Switzerland is well-known as a playground for nature-lovers, outdoor sports enthusiasts, and art aficionados. People from all over the world travel there to hit the slopes, hike the trails, visit museums, and enjoy art festivals. It is also one of the best places in the world to satisfy your sweet tooth, as it boasts the highest rate of chocolate consumption in the world. Chocolate is an important part of Swiss history, culture, and cuisine, so naturally, it should be the culinary highlight of any vacation to Switzerland.
If you are heading to the big cities and want to stay close to your home base, tour companies in Zurich and Geneva offer intimate walking tours to local chocolate shops and factories. There are sweet shops everywhere, and you can easily find any kind of chocolate candy or baked good imaginable. But elsewhere in Switzerland you can do more than just sample the chocolate. You can have a full-fledged chocolate experience.
There are many chocolate factories around Switzerland that offer specialty tours. One of the biggest and most popular factories to visit is Maison Callier in Broc, a town southwest of Bern. Maison Callier is the manufacturing home of Switzerland’s oldest chocolate brand. A tour of this factory gives you an elaborate look at the history of chocolate, as well as an up-close view of the manufacturing process. There are interactive experiences throughout the tour and chocolate sampling at the end. For a true adventure, you can head to the factory tour by hopping on the Chocolate Train from Montreaux to Bloc. The train makes a stop in the picturesque town of Gruyeres, which is well-known for its cheese, on the way to its final stop at Maison Callier.
Maestrani’s Chocolarium in Flawil is a stone’s throw from Zurich and a great option for family fun. The Discovery Tour is a visual delight and includes plenty of interactive exhibits for kids of all ages. At the end of the tour you can decorate your own chocolate bar, and then visit the shop or café to fill up on chocolatey treats and buy some sweets for the road.
For more chocolate fun, try the Chocolate Adventure in the Swiss Museum of Transport in Lucerne. You will be whisked away in a car that looks like a ball of chocolate and spend 30-minutes learning about the history of the sweet treat. Adventurers on this tour are also treated to special tastings at the Lindt Boutique in the museum shop.
There are options for making your own chocolate treats on a visit to Interlaken. At the Funky Chocolate Club, visitors can book a workshop that includes all ingredients, aprons, chef’s hats, fun facts about chocolate, and professionals to walk you through the process. The Schuh restaurant in Interlaken offers the chance to participate in a chocolate show, where you can indulge in chocolate treats and make some to take home with you.
A trip to Switzerland is incomplete without indulging in its most popular of sugary treats. Regardless of the chocolate experience you choose, it is sure to satisfy the sweetest of teeth.