Best things to do in Colmar, France

Visiter Colmar

If you would like to do an Alsatian wine tour in the Northeast of France, make sure to visit Colmar and enjoy the essence of this charming city!

With its half-timbered houses surrounded by sublime vineyards, Colmar is a city on a human scale where Alsatian winemaking traditions are omnipresent. Also called the “Little Venice of Alsace”, the Colmar area is blessed with a rich architectural and cultural heritage – not to mention environmental beauty.

In this article, we give you the best places to see and visit in Colmar for first-time visitors or those visiting on a day trip in Alsace! From Christmas markets in Colmar during the holiday season, to year-round fun activities for family and friends alike, Winalist is here to help you have the wine vacation of your dreams in Colmar.

For those who wish to taste local productions like wine, we also made sure to tell you about wine-estates that offer wine-activities that you can book on Winalist. In any case, check out our guide to the Alsace Wine Route, as well as the best Alsace wineries to visit or Colmar wine tours listed on our interactive map!

Top Things to do in Colmar, France

To have the best time in this village, here are Winalist’s must-see selection of places, monuments, and other things to do in Colmar, France.

Explore Little Venice

"La petite Venise" de Colmar

Stroll along the Lauch River in the quaint area known as Little Venice. The colorful half-timbered houses and flower-adorned bridges make for perfect photo opportunities. Many will agree on the fact that this part of Colmar is one of the most beautiful places in the city.

Explore the Old Town

rue typique à voir pour visiter Colmar

Colmar’s Old Town is a maze of narrow streets, historic buildings, and vibrant squares. Spend time exploring the area’s shops, cafes, and wine bars.

Visit the Unterlinden Museum

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Housed in a former Dominican convent founded in 1252, the Unterlinden Museum presents a collection of sculptures and paintings from the end of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance.

This museum has a rich cultural identity, and you can also discover an archaeological collection as well as a collection of modern art. On top of all, you’ll enjoy staring at great painters works on display (like Picasso, Monet and Dubuffet).

Another museum to consider is the Bartholdi Museum, dedicated to the creator of the Statue of Liberty, Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi, this museum is housed in the artist’s childhood home and displays his sculptures and personal items.

Admire Saint-Martin Collegiate Church

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This Gothic church, dating back to the 13th century, stands at the heart of Colmar and is notable for its impressive stained glass windows and stone sculptures.

Take a Boat Tour in Little Venice

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For a different perspective of Colmar’s most picturesque district, take a boat tour through the canals of Little Venice. It’s a relaxing way to enjoy the city’s charm.

Sample Alsatian Wines

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If you’re looking to experience one of the best colmar wine tours, discover the Colmar wine estate the perfect location to sample local varieties like Riesling, Gewurztraminer, and Pinot Gris in a tasting room created in 1895.

Enjoy the Alsatian flavor of Colmar

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In Alsace, people love to eat well. And they are proud of local traditional cuisine. You can have fun digging out tasty specialties in Colmar shopping streets!

Among the typical dishes of the Alsatian country, you will find Sauerkraut, Baeckeoffe or Bouchées à la reine. As for dessert, there is what it takes. The most famous Alsatian pastry is Kougelhopf (a brioche with raisins and almonds) – you can taste excellent ones at 11 Quai de la Poissonnerie, at the Maison Alsacienne de la Biscuiterie.

But the best way to taste all those gastronomic specialties is to take a food and wine tour with a local guide! Book now:

What do to around Colmar?

Explore vineyards of Alsace

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Want to venture around Colmar to discover Alsace and its typical villages? The best way of doing it is to rent a car in Colmar and start driving along the Alsace wine route. This road will get you around the best villages of Alsace and allow you to discover landscapes, meet with local inhabitants and explore the Alsatian terroir while enjoying quality tastings with your hosts!

Before hitting the road, don’t forget to check out the best Alsace wineries to visit on Winalist!

Continue your journey to Riquewihr

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Just 10 minutes from Colmar, you’ll find Riquewihr – an equally typical Alsatian village. In a valley surrounded by vineyards, this village is quite lively and can easily be visited on foot in a few tens of minutes. Check out the best wine tours in Riquewihr to visit.

During the summer, the center of the village can be quite crowded since it is so small, but it is still worth the special trip. If you go up the roads leading to the vineyards, you can be more relaxed to admire the panoramic view over the rooftops of Riquewihr and the entire valley.

And if you have the chance to be in the Alsace region during winter, do not miss the best Christmas markets in Alsace!

How to visit Colmar in 1 day?

To see most of the districts of Colmar and visit the main monuments, we advise you to opt for the Colmar City-Pass. You can get it at the Unterlinden museum or at the tourist office, in order to take advantage of the little train, the boats, admission to the museums as well as to the Dominican Church.

Where to park in Colmar?

There are car parks or parking spaces in town, via parking meter or European disc. Underground car parks have also been built near the city center. If you come by train from Strasbourg, allow about 30 minutes.

Why visit Colmar?

It is one of the essentials in Alsace. More charming than Mulhouse, smaller than Strasbourg, Colmar is the perfect balance if you want to immerse yourself in a typical Alsatian city and visit the essentials on foot in 1 day.

Where to stay in Colmar ?

There are so many great places to stay in the heart of the city.
La Maison des Tetes–This five-star hotel features 21 plush rooms located in an historic monument building that dates from 1609. Its brasserie and restaurant are also highly rated.
Le Colombier–In the heart of Petite Venise, this hotel offers 33 air conditioned rooms and suites. It’s hard to find better views in town.
Hotel Saint Martin–In the city center, the Hotel Saint Martin offers the convenience of an ideal location and clean, comfortable rooms.

Where to eat in Colmar ?

– Restaurant JY’s–With two Michelin stars, Restaurant JYS is one of the very best restaurants in Alsace and a must-visit destination for food lovers. It’s also situated right in the heart of Petite Venise.
– Le Caveau Saint Pierre–With great tarte flambée and other Alsatian food, Le Caveau Saint Pierre is a great option for a quick lunch or filling dinner.
– Koifhus Winstub–A large selection of meats, fish, and other traditional dishes are offered up by this well-priced eatery in the middle of old town. Grab a seat outside, if the weather allows.
– Brasserie Schwendi–This Alsatian restaurant in the center of town offers rosti, tarte flambée, and many other solid choices. There is lots of seating outside and inside.
– Le Palmyre – Le Palmyre offers a great change of pace with Lebanese and Syrian specialties. Their meze plates and falafel are delicious.

Best Things to Do in Colmar :

Old Town
Musée d’Unterlinden
Little Venice
Maison Pfister
Musée Bartholdi
La Maison des Têtes
Presbytère Protestant de Colmar
Collégiale Saint-Martin de Colmar
Schwendi Fountain
Musée du Jouet de Colmar
Maison Adolph
Ballons des Vosges – Gazon du Faing
Alsatian Wine Route

What is the Best Time to Visit Colmar, France ?

Visiting Colmar in France is wonderful anytime of year; deciding what is the best time to go to Colmar will depend on your desired activities.

Summer in Colmar :
Summertime is a great time to visit Colmar. The weather is warm and there are lots of events happening around town. That said, the city can get crowded in the summer, which makes it difficult to get dinner reservations and increases the price of accommodations.

Colmar Spring and Autumn :
The spring and autumn mark the shoulder season. While the temperatures are cooler and rain is more likely in the forecast, there are fewer people and better prices.

Wintertime in Colmar :
Some travelers may wonder what to do in Colmar in winter, but we can assure you it is a fabulous time to visit! The best things to do in Colmar in December are the picture-perfect Colmar Christmas Markets that take place in the heart of the old town. Just plan for colder weather!