What to see in Alsace. Alsace attractions from Selestat to Colmar and Eguisheim

Last Updated on 18/11/2022

We continue to explore Alsace attractions. In the previous part, we got from the north to Selestat. Now let’s go further south. Here the number of attractions and picturesque towns increases. Endless vineyards stretch along the hills, and in the half-timbered old villages you will find no less endless vinotheques.

Maps nearby:
What to see in Alsace. 1. Northern Alsace
Strasbourg (Strassburg). What to see
Southern Alsace. Mulhouse
Basel
Attractions of Black Forest (Schwarzwald). 1. From Altensteig to Gengenbach
From Gengenbach to Wildkirch

Alsace attractions on the map

What to see in Alsace. Alsace attractions from Selestat to Colmar
enlarge Map data ©OpenTopoMap, ©OpenStreetMap

Everything important that you can see in the region – with notes and links.

  • 1 – top
  • 2 – very good, although not so well known
  • 3 – good for a short vacation or a layover. Several medium-level interesting places
  • 4 – local or specific, not for everyone

Marks without brackets – I was there (there are links to the posts). With brackets – I wasn’t there. Of course, the notes are subjective

Important for Alsace: Rhine is not good river for swimming. It is too dangerous! Each year it takes some peoples lives. For swimming there are a row of quarry lakes along Rhine in Germany (20-30 minutes from Selestat or Colmar by car) and some lakes and swimming pools in France.

Alsace tourist cards and public transport
History of half-timbered houses

Lists of the most”
Lable “the most beautiful village” – link
Lable “small town with character” – link
Lable “special” garden (Jardin Remarquable) – link

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22. Scherwiller

Bus from Selestat Station.

Castle Ortenbourg.

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23. Selestat

Old town
Museum of the bread (link).
Humanist Library (link).

More about what to see in Selestat and around it.

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24. Kintzheim and around

Kintzheim – old town

All attractions are served by Navetta 500 from Selestat Station. Please note: if you visit more than one attraction, then you should pay attention to day tickets, including for a group.
If you need to get off in the middle of the route – sit next to the driver! He regularly ignores intermediate stops, does not look at the signal of the button and does not hear what is yelled at him.

Nearby:
amusement park Cigoland (link)

castle Haut-Koenigsbourg (restored at the turn of the 19th-20th centuries, link)

birds of prey show (www.voleriedesaigles.com)

and “monkey” mountain, where you can walk through the forest, where monkeys live without enclosures (link).

More about these attractions

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25. S. Marie aux Mines

Bus from Selestat Station goes only to the city, but there is still far from the mine.

Mine Tellure (link). The mine is suitable primarily for those who are interested in history. There are not so many special visual lures, the guide’s story is more important. The German-speaking tour guide is an exceptionally motivated and interesting storyteller. Naturally, you also need to know enough French or English or German to understand everything. A visit to the mine consists of a guided tour (45 minutes) and a small museum.

The valley is famous for mining. The city hosts an international auction of stones. Unfortunately, the mine and the city look somewhat abandoned – there are few people, the city seems shabby. The authorities did not think of attracting tourists with additional entertainment, although the area is picturesque and nearby tourist cities would give them the necessary tourist flow.

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26. Ribeauville, Hunawihr, Riquewihr, Bergheim

A group of cities on the wine road. In each half-timbered old center, wineries with tasting.

From Colmar bus 106 Riquewihr – Hunawihr – Ribeauville.
From Selestat bus 109. Watch out for lunch breaks!
Kut’zig – open-top bus through wine towns for about 15 euros (link).

Bergheim -old city with a fortress wall.

Hunawihr – in addition to being a picturesque old town (from the list of the most), there are Naturoparc park nearby (storks, otters, penguins, www.cigogne-loutre.com), butterflies (very small, www.jardinsdespapillons.fr)

Ribeauville

Ribeauville – the old city and the ruins of three fortresses above it.

The city is the longest narrow street, along which every minute, cars drive quite quickly. At least that’s what happens during the day, which is incredibly annoying, especially if you’re walking in a group. Maybe it’s quieter in the evening.

Above the street, from time to time ruins of the castle of St. Ulrich are visible. They are the best preserved from three castle ruins of the city. The fortress is located on an exceptionally steep slope, the two roads leading to it are hardly passable for strollers, small children and people with limited mobility.

In addition to the ruins of the castle of St. Ulrich and half-timbered houses, the church of St. Gregory (13th century, Gothic) is interesting.

A cozy square near the end of an endless street with the only (as usual in France at lunchtime) working donner is the best place in town.

We finally made it to the end of the street. For some reason, the castle did not become lower (only a miserable 500 meters of elevation).

Riquewihr

Riquewihr – picturesque old town (from the list of the most). It was the most crowded and most colourful, and I would say the most kitsch, and therefore ended up at the bottom of my personal rating of Alsatian half-timbered.

Elsass Alsace Riquewihr

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27. Lac Blanc

Two lakes, rope park (link), hiking trails in the mountains.

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28. Munster valley

Cheese making center in Gunsbach, home of Albert Schweitzer

You can get there by train from Colmar

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29. Turckheim

Old town.

You can get there by train from Colmar

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30. Equisheim

Particularly picturesque old town. Near the ruins of three fortresses and one fortress with a visit – Hohlandsbourg (Link)

Equisheim – one of the “most beautiful cities in France”. It seemed to us more worthy of this title than Riquewihr, perhaps due to the fact that in the evening, when most tourists go to the place of lodging for the night, it was easier to see than the overcrowded Riquewihr.

Already in Roman times there was a fortress here. In the 8th century a castle was built, surrounded by water and an octagonal fortress wall. In the 11th century the future Pope Leo 9 was born in Eguisheim, but the town has not been noted for anything else significant in history.

The old urban layout has been preserved: two ring streets, the central Grand Rue, a tiny castle in the very center, a church.

As in all towns along the wine road, there are plenty of offers to try and buy local wine. The first grapes were planted here by the Romans, and now there are about 30 wine producers in the city. And this can be done, it seems, at any time of the day, but the hot kitchen in most restaurants starts working from 18.00-18.30 (they wait for the tourists to leave).

How to get to Eguisheim. Bus 208 or 440 from Colmar.
Kut’zig – open-top bus through wine towns for about 15 euros (link).

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31. Colmar

Old town. Museum Unterlinden (link). Bartholdi Museum (link).

The old houses that are considered the most interesting in Colmar:
Adolf’s house (maison Adolph, partly 1350),
old customs house (Ancienne Douane, 1480),
Pfister’s house (Maison Pfister, 1537),
House of heads (maison des Tetes, 1609).

Don’t forget to visit the church of St. Martin (1234–1365), Petite Venise quarter, Quartier des Tanneurs quarter, Fisherman’s quarter (Quartier de la poissonnerie).

Disadvantages of the city: the city is overly advertised, although the half-timbered part here is not so large and only museums and a small canal give a real advantage over other cities. It is very poorly with plans on the streets and with food in the evening (there is a queue for all cafes, and bakeries and other fast foods are closed).

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Museums

In the former Dominican church, one of the medieval masterpieces is exhibited – Martin Schongauer’s painting “Madonna in the Arbor of Roses”.

Museum Unterlinden (Musee d’Unterlinden) located in the building of a former Dominican monastery. The collection contains outstanding works of medieval art, the most important of which is the Isenheim Altarpiece by Matthias Grünewald and Niklaus von Hagenau (1512-1516). Also exhibited are works by Martin Schongauer, Hans Holbein the Elder, Lucas Cranach the Elder and anonymous German and Alsatian masters, sculptures, stained glass windows. But the museum’s collection is not limited to medieval works. Archaeological finds (including mosaics of the 3rd century), silver and gold items, hunting and military weapons, musical instruments, furniture, household items of the 14th-19th centuries are presented and there is even modern art (Picasso, Pierre Bonnard, Monet, etc.).

The Bartholdi Museum is dedicated to the work of a local sculptor – the author of the Statue of Liberty.

Elsass Alsace Colmar

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32. Neuf Brisach

Walled city designed by Vauban (UNESCO).
Activities associated with the proximity to the Rhine (water recreation, nature observation, cycling, etc.).

You can get to Neuf Brisach with the bus 1076 from Breisach (Germany) and Colmar.

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