If you are a chocoholic, then Umbria is the place to be each year in October when the region hosts Eurochocolate, an annual chocolate festival that takes place in Perugia, the region’s capital. This chocolate festival is the most popular chocolate festival in Europe and has been held since 1993. It is also one of the largest chocolate festivals in Europe as it draws nearly one million folks, both tourists and Italian natives each and every year over the nine days the festival runs. Eurochocolate is located in the streets around the historical center, and the streets are lined with stands hosted by chocolate companies from all across Italy as well as a few others from outside the country. Italy’s most well-known chocolate company Perugina (which now belongs to Nestlé), and is probably most famous for their delicious Baci chocolates, really makes it’s presence known at this festival, and is represented along with a number of other famous brands such as Lindt and Caffarel. Eurochocolate offers many options for any chocolate lover including such items as chocolate covered bananas and apples, chocolate kebabs, thick hot chocolate, artisan chocolates, chocolate liqueur, chocolate molds, and chocolate bricks.
As well as chocolate items of every description for sale in over 700 stalls throughout the city center, Eurochocolate offers a variety of activities scheduled over the nine days including chocolate art displays, experimental chocolate tastings, cooking classes, street performances, chocolate sculpting, and of course the ever popular Eurochocolate Awards. There is even an opportunity to make a chocolate day spa appointment, or stay at the chocolate hotel while visiting Perugia. In 2003, the largest chocolate bar in the world was constructed during this festival, measuring 7 meters in length, two meters high and made with 5980 kilograms of dark chocolate and thousands of hazelnuts.
We headed down to Eurochocolate one morning this past week, hoping to beat the crowds by going early in the day, and had an enjoyable morning browsing through the hundreds of stands selling all things chocolate, sipping thick rich hot chocolate, and soaking up the festival atmosphere. By early afternoon the center of Perugia was crowded with people enjoying a perfect fall day at the festival and even all the outdoor cafes and restaurants were packed with folks soaking up the sunshine. As well as the legitimate Eurochoclate stands and activities there were also many street performers, craft stands, and musicians lining the main street which really added to the feeling Perugia was throwing a big party. I thoroughly enjoyed my visit to Eurochocolate this year, but would recommend that if you do not like crowds that you head there early in the day. The stalls open at 10am and at that time you can comfortably walk through the streets and purchase your favorite chocolate treats. If you love chocolate and happen to be in Italy in the fall, this is a great festival to visit although I must say that even though I personally enjoy good chocolate as much as anyone, I think I had enough chocolate in one morning to last me at least until Christmas!
The Streets In The Historical Center of Perugia are Lined With Hundreds of Stands Hosted By Chocolate Companies Selling Everything Chocolate
One Store Selling Pants For Those Who Overindulge At EuroChocolate!
Guys Promoting Chocolate Ravioli
Amazing Window Display Of Cocoa Bean Confections At Pasticceria Sandri
Fountain In Main Piazza In Perugia
They Even Sold Chocolate Treats For Dogs!
After A Tiring Stroll Through The Streets Folks Taking A Break On The Steps Of The Duomo
Chocolate Kebab ~ Layers Of Dark And Milk Chocolate Shaved Onto Sweet Bread