The city of Aarau in northern Switzerland always turns into a Mecca for carrot-lovers on the first Wednesday of November. The colourful “Rüeblimärt” (carrot market) has been a rooted fixture since 1982.
Carrots extend as far as the eye can see, offered in all colours and shapes and used to make delicacies such as carrot pasta, carrot risotto, carrot soup and carrot sausage. The yellow, orange and violet vegetables are artistically arranged into floral displays and faces.
People travel to the market from far and wide. Travel companies put on special coach tours. Up to 40,000 visitors admire the 140 carefully arranged stands. Everyone enjoys themselves, despite the crowds.
Aarau is the capital of Aargau, which has long been called at the carrot canton. This description probably comes from the second half of the 19th century, but it’s not in fact correct: canton St Gallen wears the carrot crown. It’s thought there was a mix-up between “Rüebli”, the Swiss-German for carrot, and “Räbe”, Swiss-German for a white turnip, an old Aargau cultivated plant.
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