Colmar, Strasbourg and the Castle of Haut-Koenigsbourg: A Brief Trip to Alsace, France

About a month ago, I received a text message from a friend at about 10.30pm on a Monday evening: “How spontaneous are you?”. My reply was: “Not that spontaneous at 10.30pm on a Monday evening.”

Luckily, he wasn’t referring to doing something that late on a school night, but he was referring to a spontaneous road trip to France for one night at the weekend, as the following Monday was a bank holiday in Germany (Pfingsten). So we said yes!

So four of us headed by car to the region of Alsace in France on the Sunday. We had booked a hotel (Hôtel Restaurant Les Maraîchers) in the quaint town of Colmar. We arrived in Colmar after around a 3-hour car trip. We had a look around and had some coffee and cake, and I practised a bit of français (extremely rusty…).

We soon realised that we’d kind of seen it all after only a few hours, and we’d already found a location where we wanted to go for dinner that evening. With still a few hours to go before we could actually check into our hotel, we decided to head to the Castle of Haut-Koenigsbourg, which is apparently one of the most visited monuments in France.

It was a very pretty castle all the way up on the top of a huge hill (we got a parking spot right at the top, phew!) and we got some pretty spectacular views from right at the top of the castle towers!

After a few hours having a look around the castle and its grounds, it was time to head back to Colmar and check into the hotel. After a brief nap (we’re getting old), we walked into the town and had some dinner, with snails for starters, of course! Yum! After having moved over to a bar for a few drinks, we called a night, ready to build up energy for our journey back the next day, via Strasbourg.

Strasbourg was a very spontaneous decision. We had initially decided we would only go to Colmar for the two days, but with Strasbourg practically being on the way back home to Frankfurt, and with Colmar being actually very small and us having seen everything already, we wanted to spend the day in the capital of Alsace.

Strasbourg, in a nutshell, was beautiful, but you could tell immediately that it was a tourist hotspot and generally quite a big city. The main activity of the day was walking around, seeing the sights, stopping for a drink every now and then… and we saw some pretty nice places dotted around.

When it was time for dinner, we went back to the “Little Venice” area along the river for dinner, and you can tell we were all pretty tired from walking around all day (I told you, we’re getting old). Via the European Parliament which we briefly saw for 5 minutes (there’s not really much to it from outside), we then headed back to Frankfurt, arriving just in time for Tatort (phew!).

So, all in all, it was an extremely brief visit with us being in France just over 24 hours. I always knew France was so close to us in Frankfurt, but I guess it’s not until you actually hop into a car and drive until you realise how close it actually is!

I would definitely recommend the Alsace region if you’re looking for good food and quaint places to get away for a few days!

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