France Travel Planner by Tom Brosnahan & Jane Fisher   Alsace, France Guide
Contested for centuries, Alsace now enjoys the cultural heritages of both France and Germany, not to mention fertile soil for crops and micro-climates perfect for growing grapes to make excellent wines.




The broad flood-plain of the upper Rhine River valley is a rich agricultural region known as Alsace.

Over the centuries the rival kingdoms and empires of France and Germany have coveted Alsace (Elsass in German) for its agricultural wealth, its ease of transport on the Rhine and Ill rivers, and its military value as a barrier to invasion.

After centuries of conflict, Alsace has come into its own as a symbol of the new Europe. Sharing the cultural richness of both France and Germany, Alsace boasts of its medieval half-timbered houses, its home-grown heroes such as Johannes Gutenberg, and its rich cuisine of sauerkraut and wurst (in French: choucroute et saucisse).

Paddling on a river in Strasbourg
Paddling in the historic Petite France district of Strasbourg...

Every region of France has its distinct personality, but none is as delightfully different from the rest of France as Alsace.

Fast TGV trains can whisk you from Paris to Strasbourg in less than two hours, and to nearby Colmar and its wine-making villages in only a little more, making Alsace a day-trip excursion possibility from Paris.

But to enjoy Alsace fully, you should plan an overnight stay, or one of several days.



Alsace Wine Route





Where to Go in France


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Eguisheim, Colmar, Alsace, France

Wine-growing village of Eguisheim,
near Colmar in Alsace, France.

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