I first happened upon this place over 20 years ago when it was just a ‘country market’ with the added appeal of having goats grazing on it’s turf roof. It was a great place to stop on the way to Port Aberni.
Since then it has evolved to be a destination in and of itself! To be sure the country market with the goats on the roof is still there but it’s now almost like a small village.Firstly, the country market is huge. It has so many isles … so many nooks and crannies to explore that you can spend an hour or more just wandering and looking at all the items for sale. They have an amazing variety of food specialty items with an impressive array of meats, sausages, cheeses and delicacies from around the world. (Note … if you like horseradish but can’t seem to find one that’s actually ‘hot’ … try their ‘Goatradish’ … but be aware … it’s the hottest we’ve ever come across … and we’ve even made our own! Also … their smoked salmon pate is AMAZING!)
In addition to the food, the market has interesting and fun novelties from around the world for sale – some things you’ll find nowhere else!
After leaving the market, be sure to wander the rest of the grounds. There is a great produce market, nursery, pottery sales, clothing stores, restaurants and ice cream parlours. (Note … if you like Mexican … be sure to find the Taqueria food truck behind the produce market … the patio is large and shaded under a huge tree. Very good food and a pleasant place to escape the heat.)
There are some cool, giant carvings in the centre of the grounds and kids love climbing on them.
This is a popular spot so getting there early is best. You’ll be able to find parking either in one of the lots – or most likely will end up parking on the street which is pretty easy to get in and out of.
Coombs is about 2 ½ hours north of Victoria and easy to find. It’s a beautiful drive and well worth a look!