What makes the seafood market popular and unique is more than just their seafood, it’s their tradition. First opened to the public in 2009, the seafood market now operates from Monday through Saturday from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm. The seafood market is reputed for its fresh products and quality service and was recently voted as the best of its kind on the Forgotten Coast for two consecutive years. If you’re still not convinced that you should visit the seafood market, then perhaps enjoying the Forgotten Coast’s best selection of seafood on a fleet of boats might tickle your fancy.
The scenic location where the Mexican Gulf and the Apalachicola River meet has long been a gathering place for residents to enjoy the bounty of Mother Nature. Native Indians flourished in the region before the Spanish settlers took over. The name Apalachicola is derived from the Indian words “Apalahchi”, which means the other side, and Okli which means people. The most likely original meaning of the word Apalichola was “people on the other side of the river” Nowadays, residents deduce the meaning of Apalichola to “Land of the friendly people”. They fondly refer to it as “Apalach”.
Home to the seafood market, Apalichola has long been a center of creativity, independent thinkers, and commerce. In 1822, the first port collector was appointed by President Monroe. The current location of Apalachicola was previously a trading post and was later incorporated as West Point in 1827. Following an Act of the Legislative Council of the Territory of Florida in 1831, the region was renamed to its current name “Apalachicola”.
Before railways were developed in the Gulf States, the port of Apalachicola was the 3rd busiest port in the Mexican Gulf behind Mobile and New Orleans. The port brought a diverse population and wealth to the region, helping it to become the prosperous town it is today. The original city plan, laid with wide squares and streets was inspired by Philadelphia and is still as it was many years ago. Pioneered by the Greek immigrants, the sponge trade was a major industry in Apalachicola in the 1800s and 1900s. Apalachicola then reinvented itself as the home of wealthy lumber barons at the turn of the Twentieth Century. Unsurprisingly, seafood has always been a staple food in Apalachicola and still is to date. The city features a working waterfront for various seafood workers, including shrimpers and oyster harvesters, and is home to the largest seafood markets in the region such as the seafood market.