gifts for loved ones and that is exactly what I said was it is the thought that counts. I was brought up in a family that bought little gifts for people they loved when they went away. And who doesn't love corn on the cob? It is one of my favorite go-to foods! I'm not familiar with that candy that is sweet sour and salty. But I can tell you just by the description it is something that I would love. You're sweet area was amazing and I can't imagine getting out of there alive! At least not having to buy something!

Your version of the line looks exactly like a line crossed with a orange, but I'm sure that it is wonderful the price sounds right! That's funny to see the Ginger mixed with the tomatoes. And I like all different kinds of onions also. That would be an abundance Spice Market. Oh how I do know that dried fish favorite! I am not familiar with the milkfish but of course sardines I am drying fish or smoking it is something that my mom used to do for the winter time when fishing was not as popular. I have never had the flying fish so you'll have to tell me what they taste like. It has to be amazing to walk around a market that has piles of fish that are as big as some hills. And yes! You are so right about the dried fish and cooking. You only do that one time. Those short, squat bananas called Saba is a go to treat. The dried cassava was interesting. Fruits to Knotts to pineapples and meat! I do not think I have ever been so thoroughly shopped as I have today! You gave an amazing adventure for a market Friday and I do not think that you will be able to top this for a long time! It is always appreciate the time spent Gathering and putting a post for this together. It is very much appreciated and I wish you a most wonderful day.

#MarketFriday loves you!

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It was a good thing it was a Friday when we visited. That is the only day when the have a lot to offer truly #MarketFriday lol. You said it all my friend and for sure I would have fun roaming around a market place with you. Next best thing is sharing the experience the best way I can. I really hope that you could experience an authentic Philippine breakfast one day with the dried fish. About the dried flying fish I pretty sure we bought some but was nowhere to be found. Maybe we left it at our hosts house, well anyway I'll try to find some if I could at our market at home.

Another thing here is they have a different dialect. My wife understands the language but couldn't speak the dialect during full conversation. Best way that always works is point to what you want and give a smile lol. I really think so too that I would have a hard time to top off this market but I'm really excited to visit another one if we have another chance to travel. Markets always feels like a surprise out of the box. You would never know what varieties of fish they have and some even have insects for sale. I'm still trying to find where it is.

Thank you very much my friend really glad that you loved it and have an magical day ahead.

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Thanks for the support!

A great variety of fresh and dried food there


Have you tried any dried fish like these before? Thanks @ace108

I am impressed by the abundance of products on the market, especially the fish!


It was a bit late that day. I was told there are more during early morning as the fishing port is just in front of the market place.


I know that it is best to go on the market as early as possible. I figured the source of the fish should be close.

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Wow- this brings back great memories. Thank you for sharing.

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Glad to have shared a part of our experience and life in our country.

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A tremendous market post. I wonder if all this goes well with fish. Well, it doesn't need to ;)


It was a bit long I have to admit lol. As for the fish these species are abundant in the country and I have been seeing them since I was little. Probably the perks living in an archipelago is the abundance of marine life. Still government does their job to monitor marine life to ensure they don't get endangered. Cheers!

Wow! I love markets and that's one I'd love to visit. So many interesting and flavourful ingredients to play with and to choose from. One visit would not be enough!


You would love it here and I'm sure you'd fix up and delicious meal with all the ingredients.


Perhaps one day...

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Hey @watersnake101

Great post. That is an awesome looking market. So many things to see. Fresh fish of so many varieties. Great pics.

Thanks for sharing.


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It was a good trip to the market. You could really learn much about a region by visiting markets.


I agree. A real social hub. We are fairly close to the biggest open market in Bucharest. It's a real beehive of culture.

Nice big market place with so much on offer, lots of dried fish not something we see, well not in markets I have been to.

Fruits and vegetables are very similar to what we have, the Saba banana in curry dish is delicious. Roast sweet potatoes are something we use in a variety of dishes here in South Africa.


Ah I have never heard of Saba in curry. It sounds heavenly.


Ah I have never
Heard of Saba in curry.
It sounds heavenly.

                 - watersnake101

I'm a bot. I detect haiku.

Thanks for the tour of the market and all the great photos and explanations. I just bought a cabbage here at a market and it was $5.00 Canadian. Granted it was large but cabbage is grown locally so I don’t know why it is so pricey.


Whoa that is expensive. Vegetables here are also staring to get expensive even almost reaching the price of meat. Best way I guess is grow your own cabbage and veggies. I would if I could.


I was surprised at the price of one cabbage but it was fresh and huge. I didn’t want to waste it -cooked half of it right away and kept the other half in the frig for another time.

I did plant and enjoyed a few jalapeños, sweet peppers and tomatoes.

This is one part of the Philippines I've never explored. I have a friend with a cottage somewhere down past Naga I hope to visit one day.


You need to visit the Bicol region. Two to three days is not enough to see it all. Taste the pili nut and get ready for spicy food!

What a beautiful market@watersnake101. I wouldn't know what to buy first, lol So many fish!!!! Love all of the fruits and veggies :) Thanks for sharing


It is hard to choose what to buy right? The dried fish has so many varieties so we bought a little bit of everything.


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Glad to see that delicious cake again. Thanks for the support!

I love the journals of your trips. They're always fun and informative. Thanks for sharing!


I try my best share in the best possible way I can my friend.

Looks like a pretty epic day out at the markets! For me, some of the fish would go down a treat but also the nut selection, I'd have to spend a bit of time sussing out that area!

But the cream of the crop would be waking up to the sound of the waves every day. There's something so tranquil about it and can spend my life just listening to the ocean lapping up on the sand.

Thanks for sharing this market day adventure with us!


You got me there buddy. That sound is something I dream of hearing everyday. Maybe one day we'll both get a nice place by the the beach. That nut section has so many ways they prepare the pili nut.


I think that sounds like a good contract to have with you. Get a house by the beach when steem price is where it ought to be in a few years time 🙂

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My mouth is watering! WOW! I leaned something from you - I do not like American bananas cooked, not even in dessert. I wonder if the Saba bananas would be tastier for me. Excellent work, thank you for putting this post together for us.


Hey I'm glad you enjoyed going thru the market with me. As for the Saba banana it is not that sweet not even when ripe and the texture is a little bit hard that the regular banana. It is really meant for cooking maybe you would like it if given a chance.

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I am so sorry that I wasn't able to download this at work, but, promise to look at it tomorrow!

It looks amazing and I want to be able to see it all! As you already know,

#MarketFriday loves you!



Oh you will be in for a treat. Thanks for the tip my friend!

Food food food! So much good food! Although I'm not a fan of fish... that's a lot of fish by the way... I would really like to try that candy! 😁

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Yes maybe a little too much fish lol. Well candy it is then lol. So much to choose from and some I have not even tasted yet.

Dry fish or called bulad here in negros philippines

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Hey kabayan. What's your favorite dried fish?

Looks like an amazing place to shop for fish!!!

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Yeah there is really a lot here and forgot to mention that it is just near the port. During early morning they have more fresh fish.

What a good market, I love the open air markets, and in this one I would go crazy with all the sweets and fish, I would really spend a pretty nice time there!


I'm sure you would enjoy it here and you would probably find everything you need to cook up a nice recipe.

Great photos and a wonderful market tour! All the different fish would be such fun to taste and compare. I would need to stay for weeks! Those sesame candies would most likely be my favorite sweet!


Ah yes you would need to stay for weeks to fully enjoy the bounties of the region. I would be your personal tour guide lol. Although of the food are acquired taste you may need to be adventurous. Have a pleasant day my friend.


That would be so much fun! I'm always up for trying anything!

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Thank you for dropping by!

How many pictures did you capture actually? I was like scrolling scrolling and scrolling. Ha ha ha
But I really enjoyed it. :)


Hahaha a lot. I think that you were thinking that the photos would never end hahaha. Still I'm happy that you enjoyed it. Thanks.

Wow! What a post and what a market my friend.
I thought that I would get lost in reading it hahaha.


Hahah maybe I have put in a little too much photos lol. Cheers!


No! I think it's a great post my friend.
Hope that you guys have a good weekend!

@watersnake I like that market it has all you need and very fresh. Congratulations