About the Alsace Region
Learn more about France most pictoresque region
About & facts
Just a jump across the Rhine – and much of it still feels familiar and yet, different and foreign. In the Alsace region, it is said that German “Gemütlichkeit“ mixes with French Savoir-vivre in a very unique and typical Alsatian attitude toward life which the visitors can easily participate in. And not only for this reason Alsace is such a beautiful travel destination , not only for this reason but also as it is a very special part of France and Europe that has something to offer for everybody.
Nostalgia and Romanticism
The most liked picture postcard motive in Alsace is the beautiful, with red Geranium flowers decorated, half-timbered houses nestled along small canals and cobble-stone plastered alleys. This typical romanticism is surpassed only when an inhabited stork nest crowns the spire of a medieval town wall or when couples, dressed in the local traditional costumes, dance to local folk music at one of the manifold local festivals which are featured on a card instead. This kind of Alsace can become a balm for the soul in our modern very hectic and stressful times. It allows us to be able to travel back into the good old past, without to give up on plenty of modern amenities. It may sound like a cliché but Alsatians do not celebrate and cultivate their traditions simply as a touristic publicity stunt but because they cherish the meaning behind these events.
Art & Cultural Delights
Far beyond the limits of the Alsace Region, Strasbourg City’s cathedral and Grünewald Isenheim Altar Piece in Colmar City are renowned. Along the path there, the traveler does discovers almost at every step further important Romanesque and Gothique style churches with extremely delicate or expressive stonemason works. Alsace is just very rich in religious treasures such as the late medieval winged altar of Bühler or the picture carpets of the holy Adelphus from Neuviller-lès-Saverne just to name two examples. History lovers enjoy the rich historic architecture with impressive squares and fountains, town halls and bourgeois family houses in renaissance style, medieval ramparts and countless castle ruins. And last but not least, Alsace is a paradise for friends of museums. A real must is the famous Unterlinden-Museum in Colmar and the Musée de L’Oeuvre Notre-Dame in Strasbourg or the Modern Art Museum and the Technical Museum in Mulhouse. But also smaller villages and little towns offer interesting exhibitions to different areas of Alsatian culture. You could travel for months here and educate yourself and still discover something new about local history.
Gourmet kitchen and home cooking
Prestigious magazines again and again elaborately report on the culinary accomplishments of the Alsace region. Gourmets find themselves here in the 7th- Michelin-star-heaven. Even a relatively simple Munster cheese becomes a special kind of experience here. Whoever travels into the Alsace region can look forward to great food, no matter if one enjoys haute cuisine in fine gourmet restaurants, in cosy winepubs or in rustic mountain guesthouses, the latter offering the famous choucroute or a hearty Melkersmahlzeit. It is almost an obligatory program in Alsace to visit a wine cave since Riesling, Gewürztraminer and Pinot Blanc & Co. enjoy a most favorable reputation in wine-spoiled country of France.
Landscape & Outdoors
The landscapes in the Alsace Region are remarkably diverse. The palette reaches from jungle looking alluvial forests along the Rhine and wetlands of the Ried with its unique flora and fauna, to the sun-pampered delightful hill country of the wine mountains, to the forest rich Vosges Mountains, showing alpine characters in the South. We also have to mention the beautiful Sundgau. In all of these landscapes, one can undertake beautiful hikes and discovery tours. And especially the marshlands and the Vosges Mountains which lie slightly off from the main traffic roads still offer comparatively a lot of intact environment. Fortunately, these areas have been increasingly protected in an increased way in recent years. Those of you who enjoy discovering a landscape from a car and love to do stops in-between, we recommend the many routes running through Alsace:
The famous route des vins d’Alsace in the hill country, the route de la choucroute or the route du tabac in the Rhine Rift Valley, the phenomenal views offering route des cretes running along the main crest … are all fantastic options.
Everywhere in Alsace Region you will meet bicyclists. The varied terrain with plenty of designated bike paths offers great opportunities to unhurried Sunday drivers as well as well-trained athletes. There are even better options for hiking friends: the Club of Vosges created many well-marked paths in the Vosges Mountains , plus you can stroll casually along the vineyards and marshland paths. But that’s not all: horse ranches, many open-air pools and quite a few fresh water lakes for swimming offer even more options during your holiday. Those who are seeking a bit of thrill can book a parachute glide session. And last but not least, a lot of visitors come here for winter sports activities during the snow-rich winters.
Family Vacation with kids
Alsace may not be exactly the classic family holiday destination but nevertheless, you can easily spend adventurous holidays here with your kids. Attractive destinations for the whole family include the mines in Ste-Marie-aux-Mines or the ship hoist in Saverne. A particular highlight also is the famous raptor center with flight demonstrations and the monkey forest in Kintzheim. Besides, there are a lot of further interesting animal parks along the famous wine route. The interesting museums for kids are always well-liked by families. However, these activities come with relatively high entrance fees. If you are looking for more budget-friendly family-activities, there are many adventures with zero costs: the exploration of numerous castle ruins or a visit of a local Ferme-Auberge, the farm houses in the Vosges Mountains with their stables are just two of the many examples.