Dip Yourself in a Chocolate Bath in Japan
Every year around Valentine’s Day, the Hakone Kowaiken Yunessun spa resort outside Tokyo pours chocolate into bathtubs so you can try being a human marshmallow. During the rest of the year, you can bathe in Japanese sake, green tea, coffee, and wine. There’s water too, but why do that?
Try Australian Chocolate So Beautiful It’s Practically Art
Shocolate creates some truly jaw-dropping seasonal chocolate creations that are all molded, painted, brushed, and polished by hand. Make sure you visit during Valentine’s Day, Easter or Christmas, when you can pick up your own chocolate Santa. If you’re feeling adventurous, try their creations like vegemite chocolate or chocolate that’s made to be eaten with cheese.
Visit the Closest Thing to Willy Wonka’s Factory in the U.K.
Cadbury World is probably as close as you’ll get to meeting Willy Wonka. The experience is still a great family treat, and worth the day trip up from London. Enjoy exhibits that show you the ancient Mayan origins of the cocoa bean, hop onto a motion simulator ride, and watch chocolatiers make treats in front of you.
Buy Chocolate that’s Literally Fit For a King in Paris
In 1800, a pharmacist to King Louis XVI opened a chocolate shop in Paris, and the shop was later made the official chocolatier of Louis XVIII, Charles X, and Louis Philippe, as well as being loved by Russian Tsars, Proust, Baudelaire, and Hugo. Their chocolates are hand-made and have a high percentage of cocoa without much sugar. You’re supposed to eat them between meals by putting them in the middle of your tongue and chewing slowly several times.
Warm Up With the Best Hot Chocolate in Belgium
Bruges has plenty of chocolate shops, but the tea room “De Proeverie” boasts some of the best hot chocolate around, served with a plate of dark chocolate sauce, hot milk, and rich whipped cream so you can blend the ingredients to your taste. It also offers pastries, scones, and cakes. Across the street is their sister shop, where the chocolate is made.
Now Visit a British Café Dedicated Entirely to Hot Chocolate
Knoops in Rye, East Sussex is probably one of a kind. It looks like an old fisherman’s hut and the owner/manager Jens Knoop takes pride and care in serving you all kinds of hot chocolate from around the world with a wide variety of flavours. The flavours don’t come from syrup; ask for fruits like orange and lemon and the owner will zest it in front of you. This café takes hot chocolate as seriously as a fine wine, while keeping it reasonably priced.
Watch the Making of Swiss Chocolate at a Factory and Museum
From London, Switzerland is just a cheap flight or high-speed train ride away. Find out what makes Swiss chocolate special straight from one of the best sources, Maestrani, a family-owned chocolate company that has been around for more than 150 years. Take a 1.5-hour public tour and learn about how the chocolate is made, how technology has changed the process, and of course, taste the products for yourself.