Visiting Colmar was the reason we started planning this trip. I had been to the Alsace area and stayed in the Colmar area a few times as kid when we lived in England. Sometimes when my dad had to travel to Colmar we’d all come along. Since my husband and I enjoyed the Normandy area so much we decided to explore the Alsace area next.
Unfortunately we couldn’t stay in Colmar, we stayed in Strasbourg. On our drive into Colmar we went by the Colmar location of the company where my dad worked. It was so strange to see a piece of home in the middle of France! Adding to the weird was the Statue of Liberty in the middle of the roundabout in front of the company! Ok, that’s not so weird; I’ll explain why that’s normal in a minute.
We found our way to the parking lot in town and started out on another city walk. At this point we were kind of tired of these walks, and embarked on this walk half-heartedly. One thing we noticed right away were arrows in the sidewalk with Statues of Liberties on them pointing toward town. We decided to follow them instead of taking the city walk.
As we walked into town we walked by Bartholdi’s home – who is Bartholdi? He designed and sculpted the Statue of Liberty! There are several statues around town that he designed and carved, and fun fact, most of them have one arm extended just like Lady Liberty.
We found our way into the town center and over to Petite Venice. Colmar lives up to its reputation. It is charming, it has a canal running thought the middle of it, flowers are abundant, and the buildings are colorful half-timbered buildings. We loved walking around town.
Eventually we got hungry and found a café along the canal serving the local specialty, tarte flambee. I had the traditional one – crème fraiche, onions, and bacon coupled with a cider that went down very easy. My husband added gruyere cheese to his traditional tarte flambee along with a beer. This was a great lunch.
In addition to looking at sights, eating and drinking, we also did some shopping and visited the Unterlinden Museum and the museum in Bartholdi’s home. The top floor is dedicated to the Statue of Liberty. It is interesting to look at all of the sketches and comparing where he started to what the Statue is today. They also have a sample of her ear in the museum. I would guess it is six feet tall! We have visited the Statue, but it was something else to be “up close and personal” with her ear.
We visited Colmar twice during our time in the Alsace. We loved walking the streets, looking at the décor on the half-timbered houses, eating the ice cream, trying the food, and drinking the wine (cider for me). It’s a shame we couldn’t stay in Colmar, but we certainly made sure we had the Colmar experience during our visits.