Local residents state that Odesa starts from Privoz. And it is really so. It is the largest and the most famous food market in Ukraine that is situated in the Southern Palmyra's historical center near bus and train station and reckons among Odesa's main sights on par with Primorsky Boulevard and Potemkin Stairs. You can't discover Odesa in full, if you fail to visit this bright, loud and incredibly picturesque place.
Privoz is considered town's oldest market. It was built in 1827 as a part of Old Market and got its name due to the fact that in those times mainly imported goods were sold here, and right from the delivery truck, at that. ('Privoz' is Russian for 'import'.) Back then, there were no shopping streets on its territory. Occupying an impressively large territory, Privoz soon outpaced in popularity former town fairs and became the 'king' of Odesa markets.
In the early 20th century, a unique architectural complex Fruit Passage appeared here. It consisted of four two-storey buildings connected by arches with forged gates, whose pillars were adorned with forged fruit vases. Another hundred years later, Privoz acquired two new buildings - fish and meat housings. At the same time, the old ones were reconstructed. And quite recently, modern shopping mall New Privoz was built near shopping streets.
Today Privoz occupies the territory of eight hectares, over six thousand sellers trade here every day! Odesa market's salt is the huge choice of truly Ukrainian products: salo, homemade sausage, cold backed pork, various pickles, dairy products - sour cream, cottage cheese, sheep cheese. In addition, you can always buy cooked homemade Ukrainian dishes and very tasty pastry here: poppy rolls, honey cakes, cheesecakes, pancakes with various stuffings.
And considering that Odesa is a seaside town, a separate ground is devoted to seafood and in particular to fish. There is plenty of fish here - fresh, salted, smoked, dried, cured. And we can't but mention the shopping streets that in summer are overladen with various fruits and vegetables. The main thing is that most products offered on Privoz are organic, while they are produced by Ukraine's private households.
While on market you will find predominantly foodstuff, the shopping mall New Privoz specializes on manufactured goods. Here you will see clothes and footwear from different producers, make-up and perfumery, home appliances and interior objects - in a word, you name it you have it. There is even a saying: there is nothing that you can't buy on Privoz.
But even if you are not going to buy anything, you should still drop in at Privoz; at least in order to plunge in its inimitable atmosphere and to talk to peculiar Odesa residents. By the way, it's said that famous Odesa humor was born at Ptivoz. There is no wonder in that: local sellers are inexhaustible well of aphorisms and unusual stories. And interspersing communication with buyers with jokes and joy is the whole culture that formed over almost 200 years of this original place's existence.
Important! Be careful when strolling through Privoz's shopping streets: pocket thieves are often at work here. So, keep an eye on your stuff in order to avoid troubles.