The Alsace Wine Route: Wine Becomes Travel
Over 170km, one of the oldest tourist routes in France has quite a bit in store for you: tasty surprises through encounters with wine-growers; architectural surprises through a hundred wine-growing areas in the ancient past; and finally, natural surprises in the Parc Régional des Vosges. Take the wheel, get on your bike or slip on your hiking shoes to explore, over 5 stages, the Alsace Wine Route.
Start your adventure in the Wissembourg region to the far north of Alsace. The route will guide you through villages full of particularly well preserved Alsace traditions: half-timbered houses (18th and 19th centuries), costumes, folklore and dialects that are still spoken. Time to take a break in one of the numerous wine cellars, you need to cover 60km heading south to reach the outskirts of Strasbourg.
Once in the Strasbourg vineyards, a few kilometres from the European capital, the various wine routes intersect the vineyards of Kochersberg, planted in the middle of grain crops. Further on, there stands the famous hill of Scharrach, where you will admire the extraordinary view over Vosges, the Alsace plain and even the cathedral of Strasbourg.
Halfway between Strasbourg and Colmar, in the Cœur d’Alsace Region, the great sentinel bears a name: The Château du Haut-Kœnigsbourg. It is typical of medieval castle ruins, nestled in the countryside made up of vineyards and forests. Your children will be fascinated by the Volerie des Aigles (a hilltop medieval castle hosting bird-of-prey shows) and the Montagne des Singes (Barbary macaque reservation) in Kintzheim.
Head further south in the direction of the Pays de Colmar, which is full of flat and Vosges mountain landscapes, as well as vineyards inter-dispersed along your route, punctuated by medieval villages. Stop in the village of Riquewihr, the most beautiful village of France, where the very well preserved ramparts surround this vineyard gem. You should also take the time to visit Colmar, a city that you explore by boat, on the canals crossing the city, giving it the nickname of Little Venice. You will be amazed by the half-timbered houses and their balconies adorned with multi-coloured geraniums.
Finally, your adventure comes to a close on the South-Alsace Wine Route, known for its height, where the vines are grown on terraces. Over the kilometres, cyclists and hikers combine exercise and discovery of varied landscapes: Medieval castle ruins, flowery villages, Roman abbeys, undulating vines and winstubs, the famous local wine bars. In these tasting areas there is also a vast range of restaurants and hotels. We should also mention the farms, hostels, local produce markets and charming abodes that punctuate an extraordinary cultural and vinicultural experience.