Christmas holidays in sight and still few ideas on where to spend them? In the heart of Alsace, in France, there is a truly characteristic city in the Christmas period. In the world of tourism it has become a very popular destination, an undisputed merit of its own special Christmas markets to which are added incredible lights and a series of themed events.
We are talking about Colmar, a picturesque place made of half-timbered houses and canals, so much so that one of its neighborhoods in particular recalls our Venice.
Are you curious to visit it? Here is a series of information for spending Christmas in Colmar: offers, programs and advice!
- Plan your Christmas in Colmar: flights, hotels and All Inclusive packages
- Tickets, tours and bookable activities
- What to do: events and activities
- What to see in Colmar at Christmas
- Climate and useful info
- User questions and comments
Covid-19 emergency: events, concerts and demonstrations could undergo last-minute changes due to the Coronavirus pandemic. We recommend that you inform yourself well about the situation of the destination you intend to visit before departure. If you are planning a trip, follow government guidelines and make sure you are in line with safety measures.
Plan your Christmas in Colmar: flights, hotels and All Inclusive packages
Colmar is a very touristic city and the cost of living is quite high as a result don't expect a cheap vacation.
From Italy you can find low cost flights (around € 50,00) to Strasbourg and then reach Colmar by train, otherwise having little time you can fly to Mulhouse with a stopover in Strasbourg or Paris, but this solution is more expensive (around € 400,00).
To stay, the best and most characteristic areas are obviously the central ones like Petite Venise but certainly more expensive than more distant areas such as the station or the Saint Leon district. In any case, the accommodations start from € 50,00 per night (standard room and without breakfast), while to add meals you will have to consider at least € 100,00 per night.
In the historic center you can easily get around on foot, but you can also travel very well with the efficient TRACE buses and the ecological and economical bike sharing. We also recommend the purchase of the Colmar City Pass for free access to various attractions (including the train and boats).
Christmas offers in Colmar: Flight + 4 nights in hotel
- for Mulhouse from € 449,00; to Strasbourg from € 138,00
- Hotel and b & b starting from € 50,00 per room -
- return flight + 5 days / 4 nights from € 476,00 -
Tickets, tours and bookable activities
What to do: events and activities
Certainly in a city like this, which at Christmas is enriched with greater charm, there is no shortage of events and activities related to the Christmas holidays. Here are some ideas for your stay in Colmar at Christmas!
1 - Tour of the Colmar Christmas Markets
The Colmar Tourist Board offers daily from 11:00 to 17:00 guided tours of about an hour among all the exhibition squares to discover local crafts and gastronomy with in-depth explanations on origins and processes, giving you the time to make any purchases which are absolutely not mandatory.
The price of the tour is € 5,00 for adults and € 2,50 for children between 12 and 18, while it is free for children under 12. To book one of these guided tours, just contact the tourist office on Place des Unterlinden, or you can book your private tour online.
If you prefer visit the markets independently, here are the timetables: from Monday to Thursday 10: 00-19: 00, from Friday to Sunday 10: 00-20: 00, 24 December 10: 00-17: 00, 25 December 14: 00-19: 00.
2 - Green Tourist Train
Looking for information on Christmas you will surely have come across some image of a green train: it is the tourist train of Colmar, an alternative way to visit the historic center!
The guided tour lasts 35 minutes and takes place in 16 languages. The meeting point is in Via Kléber and from there we leave for a 7 km tour of the picturesque streets of the city, you can admire the particular buildings and the main attractions such as the Collegiate Church of San Martino, the Unterlinden Museum, the Antica Dogana and Casa Pfister.
The cost is € 7,00 for adults and € 3,50 for children, and reservations are recommended during peak periods such as Christmas!
3 - Boat trip to Petite Venise
The city is famous for little Venice, a district crossed by a canal navigable on which boat tours are inevitably offered.
A tour costs € 6,00 per person and lasts about 30 minutes during which you will pass under several bridges and admire the half-timbered houses on both sides of the canal with their perfect architecture, the most disparate colors and cheerfully decorated balconies.
During the tour you will meet several signs asking for the courtesy to be quiet as the area is obviously inhabited by citizens, but this is a plus to fully enjoy the tour in peace and relaxation.
At Christmas in this neighborhood the children's village is set up with games, workshops and activities of various kinds.
4 - Ice skating
In the heart of the historic center, precisely in Place Rapp, one is set up every Christmas large skating rink of 800 square meters.
Whether you are passionate, expert, amateur or it's your first time on the ice, the rink is open to everyone, every day from 11:00 in the morning with variable closing between 17:00 and 19:00 depending on the day, at cost of € 7,00 which includes admission and skate rental, while if you are already equipped, the entrance costs € 4,50.
There are also various reductions based on age and for families, but also season tickets if you want to go skating several times.
The track also offers Christmas-themed musical entertainment accompanied by the splendid lights all around, and during its opening period it hosts several private events like bubble rain or snow storm.
5 - Christmas concerts
During the Christmas period, several concerts are scheduled, such as the Christmas concert in the church of San Matteo which offers sacred passages to popular passages from different religions and countries; or even the Children's Boat Concert held on the canals of the Petite Venise, with illuminated boats crossing the neighborhood with a choir of children on board singing the best Christmas songs.
What to see in Colmar at Christmas
Colmar, for its buildings, colors and the shape of the historic center, is a town that is perfectly suited to Christmas where the atmosphere is typical of the holidays.
The Petite Venise district, very suggestive and picturesque, the colorful structures and the typical half-timbered architecture are perfectly in tune with the Christmas decorations.
To make the atmosphere perfect, thanks to the collaboration of the inhabitants, are the installations in all the streets of the historic center, themed exhibitions, fabulous lighting and the famous Christmas markets, the latter with different positions in the various squares and all connected to each other by a series of lights.
Here are some of the must-see attractions in Colmar at Christmas!
- Little Venice
- The Old Customs House
- The Dominican Church
- The Musée d'Unterlinden
- The Collegiate Church of San Martino
- Bartholdi Museum
- The covered market
- Pfister House
Climate and useful info
- Weather: it is semi-continental, characterized by cold winters with several rainy days and frequent snowfalls, even if not abundant. During the Christmas period, temperatures fluctuate between 0 and 6 ° C
- has a small domestic airport not directly connected to the Italian cities, but to the French ones, so you will have to make a stopover in France, usually in Paris. Alternatively, you can land in Strasbourg using Ryanair flights (about 2 hours) and then travel with a train of the national SNCF company (1 hour, about € 13,60). Starting from Milan there is also the option of the Flixbus (from € 30,00) or the train with change in Basel (from € 80,00)
- Getting around: the center can be visited on foot, while the best means to move a little longer are by bike and by bus. Bike rental for a full day costs € 8,00. The buses are managed by the TRACE company, which offers many routes and an efficient service. A single ticket is valid for 90 minutes and costs € 1,40
- Useful passes and cards: the purchase of the Colmar City Pass is recommended, which allows free access to various attractions in the city and includes a boat ride and a tour on the tourist train. It lasts 7 days and costs € 32,00 for adults, € 28,00 for children between 9 and 17 years, free up to 8 years
- Average cost of Christmas dinner: around € 100,00 per person for a good restaurant