The small but attractive region of Alsace is a place where people come to discover picturesque French villages with half-timbered houses and medieval architecture that invoke classic gingerbread creations, admire stunning landscapes, and taste famous Alsatian wines. It is better to travel by car (rent one here), so in a short time you can visit the main attractions and feel the spirit of the region.
A picturesque village with a long history, it attracts thousands of tourists with its architecture, which is harmoniously combined with nature. The small but turbulent Weiss River flows through Kaysersberg, and medieval houses sit on the edge of the bank, right above the water. A stone bridge runs across the river, overlooking the tower and castle ruins. It is worth going up to the hill fortification to admire the Rhine Valley.
The village is beautiful at any time of the year: in summer, the houses are decorated with flowers, and in winter – you can see beautiful Christmas illumination. Vineyards are everywhere, and there are wine cellars in almost every home. Take the opportunity to taste the local Riesling or Pinot Noir. Kaysersberg is very popular with tourists, so it is better to book a hotel in advance here.
Once Kintzheim was the possession of King Charles, and his palace was located here. Today it is a small village where authentic architecture has been preserved, and there are many restaurants and cafes in the old houses. On the roof of each house there is a landing site for storks, where the birds like to build their nests.
The birds of prey nursery located here is extremely popular with both guests and residents of Kintzheim. Visitors can see rare birds, such as the Andean condor, up close. The peculiarity of the nursery is the absence of cages - birds sit in open areas or even fly over the audience, making a show. You can stay in Kintzheim for a wile - a list of hotels in the village can be found at this link.
Riquewihr is famous for its excellent wines. Most of the locals are engaged in winemaking, continuing the traditions of their ancestors. Be sure to check out one of the wine cellars and stroll along the vineyards that surround the village. Although small, the village offers a large selection of souvenir shops, restaurants, and boutiques. On the narrow streets, just as centuries ago, there are half-timbered houses with bright signs. The courtyards and facades decorated with numerous flowers create a feeling of celebration. If you want to stay in Riquewihr, you can find a hotel here.
The tiny village of Hunawihr is just as beautiful as other Alsatian towns. In addition to the colorful houses, take a look at the old city hall, the church, and the fountain of St. Hune, after which the village is named. According to legend, this is the fountain in which the saint washed the clothes of the poor.
Hunawihr is famous for the stork and otter breeding center nearby. Turtles, fish, cormorants and other water birds also live here. Storks and other animals calmly walk around the territory, glancing with curiosity at tourists. You can watch otters swimming and even feed the nutria with carrots. The full list of Hunawihr hotels is here.
Ribeauvillé is a typical Alsatian village with medieval streets, pavements and colorful half-timbered houses. On the hill there are three medieval castles, one of which has completely preserved its original appearance. You can visit that castle, which has a beautiful view of the village and the vineyards. The village hosts festivals and themed fairs every year, from the medieval Christmas market in December to the flower festival in summer. If you've decided to visit Ribeauvillé on such days, be sure to book the hotel in advance using the link.
Turckheim is a charming village with a lot of history and picturesque views. Tourists will have plenty to see here: medieval defensive gates, a fountain decorated with a statue of the Virgin Mary, a military museum, old churches and bell towers. But the greatest reason for the popularity of Turckheim is the local vineyards and the wine produced here, which is known all over the world. You should definitely attend a tasting while you're here. Hotel Des Deux Clefs enjoys a well-deserved popularity among the hotels in Turckheim (room reservation here).
A tiny village on the border with Germany, Hunspach has almost completely retained its medieval appearance. Winding streets, fabulous half-timbered houses, flower-decorated facades, shuttered windows and embroidered curtains all allow tourists to find themselves in a French village several centuries ago.
Hunspach will appeal to those who are interested in the history of World War II: the Maginot Line ran alongside and the Schonenburg Fort was located nearby. Today the location is a military museum. There are not many hotels in the city, and we recommend Chambres d'hôtes Sabine Billmann (you can find a room here).
The modest village of Mittelbergheim is one of the most beautiful in Alsace. Unlike other tourist corners of the region, there are almost no souvenir shops. However, the village has a special atmosphere. It is pleasant to walk around in silence, surrounded by vineyards, old churches and houses. The village is located on the Alsace Wine Route and is especially famous for its Riesling Mittelbergheim. In any of the many wine cellars, you will not only taste and buy a noble drink, but also get acquainted with the peculiarities of its production. For those wishing to stay in this village, there are two small, but good hotels (see them here).
The small and quiet village of Bernardswiller is located next to the famous Mont Saint-Odile and the monastery of the same name. From the top of the mountain, a stunning view of the Alsace Valley opens up, and the nearby villages, already tiny, seem like toys. In Bernardswiller, you can enjoy a nice meal and stroll along the romantic streets. There is only one hotel in the village itself, but you can stay in the neighboring Obernai (see hotels here).
Small and cozy Eguisheim, with narrow cobbled streets, gingerbread houses and painted signs, looks like it fell out of a storybook. Storks walk slowly through the fields, every balcony and window sill is lovingly decorated with flowers in pots, and even the streets have their own flower beds. It seems that the village is buried in flowers, especially in late spring or summer. Here you can wander for hours, looking at the quaint houses entwined with vineyards, each of which is different from the previous one. During the Christmas season, the streets shine with colorful lights, making this place a fairy tale. You can find a good hotel here.
We also recommend taking an unforgettable tour of the villages of Alsace with a tasting of local wines. You can order it here.
Alsatian villages are similar to each other, but at the same time, each of them is unique and you'll enjoy getting to know them.
Have a nice trip!