Located in the heart of France’s Alsace region, Colmar brims with fairytale charm and romance. Known for its cobblestone streets, half-timbered houses, and winding canals, Colmar is a picture-perfect destination for anyone seeking a romantic getaway.
Whether you’re planning a trip with your significant other, or looking to pop the question, there are plenty of romantic activities and sights to make your trip unforgettable. Here is your complete guide to a romantic getaway in Colmar.
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15 Romantic Things to Do in Colmar
There’s no denying that Colmar has a ton of things to do, but this guide is for couples looking for a romantic getaway.
The activities below are the most romantic things to do in this cute Alsatian town.
1. Gondola Ride on the Lauch River
No romantic trip to Colmar would be complete without a gondola ride down the Lauch River.
This quintessential experience will take you through the heart of the city. You’ll get to see the most beautiful half-timbered houses, many of which aren’t accessible on foot, and bridges covered in flowers. It feels like you’re in a real-life fairytale.
Private tours are not available, but you can avoid the crowds if you go early in the morning or late in the evening.
2. Picnic in Parc du Champ de Mars
Parc du Champs de Mars is a peaceful park, perfect for a romantic picnic. Pack a basket with local treats like fresh baguettes, cheeses, fruit, and, of course, a bottle of Alsace wine.
Settle on a grassy spot under one of the trees and enjoy the scenery. In summer, the park is full of flowers and lush greenery, while in the fall, the changing colors make for a beautiful backdrop.
Useful Tip: Colmar’s Covered Market has everything you’ll need for your picnic.
3. Bike through the Vineyards
Surrounding Colmar are the vineyards of the Alsace wine region. And there’s no better way to visit them than by bike.
These well-marked, paved biking paths wind through charming towns, passing centuries-old vineyards. And now and then they open to gorgeous panoramic vistas.
You can rent bikes in Colmar and follow the Alsace Wine Route stopping at wineries along the way for tastings.
Three of the prettiest villages in Alsace (Kaysersberg, Eguisheim, and Turckheim) are all within biking distance and easy to reach from Colmar.
4. Stroll through Petite Venise at Sunset
Strolling through Petite Venise tops the list of activities in Colmar. But what makes it romantic is experiencing it at sunset.
This charming neighborhood is full of pastel-colored half-timbered houses lining the canal, creating a perfect setting for a romantic walk.
The most spectacular street is Quai de la Poissonnerie, but the view of the Lauch River from Rue de Turenne is also beautiful. Adding to the charm are the quaint cafes and restaurants where you can stop for a cozy meal or a nightcap.
5. Explore the Christmas Market
From late November to the end of December, Colmar transforms into a magical wonderland. The Old Town is decorated with twinkling lights, charming wooden chalets, and festive ornaments. There’s an irresistible aroma of cinnamon, cloves, and roasting chestnuts in the air.
It’s here that you’ll find countless opportunities to create cherished memories. Stroll hand-in-hand through the cobblestone streets, admire the beautiful decorations, sip hot mulled wine, or browse local crafts. You won’t find a more romantic setting this time of year.
6. Have a Spa Day
Having a spa day in Colmar is a luxurious way to relax, rejuvenate, and connect with your partner.
There are a variety of top-rated spa resorts that cater to couples seeking a romantic getaway, but the best is L’Esquisse Hotel & Spa.
They have an indoor pool, a sauna, a Jacuzzi, a steam room, and a gym, providing the perfect setting for a day of relaxation and intimacy.
You don’t have to stay at the hotel to have access to the spa, but some services are reserved for guests only. So, if you want to splurge a little, this is the perfect place to do it.
7. Take a Day Trip to the Château du Haut-Koenigsbourg
Just a short drive from Colmar is the stunning Château du Haut-Koenigsbourg.
Over the years, it’s undergone massive restorations to bring it back to its former glory.
Today, it offers unencumbered views of the countryside, making it a perfect destination for a romantic day trip. Explore the castle’s ramparts, towers, and gardens while learning its fascinating history.
At the end of the tour, you can take in the sweeping panoramas from the high terrace with your loved one by your side.
8. Wine Tasting
Colmar sits in the heart of Alsace’s wine country, so, of course, a wine tasting is an absolute must-do for couples visiting. The region offers some of the country’s best white wines, renowned for their aromatic, floral, and spicy notes.
You can take a scenic bike ride or a leisurely drive along the Alsace Wine Route, which hosts over a hundred wineries. But there are also several places in Colmar that offer wine tastings. A popular choice is the Domaine Martin Jund, where you can sample Grand Cru wines in a stunning setting.
9. Ride in a Hot Air Balloon
If you’re looking for the most unique and unforgettable experience, riding in a hot air balloon over Colmar is it. You’ll float above the winding canals and rolling vineyards all while enjoying breathtaking views of the region. The best time to fly is at dawn.
You’ll take off as the sun rises over the picturesque landscapes and when you’re finished, you’ll celebrate with a glass of bubbly. It’s a magical and romantic setting from the beginning to the end.
Flights are offered throughout the year but depend on the weather. So, it’s best to book your flight early and leave an extra day in case it rains.
10. Lunch in a Traditional Brasserie
Colmar’s traditional brasseries serve some of the most delicious Alsatian cuisine. Their rustic interiors are cozy, and their candlelit tables add that extra touch of romance.
Most dishes like choucroute garnie are quite hearty, but when you pair it with a glass of Alsatian wine, the flavor combinations will blow you away.
You’ll find several traditional places to eat around Colmar, but the most famous is Brasserie des Tanneurs. Its interior is warm and welcoming, and the outside has the cutest decorations in town. The desserts are even served on heart-shaped plates.
11. Create your own Chocolates at the Choco-Story Museum
If you and your partner share a love for chocolate, the Choco-Story Museum is a must-visit. This unique museum tells the delicious story of chocolate, tracing its journey from the cacao bean to specialty shops in Europe. You’ll even learn about its history and role in Mayan and Aztec civilizations.
But the highlight is the hands-on chocolate-making workshop.
You’ll learn all about the art of chocolate making from a master chocolatier, and then, make your own chocolates to take home.
12. Take a Scenic Drive on the Route des Cinq Châteaux
Driving along the Route des Cinq Châteaux is perfect for couples who like history, architecture, or the beauty of the French countryside.
This route, also known as ‘the road of the five castles,’ winds through the hills just outside of Colmar. It passes five castles including Château de Pflixbourg, Château du Hohlandsbourg, and Les Trois Châteaux d’Eguisheim (The Three Castles of Eguisheim). Each played a role in Alsace’s history and has a unique story.
But the most impressive among them is Château du Hohlandsbourg. It’s one of the largest fortified castles in the region and the views from its terrace look out over Colmar.
There are even picnic benches where you can enjoy a packed lunch.
13. Have Breakfast in Bed at a Charming Hotel
To round off your romantic escapade in Colmar, treat yourselves to a delightful breakfast in bed at one of the charming hotels. It’s a leisurely start to your day, filled with fresh pastries, hot coffee, and Alsatian cheeses.
Some of the most romantic places to stay are La Maison des Têtes – Relais & Châteaux, James Boutique Hotel, and Le Colombier. Each one offers beautiful rooms in an intimate setting. It’s a chance to slow down and enjoy your well-deserved vacation.
14. Shop for Antiques
Strolling through the cobblestone streets of Colmar, you’ll find a treasure trove of antique stores. From vintage furniture to delicate porcelain, there’s something for every collector. Or you can just browse for a souvenir.
Antiquites – Brocante is one of the most known places to shop for antiques. But Antiquités Guy Cafard and Antiquités Fontaine Christophe also have a wide collection.
Then, there’s the flea market at Place des Dominicains. It takes place every Friday and is a great place to take in the local culture while you shop.
15. Enjoy Dinner on the Canal
To cap off a romantic day in Colmar, nothing beats a dinner date on the canal. There are several restaurants that offer alfresco dining options. But the most popular are Les Bateliers and Bord’eau Restaurant.
As the sun sets, the lights from the nearby half-timbered houses reflect off the water, creating a magical atmosphere.
The menus boast a fusion of traditional Alsatian cuisine and contemporary dishes, with an impressive wine list showcasing the region’s best vintages. Just be sure to make a reservation before you go because spots fill up quickly.
Colmar, with its charming canals and picturesque half-timbered houses, is a city full of romance. Whether it’s a leisurely morning enjoying breakfast in bed or a treasure hunt through an antique shop, there are tons of romantic things to do here.
So, pack your bags, grab your loved one, and get ready to fall in love all over again in this fairytale-like city.
Author Bio: Jen Ciesielski is the creator of Dabbling in Jet Lag, a blog focused on traveling and living in France. Her goal is to inspire others to get off the beaten path and explore some of the lesser-known places. On Dabbling in Jet Lag, she shares her experience as an expat in France as well as the best things to do around the country.