Rome is an amazing city, but sometimes it’s nice to get outside the city for a weekend to experience some of the other unique places in Italy. Recently, I went on a day trip to the famous Eurochocolate festival in Perugia, the capital city of the Umbria region!
To be honest, I expected to enjoy myself for about an hour or two before leaving to see some other sights in Perugia. Looking back, I don’t know how I could have been such a fool. This festival was massive, with people crowding the streets, vendors selling chocolate goods and offering free samples, performances, and people making chocolate sculptures right in the middle of the street. It was easy to spend the entire day there, even leaving me feeling like I wouldn’t have minded coming back the following weekend.
Some highlights of my trip:
- Trying a cupcake made out of potato with parmesan frosting topped with black truffle (the fungus kind, of course, not chocolate!) Honestly, it was a bit on the salty side, but it was surprisingly really delicious!
- Tasting various different types of chocolate.
- Watching artists sculpt things out of nothing but chocolate.
- Getting hit in the head by a flying chunk of chocolate from someone making a sculpture! Seriously, when do you get to have that experience?
- Trying some amazing Italian hot chocolate!
- Going on a scavenger hunt with our Chocolate Cards to find all of the free samples at the festival.
- Tasting chocolate liquor for the first time (OK, I did not care for this, but it was still fun to try.)
- Trying chocolate pasta.
- Finding unique souvenirs to bring home to the United States!
I do regret not having enough time to visit anywhere else in Perugia (especially the National Gallery of Umbria), but I am really glad to have been able to experience the food culture and talent of Perugia. Although I came to Italy with far more interest in the art and history, falling in love with the food and flavors of Italy was probably inevitable. As I’ve become more and more immersed in the culture of Italy, I’ve come to learn that food and cooking is a source of pride for many of the people here and it really shows – I’ve had more good food in a month and a half than I’ve probably had in my entire life and that’s not even an exaggeration. Eurochocolate is a must-see event for anyone who loves chocolate and experiencing different kinds of foods (especially if you’re the type of person who likes to check out unusual foods).
A word of advice, though: pay the five euro and just take the chocolate train at the station. We decided to walk to the festival and the entire way was uphill – the entire city is nothing but hills and you will regret rejecting that cute little train within the first five minutes of walking.
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<p>My name is Charlotte and I'm a senior at Penn State studying Human Development and Sociology. I like traveling, baking, k-pop, rabbits, and collecting scrunchies!</p>