If you’re regretting that Easter bunnies only arrive once a year, it’s the perfect time to consider some chocolate-themed travel (before egg overload puts you off).
I’ve actually managed to line mine up already with a trip to St Lucia planned next month, and May’s part of the Take12Trips challenge. Yes, that’s right, the Caribbean island is home to chocolate plantations, Hotel Chocolat’s Boucan hotel and even a chocolate trail.
And of course, there’s always Belgium a short Eurostar trip away. But you needn’t even venture that far afield…
If you haven’t spent a weekend break in a chocolate-themed hotel, you can’t call yourself a true chocolate lover. The Chocolate Hotel in Bournemouth has 15 chocolate-themed rooms that can even come with chocolate fountains, plus they can arrange kids’ chocolate parties.
There’s chocolateries and then there’s Choccywoccydoodah, with locations in central London and its new Brighton site. The stores’ bar du chocolat is basically sugar-coated heaven for chocolate lovers. From the fantastical cakes to truffles, hot chocolate and chocolate figurines, it’s grown-up indulgence that’s just as good for kids.
Take a Chocolate Ecstasy walking tour with ‘certified chocoholic’ expert guides as they point out the capital’s best chocolate stores and experiences as you wander the city’s side streets and alleys. Although they’re aimed at adults, the company says accompanied children are welcome and there’s no more than 15 minutes’ walking between stops. Oh, and there’s discounts if you’re not full at the end.
Never be short of chocolate again – learn how to make your own. Artisan chocolatier Jane Williams, who’s created chocolates for the Queen, runs masterclasses at her studios so expect expert tips and creations including strawberry and Champagne truffles or decorated heart-shaped chocolate lollipops. Best for adults, but for other chocolate courses check out suggestions on Chocolate Tourism.
If you’ve grown up (or are growing up) in the UK, Cadbury is likely to be part of your heritage and childhood memories. The Cadbury World tour traces chocolate’s history and arrival to Europe, plus seeing liquid chocolate, watching chocolatiers at work and chasing a giant Crème Egg… There’s also the Bourneville Experience, where you can design your own packaging.
Or if you’re in Wales, go behind the scenes on a tour of Michton Chocolate Factory in Swansea – no under-threes.
And if it’s the bunnies you prefer, there’s always Japan’s rabbit cafes…
Image: Jonathan Reyes/Flickr