France : Alsace

Villages & Vineyards of Alsace

Trip code: W06AS 4.4 (7 reviews)

Self-guided walking

6 nights,
hotel-to-hotel

Level: 2
Moderate

9.0Kg CO2e

Headwater
Navigation App

SUMMARY

  • Easy walking through vineyards, ancient oak forest and unspoilt flower-filled medieval villages
  • Romantic castles, Gothic churches and panoramic views towards the Vosges mountains and Black Forest
  • A perfect blend of French and German influences with fabulous local cuisine and varied wines

WHAT'S INCLUDED?

  • 6 nights accommodation
  • All breakfast and 5 evening meals
  • Headwater navigation app
  • Luggage transfers between hotels
  • Walking Transfer
  • Train journey from Selestat to Colmar

TRIP DESCRIPTION

Wedged between the Vosges Mountains and the River Rhine, Alsace is a mosaic of rolling hills, mountains and plains dotted with chateaux, vineyards and candy-coloured towns and villages with storybook appeal. It's a region of centuries-old traditions, rich gastronomy and world-class wine .

Alsace is home to rich and fabulous cuisine. Grab a table at a 'winstub' (a traditional Alsatian restaurant) and try local dishes such as 'baeckeoffe' (a casserole of lamb or beef with potatoes and onions, marinated overnight in Alsatian white wine infused with juniper berries), or 'tarte flambee/flammekueche',a thin pizza-like creation with creme fraiche, onions and lardons. 'Sauerkraut'(pickled cabbage) is also iconic, widely celebrated in Alsatian villages and eaten with various types of sausage.

Alsace is a well-known white wine region boasting several Grands Crus vineyards, and every village, no matter their size, will have a 'cave' or 'degustation' to visit. The Alsace Wine Route and Alsatian Wines reveals the secrets and flavours of the sylvaner, pinot blanc, noir or gris, riesling and gewurztraminer, not forgetting the beer and brasseries.

Along the way you will pass through some of the most beautiful villages in France; Colmar, Kaysersberg and Riquewihr, with their brightly-coloured, half-timbered buildings decked with window boxes spilling with geraniums and traditional ornamental features.

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DAY-BY-DAY ITINERARY

 

Day 1: Arrive in Colmar

Explore this picturesque town with half-timbered houses, romantic canals, flower-laden windowsills and a labyrinth of cobblestone lanes. Visit the scenic Fishmongers' Quarter or 'Little Venice', the Tanners' Quarter and the Place de L'Ancienne Douane. Discover plenty of shops and a covered market before you sample the fabulous local cuisine.

You stay at Hotel Turenne.

hotel details

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Hotel Turenne, Colmar

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Hotel Turenne, located in the Petite Venise district of Colmar, combines the Alsatian charm of its colourful facade with exposed studs with the modernity and sobriety of its rooms.

Extra nights: Please contact us for details.

Day 2: Colmar - Riquewihr (18km/11.2mi)

A short transfer will lead you to Turckheim. Explore the Renaissance church and medieval gate where storks nest. Pass through the fortified town of Kaysersberg. Elected the favourite village of France in 2017, you'll see why when you walk along its fortified bridge and through its medieval streets that lead up to the castle.

Continue to Riquewihr. This town is so enchanting it's been declared an historic monument in its entirety. You'll be fascinated by its cobbled alleys, galleried courtyards, fountains and colourful signboards. Riquewihr is an important wine centre, its two Grand Crus are 'Sporen' and 'Schoenenbourg'.

You stay at Hotel de la Couronne.

hotel details



Hotel de la Couronne, Riquewihr

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The Hotel de la Couronne is an historical building from the 16th century. Originally the buildings contained a post house, and already in those days, travellers and their mounts found refuge and warmth during their journeys. Located in the heart of the Alsatian medieval village of Riquewihr, the rooms are contemporary and Alsatian style.

Day 3: Riquewihr - St Hippolyte (18km/11.2mi)

Walk through the vineyards to Ribeauville, a medieval village dominated by three chateaux. Each September Ribeauville town celebrates one of the oldest festivals in Alsace; the Fete des Menetriers (Festival of the Minstrels). In the 8th century, Ribeauville was passed to the Lord of Rappolstein (the protector of the wandering minstrels). If you look carefully, you will see evidence of the Piper.

Then, explore Saint Hippolyte. Famous for its Pinot Noir, you will have plenty of opportunities for wine tastings. Stroll along the fortified city wall and the stork's tower.

You stay at Hostellerie Munsch.

hotel details

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Hostellerie Munsch, St Hippolyte

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Hostellierie Munsch is ideally located in the heart of the vineyards of Alsace, at the foot of the castle of Haut-Koenigsbourg.

Day 4: At St Hippolyte (14km/8.7mi)

Day devoted to the amazing Chateau of Haut Koenigsbourg perched on mountain summits offering spectacular panoramic views of the Alsatian countryside towards the Vosges mountains and the Black Forest. The Haut-Koenigsbourg’s beautifully refined rooms are decorated with mural paintings, Renaissance furniture and enormous cast-iron stoves – and there’s an impressive collection of weaponry from the Middle Ages in the basement. Towering at 757m above picture-perfect villages and colourful vineyards, it’s one of France’s most visited castles.

Day 5: St Hippolyte - Itterswiller (19km/11.8mi)

Transfer to Chatenois. Discover local historic testimonies with ruins such the Castle of Ramstein, the rear base of which you can reach in a few steps, is worth the detour. Further on, another striking building, Ortenbourg castle : Built in the 12th century by the Habsburgs, the military fortress is immediately recognisable by its impressive 32-meter dungeon.

Continue through the Bernstein forest before reaching Itterswiller a pretty wine village on the 'Route des Vins'.

You stay at Hotel Winstub Arnold.

hotel details



Hotel Winstub Arnold, Itterswiller

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The Hotel Arnold is located in the village of Itterswiller, at the foot of the Vosges Mountains. Hotel Arnold’s restaurant is located across the street. La Winstub, a former wine cellar, serves home-made dishes and regional cuisine made from local, seasonal produce.

Day 6: At Itterswiller (12km/7.5mi)

On today’s walk, visit the remarkable Romanesque abbey-church of Andlau surrounded by forest and vines. Continue through The Grands Crus wine villages. Lastly, stop at Landlau castle where you'll be amazed by its two majestic towers and the restoration work carried out by volunteers. Enjoy wonderful panoramas there.

Day 7: Leave Itterswiller

Transfer to Selestat train station and train journey to Colmar.

Extending your holiday

If you'd like to extend your trip with extra hotel nights we recommend: Hotel Turenne, Colmar.

hotel details



Hotel Turenne, Colmar

HOTEL WEBSITE      TRIP ADVISOR

Mastercard
Visa
AmEx
Hairdryer
WiFi
TV
Aircon
Safe
Tea/coffee


Hotel Turenne, located in the Petite Venise district of Colmar, combines the Alsatian charm of its colourful facade with exposed studs with the modernity and sobriety of its rooms.

Extra nights: Please contact us for details.

CHOOSE A DEPARTURE DATE

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These tour only prices are based on two people sharing. Single supplement from £394.

These flight inclusive prices are based on two people sharing. Single supplement from £394.

TRAVEL DETAILS

Our aim is to provide holidays that are unbeatable for choice and flexibility. We've listed our most popular travel options below, however you aren't limited to these - we can tailor-make virtually any holiday to suit.

Air-rail prices include our standard flights and onward rail

Alternative transfers
If you require alternative transfers (because you will be arriving at a different time to our standard flights), then we can usually arrange these for you (there may be an additional charge).

To find out more about the travel options available call our sales team on 01606 720199, use our live webchat (we're open until 4pm today) or email sales@headwater.com

Should you require overnight airport accommodation, airport parking or even a uniformed chauffeur to take your car from your departure terminal and park it for you, we can arrange this for you through Holiday Extras. You can book airport parking, airport hotels and executive lounges through their website or contact us for further details. Early booking is recommended to obtain the best availability and prices.

REVIEWS

Very enjoyable holiday in the Alsace, beautiful region of France. Lovely medieval villages and vineyards. We found some of the walking more than ‘easy walking’ . Not a problem for us but could be misleading for someone expecting something less demanding. Hotels and food very good and excellent except one hotel we found below standard and were disappointed with it. Some of the villages were deserted and nowhere to stop for a drink or to buy food so make sure you take food and drink with you on walks. Some places and bus driver from Basel airport to train station only take cash.

Linda Sellers, 21 Jun 2024

 

Excellent customer service, detailed communication and well thought out itinerary that enabled us to get the most out of chosen destination.



Natasha Lara Pettet, 17 Jun 2024

 

Good experience - loved the fact that it was not a touristy place and we were encountering French/German culture on the borders the 2 countries. the wine was fantastic too and the walks thru the forests were excellent - great boulangeries to pick up a picnic.

Ian Crookall, 10 May 2024

 

This was our first holiday of this type, we loved the freedom of travelling unguided. The route guidance was excellent and the difficulty and daily distances were just perfect for someone with average walking fitness. The hotels were tremendous, being perfectly located and we could not fault service, food or anything else. The walks were truly superb, blending wonderful strolls through the area's vineyards and gentle climbs through the forests of the foothills. The routes were really well way-marked and so it was easy to navigate. The walks passed through ancient villages and Chateaus and there really were no sections that were anything but breath-taking. Our personal stopover highlights were Riquewihr, a fabulous medieval walled village, and Itterswiller, a tiny village surrounded by rolling vineyards. We will definitely be returning to France again with Headwater.

Robert Salsbury, 1 Sep 2023

 

Overall very good, we have used your company many times over the years and have always enjoyed our holidays . This trip was slightly let down by our stay in Riquewihr as the restaurant was terrible and really left us with negative view of that part of the trip . Fortunately we have never experienced this on any of your previous trips and I suspect might be due to the subcontractor.

Nigel Kirk, 1 Jul 2023

 

The itinerary was tougher than we expected for the moderate description so we will be more cautious in future. If using trains, we would recommend buying tickets on the day so you can catch the most suitable one as the ones suggested by the agent involved a lot of unnecessary waiting around and changes. However, the walking was through beautiful countryside and we visited some lovely towns and villages. A very enjoyable holiday.

DURANT, 29 May 2023

 

Great part of France to visit - pretty villages, acres of vineyards and hotels off the beaten track. During the week we covered over 10,000 feet elevation - more than Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike,, Snowdon put together in 5 days walking. The combination of forest walks and vineyards was excellent arriving into villages. Most of the villages have a baker’s shop and cafe, but remember most places closed after 14:00. Not always easy to find lunch, so be sure to take your lunch before you set off.

Mrs Stewart, 6 Jun 2022

 


Self-guided walking

6 nights,
hotel-to-hotel

Level: 2
Moderate

9.0Kg CO2e

Headwater
Navigation App

6 nights from £1499

CHOOSE A DEPARTURE

Call: 01606 720199

 

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