New Chocolate Theme Park Gets the Fantasy All Wrong

willy wonka chocolate roomI was so excited when I heard about the chocolate theme park in China: World Chocolate Wonderland. Finally, my dream come true -- someone had built Willy Wonka's chocolate factory! When can I jump on a plane to Shanghai? I'll bring my spoon. Heck, I'll swim there if I have to.

But then I saw the pictures. What the hell? This is not the chocolate theme part of my dreams! This is a library for people who like the idea of chocolate but don't actually enjoy eating it. It looks like a museum of random stuff made out of chocolate. Where are the rides? Did I ask for a chocolate Bumblebee Transformer? No I did not! 


Oh China, how did you get this so wrong? Apparently World Chocolate Wonderland is more a travelling exhibition than a theme park. There are also chocolate "sushi rolls," a chocolate kitty, and a chocolate Qing Dynasty emperor's hat. Um ... neat. But you could have made those out of plastic for all I can tell. There will be chocolatier demos and hands-on chocolate-making workshops. But still

Here's what my chocolate theme park would look like -- and I know, because I recently spent an afternoon with my son drawing it all out. There would be a chocolate river flowing throughout the park, of course. And we would all have marshmallows and strawberries to dip into it (please refrain from double-dipping). There would be chocolate boulders to climb and gnaw on, and chocolate truffles parachuting from the sky. As for rides, imagine Disneyland's Splash Mountain set in caramel falls! Or a Ferris wheel that helps you reach a chocolate-covered pretzel tree! Wouldn't you love to visit that?

Sigh. Well, at least WCW got the river part right: Shanghai's Huangpu River reportedly flows with real liquid chocolate. But I guess I'll just have to keep watching Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory and dreaming. 

Would you like to visit World Chocolate Wonderland?


Image via YouTube

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