Originally called the Takapuna Flea Market, this regular Sunday morning market had humble beginnings but is now positively thriving. Covering the whole of the municipal carpark in Anzac Street, it kicks off at 6am. There’s plenty of parking around Takapuna, but you have to be canny to get a free park. If you’re a serious shopper, you should arrive well before 9am for the pick of the day’s fresh produce and flowers. On the other hand, if you’re more interested in bargain hunting, it can pay to whizz around nearer to the midday closing time when many stallholders will do some great deals simply because they don’t want to take anything home with them.
As well as a huge selection of well-priced fresh fruit and vegetables, the Takapuna market is a popular spot for browsing the second hand goods, from tools to trinkets. Artisan products such as bread, olive oil, handmade soaps, cheeses and sausage are in abundance here, as well as some delightful cakes, local and ethnic foods (the mussel fritters are in huge demand), honey and fresh fish. You’ll also find a number of art and craft stalls. One of my favourites is the ponga logs carved with beautiful Maori motifs.