Food festivals, local farmers' markets, harvest festivals and events like flea and Sunday markets have always fascinated me. They tend to showcase local art, craft, produce and provide a great insight into the culture and heritage of a place. I always try and visit these events for their novel and sometimes unconventional appeal.
While visiting Manchester a few years ago, I happened to read about the Chocolate festival at Ramsbottom which was taking place around the same time. Quite excited at the idea of visiting a chocolate festival for the first time, we quickly looked up the directions for the tiny town of Ramsbottom from Manchester. A quaint town with the typical old world charm, Ramsbottom is a market town in the Metropolitan Borough of Bury, Greater Manchester, England. The town is famous for the annual chocolate festival normally held on the weekend before Easter.
Arriving at the town center on a rather cold weekend, I was amazed to see the town center teeming with stalls full of absolutely delectable goodies. The stalls were buzzing with activity with enthusiastic store owners attending to eager adults and children alike. The whole idea of a fun filled chocolate themed weekend made me feel, quite literally, like a kid lost in a candy store!!!
The wares on display were truly creative, colorful and of course lip smacking. From cup cakes to chocolate pizzas to specially curated cookies and chocolates to the handmade lip balms and soaps, everything looked incredible.
An ideal family outing, we spent about half a day before doing a quick round of the other delightful little stores in the town center that were open that day.
The winner of the prized Manchester Tourism Award for the Best Small Event in 2012, festival has been getting bigger and better each year ever since it started in 2009. Slated to take place t his year on the 19th and 20th of March, it is little wonder that this festival is in the top 10 chocolate festivals in Europe!
More information on this years' festival can be obtained here.