History of the Festival
The first chocolate festival took place in Radovljica on 22nd April 2012 and it was also the first such event of its kind in Slovenia.
Chocolatiers from all over Slovenia showcased and offered their chocolate and chocolate creations for tasting and sale: the Gorenjska chocolate factory, Rajska ptica, Cukrček, Da Ponte, Lucifer, Molinet, Plešec, and Passero. From its very beginning the Radovljica Chocolate Festival included cookery shows and a children’s entertainment programme. The first festival, which was held for one day only, attracted an amazing number of visitors, surprising both the exhibitors and the organisers.
The 2nd festival was spread over two days and took place on the 20th and 21st April 2013. Tasting coupons were introduced for the first time. In addition to the 20 chocolatiers who showcased and offered their products for tasting and sale in Linhart Square and the Radovljica Mansion, there was a varied accompanying entertainment programme. Tasting coupons were introduced for the first time at the 2nd festival. The festival organisers estimated that more than 20,000 visitors from Slovenia and abroad attended the festival over its two days.
The 3rd festival took place on 12th and 13th April 2014. Over 30 chocolatiers took part. It is estimated that around 40,000 people visited the festival. New additions to the festival programme were chocolate body painting and non-chocolate dishes prepared by chefs from local Taste Radol’ca restaurants.
In 2015 the festival organisers added an additional festival day as well as extending it across more locations.
The festival took place between 17th – 19th April. Over 40 chocolatiers, including some from outside of Slovenia, took part. For the first time, the festival began on Friday afternoon and an additional location was used – the former Baroque park, adjacent to the old town centre. Both these new additions were well received. According to rough estimates, over 50,000 people visited the festival.
The 5th Chocolate Festival took place from 15 – 17th April 2016. Forty-six chocolatiers took part. According to rough estimates, around 60,000 visitors attended the festival. New additions to the festival included measures to reduce crowding of the stalls in Linhart Square by lining them along one side of the square only, an enhanced entertainment programme, and stalls in the park. An additional location – Radovljica’s new Vurnik Square – was the venue for the giant chocolate bar prepared by the Cukrček chocolatier, which was entered into the Guinness Book of Records for the largest chocolate bar by area, measuring 142.32 square metres and weighing 1.5 tonnes.
The rich entertaiment programme was supplemented by a new ‘chocolate throne’, whilst a new festival map and signposts aided better orientation for visitors.
At the 6th Chocolate Festival, held over three days in 2017, in addition to the wide range of festival entertainment and exhibitors in other locations, a varied programme of chocolate-themed events also took place in Vurnik Square. Visitors were able to try their luck at a chocolate roulette, watch chocolate pictures and sculptures being formed, watch how chocolate is produced in the onsite mini chocolate factory and taste an assortment of chocolates and chocolate-based dishes.