Colmar is one of the well-known gems of Alsace, the region of France that borders Germany. It’s rumoured to have inspired the setting for Beauty and the Beast but whether or not it was Colmar or another Alsacian village, Colmar is definitely a town out of a faerytale.
The famous picture of Colmar’s “little Venice” is probably the most common one you’ve seen and annoyingly, it might also be the only one you’ve ever seen – but don’t be fooled! This town is absolutely huge for the amount of old timber-framed houses it has, all of which are super colourful and date circa the 17th and 18th centuries. There’s a lot more to see than la Petite Venise. Though the town doesn’t have many traditional squares, other notable sites include Place de l’Ancienne Douane, Saint Martin Church, a stroll along the Grand Rue and a stop at the Koifhus, Rue des Tanneurs (Tanner’s district), the Pfister House, and the Roesselmann Fountain – just to name a few. If you’re into art, you can also visit the Musée Unterlinden. But the charm of Colmar is everywhere, like, everywhere. I was really amazed at how beautiful this city is but how little people talk about it.
Like any other small town, I’d recommend walking around but with Colmar, definitely bring a map of some kind. They also have boat tours, which is always an interesting way to see a city. The streets are a lot more confusing than some other towns and it’s easy to miss some streets if you don’t have an idea of where you’re going. What I like to do with small towns I explore is mark where I’ve been on a map and make sure I cover all (or at least most) of the streets to make sure I don’t miss anything, and with such a beautiful city as Colmar, every corner has a stunning view.
I was also pleasantly surprised with Colmar because even though it is a tourist town, it also has a tonne of shopping and a variety of different eats and drinks. I usually starve in France as a vegetarian but it was fairly easy to find things I could eat here. Be sure to grab some of Colmar’s gingerbread and a bottle of Alsace wine before departing!
How to Get There: Colmar does have a train station but I found that booking bus tickets might have more frequent options. From the train station, you will need to walk a few minutes to get to the old part of town. To do so, walk north up Avenue de la République.
A lot of people think of Colmar as having its “little Venice” but it is so much bigger and more charming than just that. I actually prefer Colmar so much more over its rival city Strasbourg and think that the city is a great place to stay for a few days to make a relaxing vacation. I really can’t wait to go back because Colmar is one of my favourite places.
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Posted on Tuesday, July 17, 2018 in Destinations
Tags: alsace, colmar, europe, france