The Shuk - An Israeli Cultural Experience
Hebrew: עושים קניות בשוק - חוויה ישראלית
The shuk; you might have heard it called a souk. You've probably seen it spelled in a variety of ways; sūq, soq, souk, esouk, suk, sooq, souq, or suq. In Hebrew, we call it a shuk - שוק- mostly it refers to a food market. You may associate a shuk with images of exotic foods, spices, darling people and other exquisite things just like "Carrie Bradshaw" (of Sex in the City fame) discovered in Abu Dhabi. Not quite the place for designer outfits and Manolo Blahnik shoes but the Israeli shuk is an unique experience for tourists and "a must" for local residents.
The hustle and bustle; retailers competing to sell a kilogram of strawberries, the unique smells and a wide selection of merchandise make the shuk experience compelling and addictive. Get your sports shoes on, grab your shopping cart, put your wallet in a safe place and head on down to your nearest shuk.
Shuks in Israel are prime destinations for value-for money food and fresh produce shopping. Enjoy discounts on fruit and vegetables on Friday afternoons, just before Shabbat. Indulge yourself in super-fresh roasted “Garinim” (seeds) of numerous types; sunflower, pumpkin & watermelon loved by Israelis (and very healthy too!). Endless varieties of dried fruit, pickled olives and mouth watering baked goods baked fresh daily. Spice up your life (and your cooking) with fresh and fragrant sumac or hawaj or maybe hot or sweet paprika.
The Mahane Yehuda Market in Jerusalem and the Arab Market in the old city, Shuk HaCarmel or Sarona in Tel Aviv, Shuk Talpiot in Haifa and the Bedouin Market in Beer Sheva, are just some of the more famous shuks that Israel has to offer.