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Jan 10, 2011 01:12 PM

Looking for market/street food recs in Playa Del Carmen

Spending a week at the Valentin Imperial with another couple later this month. Since our resort is all-inclusive, we aren't looking for much in terms of restaurants, but are interested in spending a few days trolling for some really good authentic food that would be relatively easy for us to find. Also any recs for open-air markets that aren't too touristy would be welcomed as well.

I have searched the board and all of the info includes restaurants and is a little overwhelming, so I thought you guys may be able to narrow it down for what we are specifically looking for. Looks like Rick Bayless recommends looking around the DAC market. I've also been told to look for the push carts at the bottom of Juarez next to the church and 5th. Any thoughts or other ideas?

Thanks in advance!

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  1. p.s. anyone ever stayed at the Valentin? Any tips?

    1. You have allready paid for meals, so you want authentic and inexpensive treats in Playa. Best values: Dac's for green groceries, limes and avocados and smoothies; La Floresta for shrimp tacos, La Tarraya for a fishburger and ceviche mixto chico, a kilo of arrachera and a roasted onion at Supercarne on s. 1 ave, and a torta de lechon at 30th and 30th, under the blue tarp, mornings before 10, and the ladies selling fruit cups under the banyan trees near the dock. The carts are OK but not memorable. Everything I mentioned is really inexpensive, authentic, and a refreshing change from the all-inclusive fare. Buen provecho.

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      1. re: Veggo

        Good recs! Also check out the tianguis on Saturdays at Parque la Ceiba for an interesting local market experience. If you are in town early weekdays, head to the empanada cart manned by Don Luis on ave. 20 near the bus station. Great authentic tacos with all the scary bits can be found at Tacos Gomez on calle 2 between aves. 15 and 20. There are open 4 pm until very late. Great after bar/club stop!