Colmar, a town famous for its charming half-timbered houses and enchanting canals, is one of the most captivating destinations in Alsace.
When I moved to Alsace in 2019, Colmar was among the first places I visited. And, since that initial visit, I’ve come back more times than I can count.
I’ve spent countless hours exploring the museums, streets, and markets.
In this post, I’ve put together the ultimate 2 days in Colmar itinerary. There are popular sites so you can get to know the city and some lesser-known spots.
2 Days in Colmar Overview
If you’re short on time, here is an overview of my helpful guide and a printable itinerary.
- Day 1: Old Town, Maison Pfister, Covered Market, Unterlinden Museum, Parc du Champ de Mars, Gondola Ride
- Day 2: Little Venice, Bartholdi Museum, La Maison des Têtes, Alsace Wine Route
Colmar Itinerary: Day 1
Wander Around the Old Town
There’s no better way to start your trip than by wandering around the picturesque streets of Colmar’s old town.
Stop by Place de l’Ancienne Douane to see the Old Custom House and admire the beautiful architecture.
But my favorite street in this part of Colmar was Grand Rue. I loved the lively atmosphere and the small boutiques.
It’s also where you’ll find the infamous Maison dite “au Pèlerin,” one of the most Instagram-worthy houses in town. I found it particularly stunning during Colmar’s Christmas market.
After you’ve strolled up and down Grand Rue, head to Rue de l’Église. Here you’ll have the best view of Saint-Martin’s Church, a stunning Gothic-style church from the 14th century.
If you have time, I recommend touring the inside. I thought it was as beautiful as the outside.
Visit Maison Pfister
Maison Pfister is one of the most famous buildings in Colmar.
It was built in the 16th century for Ludwig Scherer. From there it changed hands several times before being bought by François Jean Pfister in the mid-19th century.
Its standout features include the overhanging corner bay windows and the artwork etched into the wooden panels.
Even though you can’t explore the inside, I still enjoyed the beautiful architecture and the elaborate frescoes.
Address: 11 Rue des Marchands
Stop by the Covered Market
Colmar’s Marché Couvert or Covered Market was built in 1865, and, since then, it has been a local favorite for its fresh produce, cheese, and wine.
Stop by one of the food stands for a snack or grab some picnic supplies for later.
I must have visited this market more than a dozen times over the years.
While I love the fresh produce, nothing beats the tarte flambée from the little restaurant located at the back. It’s called La Terrasse du Marché and they are always full. If you want to stop by for lunch, get there early or make a reservation.
Address: 13 Rue des Écoles
Discover the Unterlinden Museum
If you’re into art, then the Unterlinden Museum is a must-visit in Colmar. This former convent-turned-museum houses an impressive collection of artworks from the Middle Ages to the 20th century.
Its most famous piece is the Isenheim Altarpiece by Matthias Grünewald. And, of the exhibits, I saw during my visit it was, undoubtedly, the most impressive.
The museum also has a small courtyard where you can relax and take in the peaceful atmosphere.
Address: Place des Unterlinden
Relax in the Parc du Champ de Mars
Parc du Champ de Mars is the perfect spot to take a break. This beautiful public park is located just outside Colmar’s city center.
I’ve been to Parc du Champ Mars dozens of times, and it’s never crowded. I’ve only seen locals enjoying a picnic or tourists passing by on their way to the train station.
During the high season, Colmar can get very busy, so I liked knowing I could come here for a breath of fresh air.
Go on a Gondola Ride
One of the most unique experiences I had in Colmar was taking a gondola ride through the Little Venice area.
This charming neighborhood is lined with colorful half-timbered houses and small winding canals, like those in Venice, Italy.
There are tons of tours available, but I booked mine with Sweet Narcisse.
The gondolas are operated by local guides, so you know you’re getting first-hand information.
I loved the stories that my guide shared, particularly about the architecture and why the houses are so colorful. It was a fun and relaxing way to visit Colmar.
Helpful Tip: Tours last about 25 minutes.
Colmar Itinerary: Day 2
Watch the Sunrise over Little Venice
If there’s one thing Colmar is known for its colorful half-timbered houses. And the best place to see them is the Little Venice district at sunrise.
On one of my many weekends in Colmar, I woke up early and headed straight for Quai de la Poissonnerie.
The streets were empty, and the sun’s glow lit up the canals and houses in a beautiful golden light. It was magical.
Helpful Tip: The bridge on Rue de Turenne is another great spot to watch the sunrise.
Explore the Bartholdi Museum
Another must-visit museum in Colmar is the Bartholdi Museum. It’s dedicated to the life and works of famous sculptor, Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi.
Aside from learning about his most famous work – the Statue of Liberty, you’ll also get to see some of his other sculptures, drawings, and paintings.
One of the most interesting parts of the visit, for me at least, was the house itself. This is where Bartholdi was born, and I loved seeing what life was like during his time.
Address: 30 Rue des Marchands
Admire La Maison des Têtes
La Maison des Têtes or “House of Heads” is one of the most striking buildings in Colmar. It’s named after the heads that decorate its façade – over 100 in total.
Built in the early 1600s, it has a mix of Renaissance and Baroque architecture.
It was once nothing more than a mansion, but now, it’s home to a luxury hotel, a traditional brasserie, and a Michelin-starred restaurant.
Of the architecturally interesting buildings I’ve seen in Alsace, La Maison des Têtes was by far the most unique.
Address: 19 Rue des Têtes
Explore the Alsace Wine Route
The activities I mentioned above shouldn’t take long, which means you’ll have plenty of time to explore the infamous Alsace Wine Route.
The route stretches over 170 kilometers (105 miles) and passes through some of the most picturesque villages in France. You can join a tour, travel by train, walk, or rent a car or bike.
Each village has its charm and unique atmosphere, and there are quite a few near Colmar that are worth adding to your itinerary.
My two favorites are Turckheim and Eguisheim.
Both are stunningly beautiful and are full of things to do. I loved walking around Turckheim, particularly the Jardin de la Ville and enjoyed hiking to Eguisheim’s three castles.
Where to Stay
There are tons of fantastic places to stay in Colmar. But, for this itinerary, I recommend staying somewhere central, so you don’t waste time getting to and from your hotel.
The Little Venice district and the Old Town are the two best areas for short stays. Below is a list of hotels that I recommend.
✓ Hotel Restaurant Le Maréchal – Les Collectionneurs – This four-star hotel is in the heart of Little Venice. The breakfast is incredible and the staff are helpful. You can even request a room that looks out onto the canal.
✓ Hotel Saint-Martin – This was the best hotel I stayed at in Colmar. It’s located in the Old Town, so you’ll be close to everything. The breakfast is delicious and the rooms are cozy.
✓ Hotel Le Colombier Suites – Located in Little Venice, the rooms are immaculate and the staff are very helpful. They even have air-conditioning in the summer.
Where to Eat
There are tons of fantastic places to eat in Colmar. Here are a few restaurants that I recommend you try while you’re here.
✓ Wistub de la Petite Venise – A traditional restaurant with an upscale feel. The food is delicious and the setting is rustic.
✓ Bistrot des Lavandières – A cozy restaurant that serves local dishes made with local products. Of the places I’ve eaten at in Colmar, this was my favorite.
✓ Brasserie des Tanneurs – This is one of the most famous traditional Alsatian restaurants in town. The food is tasty, and the interior is inviting.
Helpful Tip: Restaurants in Colmar fill up fast, so I recommend making reservations at least the day before.
Conclusion: Colmar 2-Day Itinerary
A two-day trip to Colmar offers the perfect blend of scenic beauty, cultural heritage, and delicious cuisine.
This little Alsatian town is one of the most picturesque I’ve visited. From its cobblestone streets to its winding canals, it really does look like something from a fairytale.
Now that you know how to organize your weekend in Colmar, it’s time to start planning your trip. And why not start with booking your tickets? Here are a few websites that I recommend, specifically for traveling in France.
Read More Articles About France
I hope you enjoyed my post and found it useful. Here are some other articles that I think you might find interesting.
- Strasbourg to Colmar: How to Get There (from a Local)
- 4 Days in Alsace: The Perfect Itinerary (from a Local)
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