Lærdal became a place for trade early on due to all the travel between east and west that passed through the village. The first markets took place in 1596 and lasted for a whole eight days; in 1836 new regulations were put into place that forced the markets to be limited to four days. The markets in Lærdal attracted both towns-men as well as the rich farmers, and they all kept their own boathouses or sheds for their goods. The markets offered for sale local food as well as other necessities.
A royal resolution saw the original markets come to their conclusion in 1876. Local enthusiasts restarted the tradition of the markets in 1982, and the markets now take place twice yearly, every year. The Lærdal Markets take place during the third weekend of June and the Autumn Markets take place as September goes into October. Both markets still take place in the idyllic wooden house setting of the centre of the municipality, Lærdalsøyri. It has become an important meeting place in Sogn for local producers, buyers and not to mention the people of Lærdal. Visitors can shop and taste local produce as well as enjoy exhibitions and a varied scope of entertainment from the stage.
2014 saw a Christmas market organised at Øyri in Lærdal for the very first time.