It was actually much more compact/smaller/easier to navigate than I imagined. This was a good thing for sure, as I was a bit scared as to what I was going to find. Elizabeth liked that the chocolates were greeting us from the roof. I agree.
Once inside everything broke off from the lobby. Here we are with Rebecca and her son Joel. (it’s Joel… I think. If I’m wrong just smack me Rebecca!) in the lobby. The areas are the 3-d show (?), 1hr trolly tour of Hershey (fee for that one- about $12 if I remember correctly), the marketplace (shopping and food), the great chocolate tour, and factory works. (more on the last 3 in a moment…)
“marketplace” had most of the shopping and also an area full of food (pretty dang good selection- better than I anticipated!). Like I said before- all but about 3 or 4 of the chocolate items I’ve seen in my area. I’m guessing I just have a great city for candy shopping! I thought I took pics of inside marketplace. dang. Well it was shopping (candies, chocolates, apparel and gift items) and also a food court area. Pretty big, actually.
I do have photos of the “great American chocolate tour”. It’s a ride (if you’ve been to Epcot- similar to spaceship earth) that you sit in a moving car and go through the process of making Hershey chocolate. It’s totally fake- you’re not going into the actual factory. But it’s fun, about 10min long, and the little ones think it’s for real. At the end you get a bite-sized chocolate. yum.
the ride line takes you through the cocoa plantations… I so love her patient face. As in “fine. I’ll wait and let you take a photo but only because I get to ride a ride.”
Then when you get into your ride car you start in the pastures surrounding Hershey. Where, apparently, the cows sing. “hershey’s milk chocolate, it’s the milk chocolate…” type song. This is where E was inspired to purchase Messy.
and they go through all the chocolate making steps, ending (of course!) with a big display of all the Hershey brand stuff! (those photos didn’t come out- dim light + fast moving stuff = total blur!)
the ‘factory works’ section had more (candy) shopping, plus a few interactive “purchase opportunities” such as a custom hershey bar, decorate a cupcake, and you could package up some hershey’s kisses. That last one is free (unless you want to buy a factory ID for your child)- and we went for it.
the kids put hershey kisses (which came off the assembly line) into a gear and shook them. I’m pretty sure gear shaking isn’t a part of the process at the actual factory. But that’s ok. As you can see- they enjoyed playing and shaking.
and that, is my 2hr tour of world of chocolate in Hershey, PA. Tomorrow (I know a few of you are waiting for it!) will be my Scranton, PA experience…