Must see attractions in Colmar

  • Sights in Colmar

    Petite Venise

    If you see just one thing in Colmar, make it the Little Venice quarter. Canal connection aside, it doesn’t resemble Venice in the slightest, but it's truly lovely in its own right, whether explored on foot or by rowboat. The backstreets are punctuated by impeccably restored half-timbered houses in sugared-almond shades, many ablaze with geraniums in summer. Take a mosey around rue des Tanneurs, with its rooftop verandahs for drying hides, and quai de la Poissonnerie, the former fishers’ quarter.

  • Top ChoiceSights in Colmar

    Musée d’Unterlinden

    Gathered around a Gothic-style Dominican cloister, this revamped museum hides a prized medieval stone statue collection, late-15th-century prints by Martin Schongauer plus an ensemble of Upper Rhine Primitives. Its stellar modern-art collection contains works by Monet, Picasso and Renoir. The star attraction, however, is the late-Gothic Rétable d’Issenheim (Issenheim Altarpiece), by painter Mathias Grünewald and sculptor Nicolas de Haguenau. Hailed as one of the most profound works of faith ever created, the altarpiece realistically depicts New Testament scenes.

  • Sights in Colmar

    Musée Bartholdi

    In the house where Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi was born in 1834, this museum pays homage to the sculptor who captured the spirit of a nation with his Statue of Liberty. Look out for the full-size plaster model of Lady Liberty’s left ear (the lobe is watermelon-sized!) and the Bartholdi family’s sparklingly bourgeois apartment. A ground-floor room shows 18th- and 19th-century Jewish ritual objects.

  • Sights in Colmar

    Église des Dominicains

    Lit by late-medieval stained glass, this desanctified Gothic church shelters the celebrated triptych La Vierge au Buisson de Roses (The Virgin in the Rose Bush), painted by Martin Schongauer in 1473.

  • Sights in Colmar

    Collégiale St-Martin

    Delicate stonework guides the eye to the polychrome mosaic roof and Mongol-style copper spire of this Gothic church. Its jewel-like stained-glass windows cast kaleidoscopic patterns.

  • Sights in Colmar

    Ancienne Douane

    At the southern tip of rue des Marchands is this late-medieval customs house, with loggia and variegated tile roof, which now hosts temporary exhibitions and concerts.

  • Sights in Colmar

    Maison des Têtes

    True to its name, this step-gabled house, built in 1609 for a wealthy wine merchant, is festooned with 106 grimacing faces and heads of animals, devils and cherubs.

  • Sights in Colmar

    Musée du Jouet

    Kids of every age delight at the sight of toys from generations past – from demure 1950s Barbies to Gaultier-clad dolls and Hornby train sets – at this museum.

  • Sights in Colmar

    Pont Rue de Turenne

    For photogenic views of Colmar's canal-woven Petite Venise district, head to this bridge at the top of rue de Turenne.

  • Sights in Colmar

    Statue of Liberty Replica

    Prepare for déjà vu as you approach Colmar on the rte de Strasbourg (N83), 3km north of the old town, and spy the spitting image of the Statue of Liberty, albeit on a smaller scale. Bearing her torch aloft, this 12m-high, copper-green replica was erected to mark the centenary of the death of local lad Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi (1834–1904), creator of the NYC statue.

  • Sights in Colmar

    Église St-Matthieu

    Quintessentially Protestant in its austerity, this Franciscan church has something of a split personality. From 1715 to 1987, a wall divided the soaring 14th-century Gothic choir from the nave. This arrangement allowed the 14th-century jubé (rood screen) to survive the counter-Reformation.

  • Sights in Colmar

    Maison Pfister

    This Renaissance pile was built in 1537 for Ludwig Scherer, a wealthy hatter from Besançon. With its delicately painted panels, elaborate oriel window and carved wooden balcony, it is an immediate attention-grabber.

  • Sights in Colmar

    Maison zum Kragen

    This 15th-century house is identifiable by its much-photographed sculpture of a marchand (merchant).