Monday, June 21, 2010

Chocolate Factory= Heaven for me!

Friday we decided to visit the chocolate factory in Pirmasens, Germany. I found the info on FB of all places. An American guy runs a site called Buzz off Base which details fun things to do around Germany and he has a FB page. All morning and the entire 35 minute drive there, I felt like a little kid going to, well, a candy store. I love chocolate! I can usually have a couple of bites and be done (Im not big on sugar overload), but I savor those bites. I was also eager to see how the chocolate was made and what went into the process. Unfortunately, when it came to the tour of the factory, the FB page was a bit misleading and the experience, a bit disappointing.

For starters, the address on the website was incorrect. The one listed was for the corporate offices. Thankfully, the ladies there were nice, spoke some English and were able to give us directions to the factory. J & I have a sense of humor, so this wasnt a dark cloud in our day and we werent on a schedule. When we arrived at the factory we realized that the "tour" was really a self-guided walk down one hallway. That's it. It took approximately two minutes from start to finish and we didnt get to see much. Thankfully, this is where the disappointment ended.

Above the factory (which is in the basement) is a cute little cafe and a store that sells all of the chocolates that they make. They had a large platter set out with samples. We tried everything and then started shopping! As you can see from the photos, we loaded up on some great chocolates. We filled a large bag and only paid 9 euro! I guess thats the wonderful advantage of buying straight from the source. I would recommend coming here if you love chocolate and want to buy in bulk, but dont come just for this. Plan something else to do in the area. We chose to spend the afternoon at another castle!

From there we drove another 30 minutes or so to Berwartstein Castle, built in the 12th century. If you havnet figured this out yet, J & I love castles! For him, it's all about the history. While I love the history, there is an element of fantasy and excitement when it comes to castles that I just love. i would love to be able to see what life was really like back then, and not Hollywood or anyone else's idea of what it was like.

This castle was gorgeous with tons of original features and artifacts. It has been built and rebuilt, with multiple additions throughout the centuries, so it was multi-storied and so unique. I would love to live in a castle like this! A seriously cool part was the dungeon/underground passageway. It was so dark that you had to carry a candle with you to see at all! It was also cold, wet, and muddy, but definitely worth checking out. We bought the guidebook for 3 euro at the small gift shop outside so J could get the in-depth history on the castle. They also offer a restaurant with outdoor seating. We'd just eaten so we didnt sample anything, but had we have known about it, we would have waited to eat lunch there. Parking was free and it was only 4 euro per person for entry. Overall, we had a great day trip!


Ashley said...

I think I would still be in a chocolate coma!!!

Mary and Sean said...

Looks like a great day. Don't you love how often directions are bad abroad and you have to use your wits to find someplace? I always seek out chocolate indulgence wherever I go.

Wife on the Roller Coaster said...

Sounds like an amazing day! I'm so glad you're taking advantage of living overseas and exploring. I'm so jealous!