Rusty’s Market in Cairns, Queensland


Living in Cairns since April, I’ve appreciated all the fresh produce that this region has to offer. If you get a chance to visit Cairns in Queensland, a visit to Rusty’s Market should surely be on your itinerary, especially if you love fresh, local grown produce.

This iconic market has been open for the last 30 years and has some of the finest, freshest produce you can buy. Prices tend to be cheaper than the regular grocery store, so grab a bag and do some shopping! I’ve taken some photos with my Android phone and as I bid farewell to Cairns I wanted to share some of my last images of a place I spent many weekend hours visiting.

These cute cupcakes are not edible, they are gorgeous hand crafted soaps! Not sure I’d ever want to use this pretty soap but would make a great gift for sure. The cake slices below are also soaps, how creative is this.

A favorite treat for us besides the fruits and veggies was visiting the Samosa stand, where you can choose from Spinach & Cheese or Vegetable. You can also purchase a lemon lime mint cooler, so refreshing on a hot summer’s day.

Not only can you buy fresh fruits, veggies, and samosas, also out on offer are a multitude of hot food stalls- from gluten free cakes, to a cheese shop, seafood shop, clothing, crafts, flowers, coffee, and sugar cane & coconut juice. Food heaven.

If you’re an early morning riser, Rusty’s will reward you- you’ll get to sample most of the fruit out on offer. We’ve gone without eating breakfast and have sampled peaches, nectarines, tomatoes, avocados, strawberries, mangoes, pineapples, melons, oranges, watermelon and a few I’m sure I’ve missed, but you could go around to all the stalls twice and discreetly sample till you’re full. Free fruit for all!

Money saving Tip:

If you are willing to wait, head over to Rusty’s on Sunday afternoon right before closing time. This is when you get the best deals on produce, since its the last day of the market and the vendors want to make sure they sell everything they’ve got. Keep in mind some of the items you want might already be sold out, but we’ve seen boxes of apples go for $2, and pineapples for 50 cents each. Another great deal we’ve scored was avocados- 6 for $2. Almost unheard of prices for Australia.

Here is a handy map so you can find Rusty’s:

Hours of Operation:

Friday 5am-6pm, Saturday 6am-3pm, Sunday 6am-2pm

Hopefully you’ll love wandering through the stalls as much as we did. After living in Thailand, I didn’t think we’d find anything like this here in Australia so I’m happy I was able to enjoy it. If you can’t make it out on your visit to Queensland, spread the word so that everyone knows about this unique weekend market. What do you think, if you had a chance to visit would you take a few hours to explore Rusty’s Market? 

Where is your favorite wet market in the world?


  • rebecca says:

    lovely market and wish my local market had samosa how cool

  • Michi says:

    I love local markets!! I found one as soon as we moved to Belfast, and anyone could find me browsing and eating there every weekend, hehehe. *sigh* But yours is outdoors, with lots of fresh fruits and vegetables! The weather in Australia looks wonderful.

    By the way, happy new year and I hope all is well! Un beso guapa!

    • Mica says:

      Happy New Year to you too mija. Australia is getting so hot! At least now I’m in Tasmania so not so hot as Cairns, but I miss the market as I live in a tiny town with no fresh market to speak of for a at least a few hours drive!

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