Nestled in the Alsace region of France, the picturesque town of Colmar is an exceptional destination for art and architecture enthusiasts. Known for its well-preserved medieval and Renaissance buildings, beautiful canals, and vibrant cultural scene, Colmar offers a delightful blend of history, creativity, and charm. This article will take you on a journey through the creative side of Colmar, showcasing its artistic treasures and architectural gems that make it a must-visit destination for all art and architecture lovers.

The Unterlinden Museum

Address: 1 Rue Unterlinden, 68000 Colmar, France

One of the most iconic cultural institutions in Colmar, the Unterlinden Museum never fails to captivate visitors with its remarkable collection of art and historical artifacts. Housed in a former 13th-century Dominican convent, this museum boasts an impressive range of artworks, from medieval to contemporary pieces. The highlight of the collection is the Isenheim Altarpiece by Matthias Grünewald, a masterpiece of German Renaissance art renowned for its exquisite details and emotional intensity. The museum’s architecture itself is a gem, blending the old and the new seamlessly, with a modern extension designed by architects Herzog & de Meuron.

The Unterlinden Museum is not just a feast for the eyes; it also provides a great learning experience for visitors. Through its permanent and temporary exhibitions, the museum offers insightful perspectives on various art movements, historical periods, and cultural influences. The preserved cloister and outdoor space are particularly enchanting, providing a tranquil setting to reflect on the profound artistic creations on display. From murals and sculptures to paintings and decorative arts, the Unterlinden Museum is a true reflection of Colmar’s rich artistic heritage.

The Koïfhus

Address: Grand Rue, 68000 Colmar, France

As you wander through the picturesque streets of Colmar, you will stumble upon the Koïfhus, a historic building that once served as the city’s customs warehouse. This magnificent edifice showcases Colmar’s architectural beauty and its significant role as a trading hub in the past. Built in the 15th century, the Koïfhus is an excellent example of Gothic architecture, with its imposing facade featuring intricate stone carvings and towering spires.

Today, the Koïfhus is home to the Chamber of Commerce and Industry, but its historical importance is still palpable. The building stands as a reminder of Colmar’s prosperous mercantile past, offering a glimpse into the town’s vibrant trading history. Step inside to explore the interior courtyard, adorned with charming half-timbered houses and arcades. The combination of architectural grandeur and historical significance makes the Koïfhus a true gem and a must-visit attraction in Colmar.

Little Venice

Address: Quai de la Poissonnerie, 68000 Colmar, France

Colmar’s charm extends to its waterways, and the area known as “Little Venice” is a perfect embodiment of the town’s idyllic beauty. Located near the Tanners’ District, Little Venice offers a scenic view of colorful half-timbered houses reflected in the tranquil waters of the canals. As you stroll along Quai de la Poissonnerie, you’ll be captivated by the picturesque scenes that resemble a painting come to life.

The atmosphere in Little Venice is simply enchanting, with flowers adorning the windowsills and idyllic bridges connecting the different sides of the canals. Take a leisurely boat ride to fully immerse yourself in the beauty of this charming area. The boat tours allow visitors to explore the heart of Colmar from a unique perspective, gliding beneath low-hanging willow branches and soaking in the tranquility of this enchanting corner of the town. With its delightful architecture, scenic canals, and serene ambiance, Little Venice is undoubtedly an artistic gem in Colmar that transports you to a fairytale-like setting.

The Dominican Church

Address: Rue des Dominicains, 68000 Colmar, France

For lovers of religious art and architecture, a visit to the Dominican Church in Colmar is a must. This impressive 14th-century Gothic church stands as a testament to the town’s spiritual and historical significance. Its soaring spire and intricate details draw visitors’ attention from afar, while the interior reveals awe-inspiring stained glass windows and delicate sculptures.

The Dominican Church is also home to a remarkable organ, renowned for its exceptional craftsmanship and musical prowess. Attending a concert or an organ recital here is an unforgettable experience, filling the sacred space with ethereal melodies and showcasing the church’s exceptional acoustics. Step inside the church and lose yourself in the centuries of history and artistry that emanate from every corner of this captivating religious gem.

Colmar, with its rich artistic heritage and captivating architectural wonders, is a true haven for art and architecture lovers. From the Unterlinden Museum’s masterpieces to the charming canals of Little Venice, every corner of Colmar offers a delightful blend of history, culture, and creativity. As you explore this enchanting town, take the time to admire the intricate details of its buildings, immerse yourself in the vibrant art scene, and let the charm of Colmar unfold before your eyes. So pack your bags, embrace your inner art enthusiast, and let Colmar whisk you away on a magical journey through the creative side of France.

1. Colmar Tourism Office –
2. Unterlinden Museum –