Top Reasons to Visit Alsace in 2013
2013 : 60th anniversary of Alsace Wine Route
Officially established as a touristic route in 1953, the Alsace Wine Route meanders through 170km, from the North all the way to the South of the Region. From valleys to vineyards, it passes about 70 wine-making villages where thousands of winemakers open the doors to their wineries to share their passion of wine. Wine paths, welcoming and warm winstubs, wine tastings and more fill the road, inviting visitors to discover the wide range of Alsacian wines. All year round, Alsace will oversee a festive calendar that will honor the Alsace Wine Route and its divine landscapes. An exceptional event is being organized to take you far away from the hustle and bustle of the city and into the serenity of the vineyards.
At the crossroads of Rhineland and French influence, Alsace museums invite you to discover their rich heritage, from prehistoric times to contemporary arts. It is possible to discover works from sculptors such as Nicolas Gerhaerdt de Leyde or August Bartholdi, painters such as Grünewald or Gustave Doré as well as typical Renaissance art like the famous retable of Issenheim. The region also boasts an automotive museum featuring automotive designer Ettore Bugatti. Mulhouse, the European Capital for technical museums, hosts a museum of cloth printing, a train museum and the EDF Electropolis museum.
Alsace is a gastronomic destination, where convivial meals are ubiquitous, boasting such local dishes as the famous tarte flambée, sauerkraut and baeckeoffe. The goose and duck Foie Gras is a classic dish to have on any Alsacian table, especially during Christmas time. As a matter of fact, Foie Gras was first created in Alsace in 1778.
Christmas time in Alsace
Each year, a world of legends, rites, myths, odors and senteurs come to Alsace. The whole region welcomes a new enchanting atmosphere starting from November 25th, Saint Catherine day. It lasts over the 4 weeks before Christmas – Advent time – until the apotheosis of Christmas, finally ending on January 6 for the Epiphany.
More than 120 Christmas markets fill the South and North of the region. Each boasts its own traditional and unique ambiance and specialty. In total, there are over 70 unique Alsacian cities and villages that each have their own distinct magical ambiance. Even more, about one thousand exceptional festivals, shows and events take place around the region during this festive period.
Alsace, Europe memory
A land that has been desired by many throughout history, Alsace holds a particular place in History books. From 1870 to 1945, no less than 3 wars tore apart this strategic region. Some locations are marked for life. Walk on the territory where french and prussian troupes fought in 1870. Imagine the difficulty of being in the Vieil Armand trenches during the Great War, World War I. Alsace remembers these victims at the European Centre of Deported Resistance Members, the Struthof, the only concentration camp on the French floor in 1941, as well as at the Memorial of Alsace-Moselle, which retraces Alsace and Moselle History from 1870 until the French-German reconciliation and the European construction.