Opened by local chocolatier Hans Imhoff in 1993, the Cologne Chocolate Museum (Schokoladenmuseum) is devoted to Cologne’s chocolate-making history. This fun family attractions lets visitors peek behind the scenes of a working chocolate factory, learn about the farming of cacao beans, and sample delicious Lindt chocolate.
A self-guided tour of the Schokoladenmuseum takes visitors on a fascinating journey through the history of chocolate, cocoa production, and chocolate-making around the world. Walk through a tropical greenhouse with live cacao trees, see the chocolate-making process through glass-sided machines, and watch demonstrations by master chocolatiers in the workshop area. Guided tours, workshops, and chocolate tastings are also available.
The museum is a popular inclusion on Cologne city tours, and hop-on hop-off bus tours stop right outside. For the best value, opt to combine your ticket with a sightseeing cruise along the Rhine River, a ride on the Schoko-Express train, or entrance to the Odysseum science and technology museum.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Plan 1–2 hours to explore the Schokoladenmuseum.
- Visitors are required to pass security checks to enter the museum, and large bags and suitcases are prohibited.
- Paid car parking is available at the Rheinauhafen underground garage, just a few minutes’ walk from the museum.
- The Chocolate Museum is fully wheelchair accessible, and discounted entrance is available for visitors with disabilities.
How to Get There
The Chocolate Museum is just opposite Malakoff Tower in central Cologne. It’s an easy walk from the Old Town and a 15- to 20-minute walk from Cologne Cathedral. By public transit, take bus 133 to the museum, the tram to Heumarkt, or the U-Bahn to Severinstrasse. The most scenic way to arrive is riding the Schoko-Express, a tourist train that runs from the train station to the museum, stopping at sights such as the cathedral, the opera house, and Cologne Botanical Garden (Botanischer Garten Köln) along the way.
When to Get There
The museum is open daily year-round, although it is closed on Mondays throughout November. As one of the city’s most popular attractions, it can get busy, especially during July and August, when an early morning visit offers the best chance to avoid the crowds. December is an atmospheric time to visit, when the square in front of the museum hosts a lively Christmas market.
The Schokoladenmuseum is in partnership with famous Swiss chocolate brand Lindt & Sprüngli, and all the chocolates produced and sold at the museum are Lindt—an estimated 880 pounds (400 kilograms) every day. Visitors can sample the chocolates during a museum tour, including a scoop from the gigantic chocolate fountain. Opt to create your own chocolate bars; shop for chocolate goodies at the Chocolat Shop; tuck into house-made chocolate bars, truffles, and desserts; or sip hot chocolate at the Chocolat Grand Café.