5000 years of cultural history

The Chocolate Museum gives you insights by taking you on a journey through 5,000 years of chocolate's cultural history.

On approximately 4.000 m2 of museum floorspace, exhibits show the emergence, history and culture of chocolate.

The unique collection, including literature and graphics, comprises round about 100.000 objects.

A treasure trove

The Museum's "treasure trove" gives you a look into pre-Columbian mesoamerica and into the cultures of the Olmecs, Mayas and Aztecs for whom cocoa was a drink of the Gods while also serving as a form of currency over the centuries.

You can view extremely rare exhibits which reveal the status that cocoa had for these cultures and the ways in which it was prepared. We show you sculptures and objects used in rituals, as well as milling stones and drinking vessels.

How chocolate conquered Europe

Chocolate has been enjoyed for almost 5,000 years. In the 17th and 18th centuries it conquered the salons of aristocratic and wealthy classes.

To enjoy cocoa in a socially acceptable way required a chocolate service made of highly valued porcelain, silver and gold. Our collection shows you chocolate cups and pots which demonstrate the feudal use of the luxury goods within the courts.

Let yourself be transported back to aristocratic society where life was characterized by cultivated inactivity.

In the eighteenth century, chocolate was always prepared in the same way and differed only in taste through the addition of spices. The ingredients needed to be of the highest quality. Preparation of the drink was the task of favourite female servants and specially trained "chocolate maids". Their only task was to turn the precious cocoa beans into a drink, and then serve it.

Fascinating Cultural History

You can find out more about the development of chocolate into a luxury treat for everyone in our cultural-historical exhibition. In the 19th and 20th centuries, industrialisation and colonisation slowly made chocolate more affordable. Nevertheless, cocoa and chocolates remained a gift for special occasions.

Whether on the radio or television, chocolate is omnipresent. In the past, the chocolate market has spared no effort to impress us with beautiful packaging, enamel signs or posters. In our exhibition you can admire the most diverse advertising media, which were used especially in the time around the turn of the century up to the 1950s.