Rich with Culture and Medieval Charm
Located in the heart of beautiful Alsace, France, the city of Colmar offers up all the medieval charm and rich culture for which the region has become known and loved. Ancient streets, perfect for enjoying a leisurely stroll, are lined with quaint old shops and remarkably preserved buildings that provide a fascinating glimpse into the area’s deep-routed past. Enjoy a glass of world-class Alsatian wine as you marvel at the centuries old German and French architecture and relax and unwind amidst the peaceful atmosphere of a city that time seems to have forgotten.
The main attraction in Colmar is the area of the city known as “old town”, a stunningly beautiful place that has somehow managed to maintain its ancient look and feel. It is a lovely destination to enjoy an afternoon, and its proximity makes it ideal for conquering it either on foot or on bike. The warm, welcoming feeling of the shops and buildings in old town is matched only by the friendly people who call the area home.
Colmar also happens to be considered the capital of Alsatian wine, and for good reason. The wine produced there is widely esteemed both within France and around the world. Alsatian wine is quite unique, although it does bear some resemblance to a few of the wines produced in Germany. Two of the most well-known wines of the area include Muscat, which is fairly sweet in taste, and Gewürztraminer, which is very sweet, particularly when compared to wines of the same name that are produced in other regions. There are plenty of tours available on which you can experience the winemaking process and sample several local wines.
Given Colmar’s size, there are quite a few notable landmarks to visit and all located fairly close to one another, making them quite convenient for visitors. These structures showcase an incredible eight centuries of French and German architecture including Maison Adolph (German Gothic), Maison Pfister (German Renaissance), Poêle des Laboureurs (German Baroque), Hôtel de Ville (French Classicism), Théâtre Municipal (French Neo-Classicism) and Marché Couvert (French Neo-Baroque). It’s a fantastic sampling of many unique styles, all in one place.
Of all the monuments in Colmar, however, the one that is touted as a “must see” is St. Martin Church. The building was constructed sometime between 1234 and 1365 with the bell tower’s helmet added on in 1572 following a fire. The church features a beautiful colored tile roof and is surrounded by several small portals, many of which are bricked up. The larger ones feature richly sculpted tympana, or decorative wall surfaces over the entrances. It also boasts massive (and architecturally rare) pillars that support the church’s façade. The interior of the church features several historical pieces including furniture and a Baroque organ case from the 1700s as well as exquisite stained glass windows.