I am an Australian freelance writer living in Adelaide.
Published November 3rd 2011
Have you got a sweet tooth to satisfy or a chocolate craving that just won't go away? Get the girls together and go on a chocoholic walking tour of Melbourne - you won't be able to look at anything sweet for weeks.
I was 14 when I went on the Saturday "Chocolate Indulgence Walk". A friend took five of us out for her birthday, and at $37 per person, it's no wonder she was an only child. The places where we stopped at to sample chocolate ice cream (New Zealand Natural), chocolate truffles (David Jones Food Hall), chocolate mud cake and hot chocolate (the Tisane Lounge) and Cadbury favourites along the way, was different then to where the walks take you today. This is simply because more chocolate stores including The Lindt Cafe, Theobroma Chocolate Lounge and Chocolateria San Churro are now open. Institutions such as The Chocolate Box and Haighs are still favourites though.
The walking is a great aspect of the tour, not only because it gives you a chance to digest each chocolate "meal" (and hopefully work some of it off at the same time) but it gives you the chance to stop and admire Melbourne for her beauty. Stroll past monuments, museums and gardens without a care in the world, except which is the next chocolate stop.
The iconic and historical Block Arcade
Just choosing which of the eight tours to do is a challenge because as soon as you start reading their itineraries, your mouth starts watering. The photos do nothing to help this.
A friendly word of warning though, I urge you to eat breakfast on the day of your tour. I sensibly thought to myself, I'm going to be eating sooo much chocolate that I wouldn't want to line my stomach with anything "inferior", plus I wanted to get my money's worth.
I paid for this decision three stops into the tour when I fainted in Darrell Lea. Yes, I will repeat, I FAINTED IN DARRELL LEA FROM A SUGAR OVERDOSE. One minute I was listening to the history of the store and the next minute, the licorice allsorts and rocklea road appeared to be spinning and I was out cold on the floor. If that wasn't embarrassing enough, my entourage took me, ghost white, to a park bench luckily just outside the store and I decided that no, I didn't want to sit, I WANTED TO LIE DOWN ON THE SEAT. If you think where Darrell Lea is on Swanston Street, the busiest shopping mall in Melbourne, there I was passed out, having friends fetch water and some bread for me. You have been warned…
Suzie Wharton who conducts these tours still remembers me to this day. It's not everyday someone faints on her tours, she recalls. So what are you waiting for? Book yourself on a chocolate tour you won't forget.