Swiss chocolate is famous all over the world. In Switzerland there are several chocolate factories that you can visit. These include well-known names such as Lindt, Camille Bloch, Maestrani and Cailler. In all factories with a visitor center you have the opportunity to taste chocolate and buy it at the end in the store at sometimes attractive prices.
Anyone who loves chocolate cannot avoid a visit to the Chocolarium. Munz and Minor's popular happiness factory invites you on a sweet journey in search of happiness. The Chocolarium offers an interactive experience tour, insight into live production and various chocolate courses
In the Swiss Chocolate Adventure theme world at the Museum of Transport in Lucerne, you can learn all about chocolate - and taste it yourself.
With the Swiss Travel Pass Flex you have free travel throughout Switzerland by boat, bus or train. You travel wherever you want, on 3, 4, 6, 8 or 15 freely selectable travel days within a month.
Enjoy the famous Swiss pleasure trio consisting of wine, raclette and chocolate. Experience the beautiful landscape of the Bündner Herrschaft in Heidiland.
Enjoy a tasting of typical Swiss chocolate while exploring the picturesque city of Zurich on this 90-minute E-TukTuk tour.
Together with an experienced guide, you will spend a day exploring the city of Zurich, the Rhine Falls, the charming town of Stein am Rhein and the Lindt Home of Chocolate. You won't forget this day in a hurry.
Certain things go hand in hand.
Laurel and Hardy. Timon and Pumbaa. Summer and ice cream.
The inseparable pair we are looking at in this case has nothing to do with overweight warthogs or clumsy comedians, but with the world-famous symbiosis "Switzerland and chocolate".
It is no secret that we love the sweet temptation. After all, chocolate consumption by the Swiss ranks first in Europe. In 2019, Mr. and Mrs. Switzerland consumed a remarkable 10.4 kg of chocolate per person, while our neighbors in Germany came in second with 8.8 kg.
Whether this is a podium position to be proud of remains to be seen. The fact is, however, that Switzerland is famous for its chocolate. And this is not least because the chocolatiers at Lindt invented milk chocolate through a mishap in 1879.
As you can imagine, tons of chocolate is made in Switzerland every day. To the delight of all sweets lovers, there are several chocolate factories that open their doors to visitors. So if you want to catch a glimpse behind the scenes of one of Switzerland's most important flagships, you've come to the right place.
The person behind this famous chocolate brand is Aquilino Maestrani. the ambitious entrepreneur and inventor founded the company in 1852 and thus made his mark on Swiss chocolate history. The Maestrani company also owns the Munz and Minor brands, which are now an integral part of every supermarket in Switzerland.
Today, around 3,500 tons of Maestrani products are manufactured annually, which is equivalent to the weight of around 600 adult African elephants. Of these, 35% leave Switzerland for export, while the remaining 65% are sold in Switzerland.
So, chocolate. Not elephants 🙂
The Maestrani range includes classics such as the delicious "Munz-Prügeli", the chemical and sticky Munz banana - which evokes either positive or negative childhood memories for every Swiss person - the Minor chocolate sticks often served with coffee and the cute lucky beetles.
However, Maestrani does not only produce chocolate. It also produces caramel bars, fruit jelly creations and marzipan mice.
At the Chocolarium, everything revolves around the question of how happiness ends up in chocolate. After all, that's the burning question, isn't it?
An interactive trail takes you for about an hour through the history of Swiss chocolate and the house of Maestrani, past tasting opportunities in the form of chocolate fountains or cocoa nibs bowls, purely into the production world to a 100-meter-long chocolate machine and finally into the store, where you will find an abundance of Maestrani creations.
In the show confectionery, you'll have the chance to decorate your own chocolate bar and take it home as a souvenir. If your stomach still allows it after this culinary excursion, the Schoggi Café awaits you at the end with further offers.
|Decorate your own chocolate
|children (6-16 years)
|retirees, students, apprentices
|families (2 adults, 3 children)
|10 per chocolate
If, in addition to the chocolate factory, you are considering a visit to the Show Dairy in Stein, the Walter Zoo in Gossau or the Tree Top Trail in the Neckertal Valley, the Combi-Ticket with a price reduction in the Chocolarium is the perfect choice for you.
The Chocolarium is located in Flawil in the canton of St. Gallen. By car, you can reach the chocolate factory via the A1 highway and the Oberbühren exit. To reach the Chocolarium by public transport, take the train to Flawil or Uzwil and change to the post bus to the "Maestrani" stop.
Of all the Swiss chocolate brands, Lindt is the one most likely to be found in the farthest corners of the globe. There is hardly a supermarket that does not offer a Lindt product in some form. Not to mention the airports.
The name behind the world-famous Lindor balls and golden chocolate bunnies has its origins in the late 19th century. Initially known as Lindt & Sprüngli, production started in 1899 in Kilchberg on Lake Zurich.
Originally, chocolate was a rather bitter and inedible affair. But by the happy coincidence that the conching machine was not switched off one Friday afternoon at the Lindt company in 1875 and the bitter mass continued to be stirred without interruption until Monday, the sweet and creamy milk chocolate that continues to seduce us today was born.
Hurray for forgetfulness!
The Home of Chocolate was opened in the midst of the pandemic in September 2020. It is no exaggeration to say that it is a project of superlatives. In one of the world's largest chocolate fountains, 1,500 kg of chocolate circulate at a height of over nine meters and at 500 m², the Lindt store in the Home of Chocolate is the largest of its kind.
A museum explains everything about the history of chocolate and the origins of its ingredients before moving on to the infamous tasting hall. There, three chocolate fountains are available for free service. If there's one room you won't want to leave in a hurry, it's this one.
Or perhaps the buffet that follows, where you can eat your fill of various types of Lindor balls to your heart's content?
Afterwards, you will be given an insight into Lindt's testing facility, where new creations and treats are constantly being worked on. This is the second last step before you can redeem your admission ticket for a surprise and the tour comes to an end.
|Admission to Chocolate World
|Course creative with all senses
|Course forming and refining
|children (8-15 years)
|pensioners (AHV,IV), students, apprentices
Like the chocolate factory that opened in 1899, the Home of Chocolate is located in Kilchberg on the southern shore of Lake Zurich
We recommend that you use public transportation to get there, as the location is perfectly integrated into the transportation network of the Zurich region. There are regular buses and trains to and from Zurich main station
In Switzerland, the names Ragusa and Torino are not primarily associated with southern cities, but with creamy chocolate.
Because of the melodious name, chocolatier Camille Bloch named his hazelnut chocolate creation in 1942 after the city of Ragusa, now Dubrovnik in Croatia. With Torino chocolate, a second delicacy was added in 1950, which still turns heads all over Switzerland today.
Chocolats Camille Bloch is a Swiss family business founded in Bern in 1929. Today, the company is run by the third generation and new creations are constantly coming onto the market.
With an annual production volume of 3,700 tons, Camille Bloch weighs about 15 adult elephants more than Maestrani. Comparatively little of this is exported. Only 20% ends up abroad.
We prefer to eat the rest ourselves.
The factory where the Ragusa and Torino delicacies are made cannot be visited directly. However, Camille Bloch has built a visitor center right next to the chocolate factory, where you can see the production process up close.
After a short excursion through the history of Camille Bloch and Swiss chocolate after the First World War, the tour takes you past two chocolate fountains and two snacking pillars with nuts and cocoa beans. However, we recommend that you hold back a little in this area, as you will regret it by the time you reach the demonstration areas.
In the next section of the visitor center, two chocolatiers will show you step by step how the Ragusa and Torino chocolate bars are made. Afterwards, of course, you can help yourself as you please and no one will tell you that your sugar level has been reached for the day.
Simply heavenly circumstances.
Finally, you can treat yourself to more sugar bombs in the café and store or even create your own personalized Ragusa gift box. If you want to try your hand at being a chocolatier yourself, you can do so in one of the workshops.
|Admission World of Experience
|children (6-16 years)
|pensioners (AHV,IV), students
Chez Camille Bloch is located in Courtelary, a village in the Bernese Jura. By car you can reach Courtelary in 20 min from Biel and La Chaux-de-Fonds or in 60 min from Bern and Fribourg. By train you can easily reach Courtelary via Biel or La Chaux-de-Fonds, followed by a five-minute walk
Cailler is the oldest chocolate brand in Switzerland and originated in Vevey on Lake Geneva. Cailler has been shaping the Swiss chocolate landscape since 1819 and it's hard to imagine any supermarket without this name.
At the end of the 19th century, the new site in Gruyère - which you've probably heard of in connection with a certain Swiss cheese - was put into operation. For over 100 years, production of the endlessly varied Cailler range has taken place in this factory.
What you may not have known is that Cailler merged with Nestlé in 1929. Also part of this empire are common names like Frigor and Fémina.
La Maison Cailler is Cailler's visitor center, which was officially opened in 2010. In its lovingly decorated museum, you are guided through the history of Swiss chocolate - starting with the cocoa beans in the jungle and ending with the Swiss cows.
As a little warning, the first few minutes of the tour are somewhat reminiscent of a ghost train and it is not uncommon for children to start crying in the gloomy surroundings. The Aztecs in the early days of chocolate were not always peaceful..
After this first part, however, things become cheerful again and by the time you reach the creatively designed nibbling stations, the initial unpleasantness is a thing of the past. Before you reach the actual tasting hall with a generous selection of Cailler chocolates, you are led past a machine that allows you to follow the entire production line of a Cailler chocolate bar.
In the café and store at the end of the tour, you can round off your visit with culinary delights and pick up a souvenir or two along the way.
Admission to la Maison Cailler costs CHF 17 for adults. In various workshops you can try yourself as a chocolatier and take your own creation home
|Admission Maison Cailler
|children (6-15 years)
|pensioners (AHV,IV), students
La Maison Cailler is located in Broc, a village in the canton of Fribourg near Lake Gruyère. By train you can reach the station Broc Fabrique via Fribourg and Bulle. If you arrive by car, the A12 freeway between Bern and Lausanne is the right way via the Bulle exit.
Who doesn't know it...?
The delicious broken chocolate with nuts, cornflakes, caramel pieces, smarties, raisins, coconut chips and many other creative ingredients. Hardly any shop window is as attractive as that of a Läderach store. Be it at the airport, on Bahnhofstrasse in Zurich or on Marktplatz in St. Gallen.
But pralines, chocolate-covered popcorn or the legendary "MiniMousses" are also part of this Swiss chocolatier's specialties.
The Glarus-based family business was founded in 1962 and has had an impressive career. Läderach is now represented all over the world with over 80 branches in 15 countries. And the trend is upwards. A highlight in Läderach's history was certainly the year 2018, when Elias Läderach won the title of "World Chocolate Master" at the Chocolate World Championship.
By the way, the masterpiece of the Chocolate Master can be seen in the House of Läderach. And yes, it is indeed made of chocolate, even if it looks more like a glass sculpture.
Like the Lindt Home of Chocolate, the House of Läderach opened its doors in fall 2020. Pandemic or not.
When you enter the visitor center, you are immediately greeted by the sweet smell of chocolate and given a piece of chocolate and a porcelain spoon as a ticket. You can choose between various tours or take the tour on your own.
A favorite of many visitors, apart from the three-part chocolate fountain of course, is the direct insight into production. The last part of a guided tour leads into the production hall where the chocolate is made. However, it is not used here. At Läderach, all creations are made by hand, which is why you can "only" observe the liquid chocolate production process here.
Speaking of liquid chocolate.
The House of Läderach has a chocolate fountain from which white, light brown and dark chocolate flows simultaneously. This is where your porcelain spoon from the entrance comes into its own and you can taste your way through the sweet streams to your heart's content.
At the House of Läderach, you have several options. A simple, self-guided tour of the chocolate museum costs CHF 5. The ticket is also a CHF 5 voucher for the chocolate store. Please note that this short tour does not give you an insight into the production. For the visit you can calculate about 30 min.
The guided tours cost between 40 CHF and 60 CHF.
The House of Läderach is located in Bilten in the canton of Glarus. By train you travel from Zurich, Chur or St. Gallen to Ziegelbrücke and change there to the bus to Bilten. By car you reach your destination via the A3 between Zurich and Chur via the Bilten exit.
In addition to all the big names in the Swiss chocolate landscape, there are some smaller, less familiar players that aren't any less noteworthy. One of these is undoubtedly the Aeschbach manufactory, a family business that was founded in Zug in 1972.
One product from the house of Aeschbach that is likely to be familiar to every Swiss is the Schokoladentaler. Also known as "Schoggitaler". It is often sold by primary school students to raise money for a good cause.
Apart from the Schoggitaler, Aeschbach produces a variety of chocolates, chocolate bars, seasonal creations and other house specialties.
In Aeschbach's ChocoWelt, as the name suggests, you can immerse yourself in the world of chocolate. During the interactive tour, you will learn all about the history of chocolate and the production of Aeschbacher's house specialties
Of course, the journey of the cocoa bean with all its tasting possibilities is not to be missed. And the contact with the chocolatiers, who are happy to answer questions and hand out samples, is not neglected on the tour.
After the tour, you can stock up on the specialties of the Aeschbach Chocolatiers in the store and café.
Admission to Aeschbach's ChocoWelt costs CHF 15 for adults. As with Läderach, this price includes a voucher of 5.- CHF which can be redeemed in the café or in the store. For an additional CHF 10, you can decorate your own 200 g chocolate bar as part of ChocoWelt Plus and take it home as a souvenir.
|Admission to ChocoWelt
|ChocoWeltPlus (200g bar you create yourself)
|children (6-16 years)
Aeschbach's ChocoWelt is located in Root near Lucerne. By train from Lucerne, you can reach the "Root D4" stop in just ten minutes. By car, take the A14 freeway between Lucerne and Zurich and exit at Gisikon-Root
For over 90 years, Chocolat Stella, located in Kreuzlingen on Lake Constance, has been producing high-quality chocolate. The extensive assortment leaves nothing to be desired, even for special requirements. So you can find at Chocolate Stella, among other things, vegan, lactose-free, organic, fair trade and even sugar-free chocolate. Stella also produces kosher and halal chocolate.
At Chocolat Stella, companies and private labels can create and have their own chocolate produced. Thus, promotional gifts, bars, semi-finished products, truffles or pre-packaged chocolates are produced here. The company exports to over 50 countries worldwide.
In three different factory stores in Giubiasco, Bellinzona and Kreuzlingen you can try their specialties directly from production. In the production plant in Giubiasco it is even possible to take part in a guided tour. This includes a tour of the production facility and a tasting session.
You can visit the factory stores and the Chocolat Café in Kreuzlingen for free. If you are interested in a guided tour in Giubiasco, you will have the opportunity to do so Monday through Friday in the morning and afternoon for about one hour.
The guided tour must be booked at least three weeks in advance and costs 5 CHF for adults, while children pay 3 CHF.
The headquarters of Chocolat Stella is in Kreuzlingen on Lake Constance. Here you will find a factory store and Café Stella.
In Ticino there are two other factory stores - one in Bellinzona and one in Giubiasco.
Watching the production of chocolate is one thing. But becoming active yourself and creating your own chocolate bar is something completely different. At the Funky Chocolate Club in Interlaken you have the opportunity to do just that.
The Funky Chocolate Club has been around since November 2014, and since then chocolate lovers from all over the world have been meeting here to make their own chocolate under professional guidance. In a workshop, you'll be equipped with an apron, chef's hat, and all sorts of ingredients you'll need to decorate your chocolate bars.
During the workshop, a professional chocolatier will explain to you how to temper chocolate properly and what it takes to make a perfect bar of chocolate. Afterwards, you'll get to work and decorate your chocolate bars as you please. Of course, you can eat as much as you like. At the end of the workshop, you take your creation home with you and can show off everywhere what you've learned. However, the chocolate must first cool for at least an hour before you can take it home.
The workshop at the Funky Chocolate Club costs CHF 69 for adults. Children between the ages of 4 and 14 pay CHF 59. Workshops are held four times a day in English and last approximately one hour.
The Funky Chocolate Club is located in the heart of Interlaken at Postgasse 10. You can reach it on foot from the Interlaken West train station in about 5 minutes.
At the Swiss Museum of Transport in Lucerne, you can not only admire vehicles of all kinds or planets, but also dive into the world of chocolate
The state-of-the-art themed world of chocolate at the Swiss Chocolate Adventure combines fun with learning. The multimedia tour through the world of chocolate begins in a trolley that takes you through ten different rooms. Here you will learn in an entertaining way where chocolate comes from, how cocoa is grown, how the beans get to Europe and how they are processed into the final product there.
At the end of the tour, a tasting of various fine chocolates awaits you. In the Lindt Boutique, you can not only watch a professional at work three times a day and enjoy his creations right away, but also decorate your own chocolate with an individual inscription.
|Admission Swiss Chocolate Adventure
|children (6-15 years)
The Swiss Chocolate Adventure is located in the Swiss Museum of Transport in Lucerne. You can reach it by public transport (bus, train or boat) or by car.
Besides all the chocolate factories with visitor centers and guided tours, there are numerous smaller chocolate manufactories. Below we list some candites you can visit.
In Lausanne and Yverdon-les-Bains you will find l'Espace Chocolat Confiserie Moret with up to 20 delicious and unique chocolate bars. But also chocolates, confections and other delicacies await you here. The products are completely made and decorated on site. And of course, there's plenty to snack on while you choose your favorite temptation
As the name suggests, Schoggi.ch has a rich online store. However, you can also visit their factory store directly on site in Kempttal. Here you can expect specialties made of chocolate for upscale specialty stores at home and abroad. The family business has been producing fresh products for more than 70 years and has a high quality due to its great experience
During an exciting chocolate safari through the Garçoa chocolate factory in Zurich, you can discover the production process from cocoa bean to finished bar. You will learn exciting facts about cocoa and have the opportunity to snack in between. A safari takes about 60 to 90 minutes and costs CHF 20 for adults. Afterwards, you can stock up on your favorite chocolates in the store.
In the heart of Lucerne, Max Chocolatier awaits its guests with various tastings. Here you will find chocolates, chocolate bars, dragées, tasting boxes and many other products in the store
For a guided tasting or a chocolate workshop, pre-registration is necessary. During 45 to 90 minutes you will experience the craft up close and enjoy the view of the Lucerne lake basin. A visit to Max Chocolatier is also perfect as a team event
Seasonal promotions and special offers await you at Schoggihüsli in Hinwil. The factory store is located right next to the HALBA production facility. You can take a look inside the factory in the video below. Otherwise, we recommend that you visit the store directly and benefit from the large selection of chocolate.
Villars is another big name that you'll encounter more often in Swiss supermarkets. Their assortment is gigantic and also includes more special creations such as sugar-free chocolate. The Villars store is located in Fribourg. Here you will find the chocolate boutique with a large selection of products and a cozy café
You might be wondering why one of the biggest names in the chocolate landscape - which can easily hold a candle to Lindor balls in terms of fame - is missing from this list.
That's a fair question. In fact, it's not possible to get to know Toblerone better and visit a production facility. So you'll have to make do with the assortment in supermarkets and at almost every airport in the world.
However, this should not be a big deal, as you will be well prepared for the next rainy day or your next bout of chocolate cravings with the chocolate factories and manufactories described here. With your visit you will also help Switzerland to defend its podium position of the "Chocolate Monsters of Europe". 🙂