Do you like desserts and chocolate? Of course, you do! Who doesn’t? There are many incredible cities to visit around the world that are well-known for chocolate. Intrigued?
You should just go ahead and pack your bags, because we are about to introduce you to 5 of the sweetest chocolate cities in the world – a dream come true for a sweet tooth! Prepare yourself for the chocolate overload. These cities feature some of the best chocolate events, factories to tour and desserts to try. Bon appetite!
This list was prepared in collaboration with our friends at Travel Ticker, who can help you search for and book hotel rooms anywhere your sweet tooth might lead you.
5. Brussels, Belgium
It is not surprising to learn that Brussels is often called the world’s chocolate capital. In the heart of the city, in the Great Square, chocolate is sold almost everywhere.
Belgian chocolate is truly one of the most valued in the world. Many towns have their chocolate-making traditions and recipes, but Belgian chocolate is one of the most delicious, and, well, most delightful as well. The stats say it all. In Belgium, there are over two thousand chocolate shops and 16 chocolate museums. It is estimated that each Belgian eats around 8 kilograms of chocolate a year.
In Brussels, the Cocoa and Chocolate Museum (Musee du Caco et du Chocolat) introduces visitors to the chocolate-making process and the history of chocolate. There is also the Bruges Chocolate Festival held every year, which brings together the most famous producers of the delicacy from the whole of Belgium.
4. Oaxaca, Mexico
Oaxaca is known as the city of chocolate and culinary capital of Mexico. Hundreds of years ago in this town is where the incredibly popular hot cocoa drink, Mexican Hot Chocolate, originated. Hot chocolate drinks produced in ancient times were quite savory, and tasted a lot like strong modern coffee.
Cacao, which is traditionally produced in this city, is often spiced up with cinnamon and served with some delicious almonds. Moreover, every street in Oaxaca has something to do with chocolate. Some streets brew cacao; some sell chocolate bars while others sell an array of chocolate products you bet you would love to eat.
In general, chocolate in Mexico has always been very special, even before the arrival of European colonist in the 15th century. In fact, Cocoa has been growing for about three thousand years in Latin America, and the locals have mastered the art of making something incredible from it.
To demonstrate chocolate’s incredible value to the Aztecs, it was often used for medicinal purposes and cocoa beans were even once used as currency because of its high value.
3. Cologne, Germany
You may have heard, Germany offers some delicious chocolate possibilities too! Germany actually ranks near the top of the list of nations that consumes the most chocolate per year, with annual consumption per capita of around 17.4 pounds.
Germany’s capital of chocolate is Cologne, which you may be surprised to hear is famous not only for the country’s largest Gothic cathedral, but also for producing some high-quality chocolate. In Cologne, we will find one of the biggest chocolate makers in the country – the Stollwerck chocolate factory, which produces many brands of luxury chocolate.
Also, in the city is the Imhoff-Stollwerck Museum, better known as the Chocolate Museum, where you can learn the three-thousand-year-old history of chocolate, and be introduced to the confectionery process, as well.
2. Paris, France
The French like to brag that the chocolate they produce is the best. While that claim is certainly lofty, in Paris alone there are over 300 chocolate shops. Saint-Germain-des Prés is Paris’ ground-zero of chocolate, home to a few dozen world-class chocolatiers. It’s heaven for chocolate lovers.
Perhaps the most famous chocolate event in the world is the traditional La Salon de Chocolat (Chocolate Festival) in Paris, which has taken place in late October since 1993. Chocolate produces from all over the world come to display and offer their chocolate for tasting during the festival. Gaze your eyes upon masterpieces of chocolate, get to know with the most recent trends in chocolate fashion and also see who was wins the awards for the best chocolate production!
Finally, we come to the chocolaty-est of all destinations in the world – Switzerland. The whole country is one big dream come true for chocolate fans. It’s impossible to pick just one city. The Swiss each eat around 20 pounds of chocolate per year! In total, there are 18 chocolate companies around the country.
This delicious delicacy is considered as one of this Alpine country’s symbols. In addition, the Swiss are proud inventors of milk chocolate, which has fundamentally changed the concept of chocolate. According to the locals, Switzerland’s chocolate success lies in its quality. Swiss chocolate-making standards adhere to rigorous quality standards, which in turn produces undeniably great chocolate that cannot be surpassed.
Most manufacturers offer a tour at their factory so that you can get acquainted with the production process. They even have a Swiss chocolate train route, which starts in Montreux and meanders through the beautiful countryside until it arrives in Broc at the Maison Cailler Chocolate Factory.
Have you ever traveled somewhere specifically to taste and enjoy chocolate? Tell us about it in the comments. We’re always excited to hear about your food journeys around the world.
Laura Lynch, creator and writer of Savored Journeys, is an avid world traveler, certified wine expert, and international food specialist. She has written about travel and food for over 20 years and has visited 70+ countries.