Hershey’s Chocolate World as an Adult

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Not sure why, but I really wanted to go to Hershey’s Chocolate World – a fake factory tour and outlet shop at their operations in Hershey, PA. I’d been once right out of college (because I’d wanted to visit a town that had streetlights that looked like Hershey kisses) and I had vague memories of enjoying it.

So after our fun experience at What If… in the basement of the Howard Johnson, we headed over there. We’d seen that it was open until 11PM, so arriving around 8:30 wasn’t going to be a problem.

And since the heavy downpour that had started earlier that afternoon was still going, being inside was a good choice.

We arrived and promptly went on the free, simulated factory tour which started with talking & singing cows who mooved us through the chocolate making process.

Chocolate World Free Factory Tour Singing Cows

Chocolate World Free Factory Tour Singing Cows Intro

We saw how the cacao beans were roasted, combined and turned into cakes.

Chocolate World Free Factory Tour Bean Blending

Chocolate World Free Factory Tour chocolate cakes

Then we saw how they were converted into a chocolatey liquid and repeatedly mixed to improve smoothness. A method called conching (and for some reason saying this term delighted me, much like Jeanne seeing a moose)

Chocolate World Free Factory Tour Conching

Chocolate World Free Factory Tour Conching Process

We continued through the candy creation process – how cool do the Hershey kisses look!?

Chocolate World Free Factory Tour Hershey Kisses

And then on to the packaging process, which was more of an advertisement than informational.

Chocolate World Free Factory Tour candy packaging

Once you’re done with the ride, they give you a free sample, on our day it was Rolos. 6 feet after this station was a garbage can, full of wrappers. It took us like 3 seconds to cover the 6 feet, how did people finish the candy that quick!

Chocolate World Free Factory Tour Rolos sample
The ride drops you off in the gift shop which not only features cute candy merchandise but hard to find Hershey products as well. Like dark chocolate Reese’s Cups.

Chocolate World Gift Store

Chocolate World Dark Chocolate Reese's Cups

I’d read online that you could temporarily become a factory worker and do your own Hershey Kisses packaging. With visions of trying to hand wrap kisses or handle machinery that did it, I was excited! It was well worth $10 for the experience.

So imagine my surprise when we show up, the only adults who actually planned to do it ourselves and discovered the becoming an employee was getting our pictures taken for a badge. And then holding a plastic container under a chute to fill it with Hershey Kisses. <sigh>

Fortunately you only paid if you claimed your badge or bought your container of self-filled kisses. We passed.Chocolate World Hershey's Kisses PackagingWe did pay $10 for the Chocolate Tasting Adventure though, which was more fun.

Chocolate World Hershey's Chocolate Tasting Adventure

We picked our seats, were given a brief, pleasantly cheesy overview of where chocolate comes from and the variations in types and the Hershey brands. Then we pulled out our paper bag of chocolate we’d been given at the door and started tasting.

Chocolate World Chocolate Tasting Sheet

I rarely eat chocolate, even less so Hershey milk chocolate, and I remembered why! It was fun though to pick out the various flavors in the other slightly more tasty options.

At this point it was 10PM, so we made our purchases of candy gift boxes and dark chocolate Reese’s Cups and headed out to the parking lot. The rain had slackened and we got a nice surprise on our way out. Parking fees were calculated based on hours in the lot, but by 10PM the parking attendant had left, so we’d saved $8+ in parking costs!

Now that was a sweet ending!

Disclaimer: Don’t judge me for the candy inspired wording, I couldn’t resist…


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Living for the little (and big things) that make life so fun, especially mistake deals and crazy last minute weekend mileage runs across the world. www.twitter.com/klatravel


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