Published on August 15th, 2014 | by Sylvie Tuaillon2
Sylvie’s Voyages “The Alsace”
As we arrive in Alsace, by crossing the impressive “frontier” from Les Vosges, it seems you aren’t in France anymore. Order and organization is everywhere, but with a Galic charm. But apart from the Rhine in Germany, we do not find any other place with such artistic nonchalance !!! So Alsace was built between two identities : a controlled joyful character, and something else which is between rigor and magical.
The Medieval villages of Alsace compete for beauty: Kaysersberg, Riquewihr, Ribeauville, Obernai, all have surprising and dainty toy-like houses with cheerful colors, and the cobblestone streets with a long history. Between Le Haut and Le Bas-Rhin, the castle of Haut-Koenigsbourg’s ghosts overhang the valley. Mount Saint Odile is a popular place for pilgrimage, as it possesses a source of beneficial water.
You can discover Alsace in springtime: its luxurious nature, its aptly maintained vineyards, enjoy its delicious gold wines such as Cremant, Gewurtztraminer, Musca, Riesling accompanied by strong cheeses : the Munster non-pasteurized milk version, sprinkled with cumin for novices stomachs. In this season too, you will be able to appreciate the pass of floral art by expert arrangers. Every village desires to make it unforgettable. Graceful garlands of flowers on every street corner, on windows, on balconies, a true ornament of nature. They are nested on the roofs of buildings, incredible majestic storks, the symbol of Alsace, with their composed elegance.
You can visit as well in winter time as well, there are open markets at Christmas, that illuminate the premature night fall, one can smell the mulled wine with cinnamon and gingerbread, Christmas’ songs are every where. The pavement is covered with snow, that is twinkling and frosted. In this milieu adults can rediscover their inner child, there are unlimited delights for children.
The city of Colmar is very elegant, as are all cities built between canals. The city takes advantage of this very particular privilege, as it follows the water’s rhythm and curve along the preserved and unreal medieval architecture. As for the prestigious city of Strasbourg, this antique imperial city does not skimp either with the quantity or quality of its incredible heritage !!! The gothic cathedral of Notre-Dame of Strasbourg, is unique as are most cathedrals. Its peculiarity is its astronomical clock. The work of its automatons can be seen at 12:30 pm every day.
The cathedral’s old district is also built around a large river system, it takes you through time : with the locks, the canals with their sudden currents. The colorful buildings : palaces or solid houses have huge roofs, with multiple floors and tiny windows planted in the slates, and seem to invite you to visualize a narrative of Kafka. Streets, bridges, shops with their centuries old metal signs hanging from above their entrances and sculptures on the front, allow you to visit a real open air museum.
Alsace touches you with its generosity, and it reaches the sublime without too much effort.