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6 Musts For Chocolate Lovers In Bruges
Bruges is renowned for its picturesque canals, medieval architecture, and rich cultural heritage. But for some visitors, the main reason to visit Bruges is its delicious Belgian chocolate. This quaint city is known for its chocolate tradition and offers a wide range of chocolate shops and other places that you - as a chocolate lover (to be) - need to visit.
From traditional Belgian pralines to more unusual flavours, there’s something to suit every chocolate lover’s taste. Save this article to your favourites, and you’re set!
Don’t know where to start or what to do in Bruges when it comes to chocolate? Here are six of the best chocolate shops and other places evolving around chocolate in Bruges to visit:
1. Get to know more about Belgian chocolate at the Choco-Story chocolate museum
The Choco-Story Museum is a must-visit attraction to learn more about the history of (Belgian) chocolate. This museum offers visitors a unique look into the history of chocolate, from the origins of cocoa in Meso-America to how chocolate is made today. The museum features interactive exhibits, films and artefacts to illustrate how cocoa beans were first discovered and how chocolate was introduced to Europe. You’ll learn how it was first made and how the chocolate industry developed over the centuries. At the end of the visit, there’s a praline-making demonstration. And - of course - the possibility of indulging in one that’s been freshly made.
2. Try some of the tastiest pralines at Olivier’s Chocolate Shop & Bar
A stones-throw from the Market Square, in a buzzing street full of restaurants and shops, you’ll find Olivier’s. First called Chocolaterie De Ceuninck, Olivier realised that tourists walking into his chocolate shop - frequented by the locals - might struggle to find their way back. Olivier’s Chocolate Shop & Bar was born.
Olivier’s dad and brother make most of the pralines. But when Ollie finds a moment to help, he’s not afraid to get his hand dirty. The chocolates are classically shaped, yet the fillings are classic and contemporary: lemon meringue, cookie crumble & caramel, speculoos* and the Swan of Bruges are among our favourites.
*Outside of Belgium, known as ‘Biscoff’.
3. Have a hot chocolate at The Old Chocolate House
Chocolate shop on the ground floor. Upstairs is where you really want to be. Officially called the tea room: this is hot chocolate heaven. On the menu, you’ll find a range of dark, milk and even white chocolate for your hot chocolate. When you’ve made your choice, you’ll get a big mug of steaming hot milk, a whisk and… the chocolate callets of your choice.
Add as many as you want and enjoy a cup of liquid love.
On busy days there might be a line to enter chocolate heaven.
4. Go crazy at The Chocolate Line
This is a must-visit destination for chocolate lovers looking for something different. Run by chocolate artist Dominique Persoone, this shop is known for its innovative and unique chocolate products. Get a bar and write your own message on it, add Chocolate Pills to your daily dose of vitamins or get a Chocolate Shooter. Persoone designed this shooter when Ron Wood and Charlie Watts of the Rolling Stones asked him to organise their birthday party. Dominique had them sniff cocoa, and now you can do so too.
Besides the weird stuff, you’ll also find pralines, albeit some with exotic flavours such as wasabi and curry.
A visit to the Chocolate Line will be a memorable experience and a great way to explore a different side of the chocolate culture in Bruges.
5. Buy pralines for your friends at Chocolaterie De Burg
Located in the political heart of Bruges, stopping at Chocolaterie De Burg is a no-brainer for anyone that wants to bring back chocolates.
Marleen has been running this shop for over 20 years, and what makes her unique is that she sells all the different qualities you can find in Bruges in one shop. In the cabinet outdoors, you’ll find the factory-made chocolate that many of the chocolate shops in Bruges sell as ‘handmade’ chocolates at 50 euros a kilo. However, Marleen keeps it in the original boxes, puts 4 together with a lovely ribbon, and you only pay 10 euros a kilo.
Inside you will find quality tin gift boxes, hot chocolate sticks, and, behind the counter, the good pralines made by her cousin and brother.
6. Make your own chocolates during the Belgian Chocolate Workshop in Bruges
Doing a chocolate workshop is a unique experience that allows you, after all the tasting, to make some chocolates yourself. The workshop guides you through the process of tempering the chocolate to moulding and decorating your own pralines and mendiants (chocolate disks with nuts and dried fruits).
The workshop is led by experienced chocolatiers who share their expertise and passion for the art of chocolate-making. Best of all: you can take home your own creations as a sweet reminder of your visit to Bruges.
Definitely going to judge all future tours against this one. Pascal was so great and you could feel his love for the city in the tour. We had so much fun with this tour and definitely walked away feeling like we’d gotten the best of Brugge.
We had a wonderful tour with Edward! He was so knowledgeable and friendly and we really got to know the city from a local perspective.
We had a great walking tour with Ray. It was very informative and hit all the must see spots. Ray was a super knowledgeable and fun guy to walk with. I would definitely recommend this to anyone traveling to Bruges.
What does it mean? A free tour?
It means that it's a Pay What You Want tour. At the end of the tour, you decide what the tour is worth to you and whether you want to reward the guide accordingly (and according to your budget). That way everyone can enjoy a tour.
Do the tours run when it rains?
Yes they do! If we were affraid of a little rain that half of the time we'd have to cancel our tours. Instead we adapt! With some light rain: we try to fix an umbrella for the participants that forgot their own, walk faster and relax once we've found shelter again. With heavy rain: we make sure everyone is properly dressed for bad weather or divert into buildings.
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Meet our guides
The founder and president of Ambassadors. Originally Dutch, but fell in love with Bruges and storytelling.
School Principal, educator, proud Guest House owner, storyteller & secretary of Ambassadors.
Always telling interesting stories whether he's on tour or running his own bar:
't Verdriet van België.
Professional entertainer, proud dad and one of the first free tour guides in Bruges.
Never a boring teacher. That's why his student are so happy with him. And so will you.
Running his own pop-up cocktail bar, works in a cookie factory and lives in a monastery.
Born in Venezuela, maried in Belgium and in love with Bruges. Prepare for a rapid firing stories in Spanish.