A Family Guide to the Best Things to Do in Colmar (2023 Travel Guide)

Colmar is a charming town located in the heart of the Alsace region of France, and it’s a great destination for families looking for a mix of culture, history, and outdoor activities. From exploring the old town to visiting the Unterlinden Museum, there are plenty of things to do in Colmar with kids. In this blog post, we’ll highlight some of the best family-friendly attractions and give you some tips on how to plan your trip.

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If you’re planning a trip with your family, here’s a guide to the best things to do in Colmar:

  1. Explore the Old Town – Colmar’s old town is a treasure trove of historic buildings, winding streets, and colorful houses. Kids will love exploring the town’s hidden alleys and discovering the many fountains and sculptures that dot the streets. Make sure to stop by Little Venice, where you can take a boat tour along the canals.
  2. Visit the Unterlinden Museum – The Unterlinden Museum is home to a stunning collection of art and artifacts, including the famous Isenheim Altarpiece. The museum also has a dedicated children’s area where kids can learn about art and history through interactive exhibits.
  3. Visit the Butterfly House – The Butterfly House is a must-visit attraction for families with young kids. The tropical greenhouse is home to over 2,000 butterflies, as well as a variety of other exotic plants and animals.
  4. Take a Day Trip to Eguisheim – Eguisheim is a beautiful village located just a short drive from Colmar. With its charming streets, historic buildings, and quaint shops, it’s a great destination for a day trip with the family.
  5. Visit the Bartholdi Museum – The Bartholdi Museum is dedicated to the life and work of Frédéric-Auguste Bartholdi, the sculptor of the Statue of Liberty. Kids will love learning about the history of the statue and seeing some of Bartholdi’s other works.
  6. Take a Chocolate-Making Workshop – Colmar is known for its delicious chocolate, and there are several chocolate shops in town that offer workshops for kids. Learn how to make your own chocolate and take home some sweet souvenirs.
  7. Visit the Toy Museum – The Toy Museum is a great place to take kids of all ages. With its collection of antique toys and games, it’s a fun and educational way to spend an afternoon.

1. Exploring the Old town with kids

Exploring Colmar’s old town with kids is a great way to immerse them in the town’s rich history and culture. The old town is filled with winding streets, charming shops, and colorful houses that will capture their imagination. Here are some tips to make the most out of your exploration:

  1. Make it a game – Turn your walk through the old town into a scavenger hunt or treasure hunt. Give your kids a list of things to find, such as a certain type of building, a specific statue, or a particular color of door. This will keep them engaged and excited as you explore.
  2. Stop by the tourist office – The tourist office is a great resource for families visiting Colmar. They offer free maps and brochures that will help you plan your route through the old town, as well as suggestions for family-friendly activities and attractions.
  3. Take a break at a café or ice cream shop – If your kids start to get tired or hungry, take a break at one of the many cafés or ice cream shops in the old town. This will give them a chance to rest and refuel before continuing your exploration.
  4. Visit the markets – Colmar’s old town is home to several markets, including the covered market and the Christmas markets. Kids will love sampling the local produce and treats, and it’s a great way to introduce them to the town’s culinary traditions.
  5. Check out the fountains and sculptures – The old town is filled with fountains and sculptures that are sure to capture your kids’ attention. From the famous statue of Bartholdi’s “Little Vintner” to the whimsical fountain of “The Pfister Sisters,” there are plenty of photo opportunities and interesting stories to discover.
  6. Take a self-guided walking tour – Consider taking a guided walking tour of the old town. We offer a kid-friendly trail that is designed to be fun and informative for the whole family.

Exploring the old town with kids is a great way to create lasting memories and inspire a love of travel and history. With its charming streets and unique architecture, Colmar’s old town is a perfect destination for families looking for a mix of culture and fun.

2. Visiting the Unterlinden Museum with kids

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The Unterlinden Museum is a must-visit attraction for families in Colmar. This world-renowned museum is housed in a former Dominican convent and features an impressive collection of art and artifacts from the Middle Ages to the 20th century. Here are some tips to help you make the most of your visit with kids:

  1. Plan ahead – Before you go, check the museum’s website for information on current exhibitions and events. This will help you plan your visit and ensure that you don’t miss anything that your kids might be interested in.
  2. Use the family guide – The museum offers a family guide that is specifically designed for kids. This guide includes fun activities and games that will help your kids engage with the art and learn about the museum’s history and collections.
  3. Start with the highlights – The museum’s most famous piece is the Isenheim Altarpiece, a masterpiece of 15th-century art. This is a great place to start your visit with kids, as it’s sure to capture their imagination and spark their curiosity.
  4. Visit the children’s area – The museum has a dedicated children’s area called “Musée aux Enfants” that is perfect for kids aged 2 to 12. This area includes interactive exhibits and hands-on activities that will help your kids learn about art and history in a fun and engaging way.
  5. Take a break at the café – The museum’s café is a great place to take a break and refuel during your visit. It offers a selection of snacks, drinks, and light meals, as well as a kid’s menu.
  6. Join a family workshop – The museum offers family workshops that are designed to be fun and informative for both kids and adults. These workshops typically include a guided tour of the museum and a hands-on activity that will help your kids create their own artwork inspired by the museum’s collections.

Your kids will love learning about art and history when they visit the Unterlinden Museum. This museum will undoubtedly be a highlight of your family’s trip to Colmar thanks to its intriguing displays, family-friendly guide, and special children’s area.

3. Visiting the Butterfly House with kids

The Butterfly House in Colmar is housed in an old factory that was once used to manufacture textile printing machines. The factory was built in the late 19th century and operated until the mid-20th century. In 1976, the building was converted into a cultural center and later became the home of the Butterfly House. Today, the Butterfly House is one of the most popular attractions in Colmar, attracting visitors from around the world to learn about the fascinating world of butterflies.

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Here are some tips to help you make the most of your visit:

  1. Wear bright colors – Butterflies are attracted to bright colors, so wearing bright clothes can encourage them to land on you. This is especially exciting for kids!
  2. Bring a camera – The Butterfly House is full of colorful and unique butterfly species, so bring a camera to capture the magic. Your kids will love looking back at the pictures and identifying the different types of butterflies they saw.
  3. Follow the rules – The Butterfly House has strict rules to ensure the safety of the butterflies and visitors. Make sure you follow the rules and don’t touch the butterflies or their habitat.
  4. Take your time – The Butterfly House is a peaceful and calming environment, so take your time and enjoy the beauty of the butterflies. Encourage your kids to slow down and observe the butterflies in their natural habitat.
  5. Ask questions – The staff at the Butterfly House are knowledgeable about butterflies and their habitat, so don’t hesitate to ask questions. Your kids will learn a lot and may even discover a newfound interest in science and nature.
  6. Check for special events – The Butterfly House often hosts special events and activities for kids, such as butterfly releases and craft workshops. Check the website or ask at the front desk for upcoming events.

Visiting the Butterfly House with kids is a unique and memorable experience that will leave a lasting impression. With its peaceful and calming atmosphere and beautiful butterfly species, it’s a must-visit attraction for families in Colmar.

4. Taking a Day Trip to Eguisheim

Eguisheim is a medieval village located in the heart of the Alsace wine region in northeastern France, just a short drive from Colmar. The village is famous for its circular layout, charming narrow streets, and brightly colored half-timbered houses adorned with flowers. Eguisheim is also known for its excellent wine, particularly the white wines produced from the nearby vineyards.

The village has a rich history that dates back to the 8th century. It was once the seat of the powerful Counts of Eguisheim, who played a key role in the formation of the Holy Roman Empire. The village was also a center of wine production, with many of the houses in the village doubling as wineries.

Today, Eguisheim is a popular tourist destination, attracting visitors from around the world with its beauty and charm. The village has several attractions, including the Eguisheim Castle, which offers panoramic views of the village and the surrounding vineyards. The village also has several wine cellars and tasting rooms where visitors can sample the local wines.

Eguisheim is a great place to explore with kids, as it has a pedestrian-friendly layout and a variety of activities that are sure to keep them entertained. From exploring the castle to visiting the Stork Park, there is something for everyone in this charming village.

Here are some tips to make the most of your day trip:

  1. Plan ahead – Eguisheim is a small village, so plan ahead and make a list of the things you want to see and do. Check the opening hours of the attractions and restaurants, and plan your itinerary accordingly.
  2. Take a walk – Eguisheim is known for its circular layout and charming narrow streets, so take a walk and explore the village with your kids. The village is pedestrian-friendly, so you can take your time and enjoy the scenery.
  3. Visit the Castle – The Eguisheim Castle is a must-visit attraction for families. The castle is open to the public and offers panoramic views of the village and the surrounding vineyards. Your kids will love exploring the castle and learning about its history.
  4. Sample local food – Eguisheim is famous for its Alsatian cuisine, so make sure you sample some local food during your visit. Try the famous Alsatian tarte flambée or the local wines.
  5. Visit the Stork Park – The Stork Park is a short drive from Eguisheim and is a great place to take your kids. The park is home to a variety of storks and other birds, and your kids will love learning about their habits and behavior.
  6. Enjoy the scenery – Eguisheim is surrounded by vineyards and rolling hills, so take some time to enjoy the scenery. Take a picnic or rent bikes and explore the surrounding countryside.

5. Visiting the Bartholdi Museum with kids

The Bartholdi Museum in Colmar is dedicated to the life and work of the famous French sculptor, Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi. Bartholdi is best known for designing the Statue of Liberty, which stands in New York Harbor, but he was also responsible for many other notable works of art.

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Visiting the Bartholdi Museum with kids is a great way to introduce them to the world of art and sculpture. Here are some tips to make the most of your visit:

  1. Learn about Bartholdi’s life – The museum has several exhibits that trace the life and career of Bartholdi, including his early years in Colmar and his travels around the world. Your kids will love learning about the man behind the famous statue.
  2. See Bartholdi’s works of art – The museum has a collection of Bartholdi’s sculptures, including several large-scale works. Your kids will be amazed at the size and detail of these sculptures and will have fun trying to guess what they represent.
  3. Participate in a workshop – The museum offers a variety of workshops for kids, where they can learn about sculpture and create their own works of art. These workshops are a great way to inspire creativity and imagination in your kids.
  4. Explore the museum garden – The museum has a beautiful garden that is open to visitors. Take a walk through the garden and enjoy the sculptures and flowers.
  5. Visit the gift shop – The museum has a gift shop where you can buy souvenirs and books about Bartholdi and his works of art. Your kids will love picking out a special souvenir to remember their visit.

The Bartholdi Museum is a unique and interesting attraction that offers something for everyone. With its fascinating exhibits, workshops, and beautiful garden, it’s a great destination for families looking to explore the world of art and sculpture.

6. Taking a chocolate-making workshop with kids

One of the best places to have a chocolate-making workshop in Colmar is at the Chocolaterie Jacques Bockel. Jacques Bockel is a renowned chocolate maker in Colmar, and his chocolate shop and workshop are located in the heart of the old town. The workshop includes a guided tour of the chocolate shop, a presentation on the history of chocolate, and a hands-on workshop where you can create your own chocolate creations. The workshop is suitable for all ages and is available in several languages, including English. Participants get to take home the chocolates they made, and the shop also has a wide selection of chocolates and other confections for sale.

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Taking a chocolate-making workshop with kids at Chocolaterie Jacques Bockel in Colmar is a great experience that the whole family can enjoy. Here are some tips to make the most of your workshop with kids:

  1. Choose the right workshop – Chocolaterie Jacques Bockel offers several different chocolate-making workshops, each with different themes and skill levels. Choose a workshop that is suitable for the age and skill level of your kids.
  2. Dress appropriately – Chocolate-making can be messy, so dress your kids in comfortable clothes that can get a little dirty. Aprons are usually provided, but it’s still a good idea to wear clothes that can withstand a little chocolate.
  3. Be patient – Chocolate-making requires precision and patience, so be patient with your kids as they learn. They may make mistakes, but that’s all part of the learning process.
  4. Have fun – Above all, have fun! Chocolate-making is a fun and creative activity that kids will love. Encourage them to be creative and experiment with different flavors and textures.
  5. Take lots of pictures – Taking pictures of your kids making chocolate is a great way to capture the memories of your workshop. Plus, it’s always fun to look back on the pictures and remember the fun you had.

It’s a terrific opportunity to learn about chocolate and gain new skills to participate in a chocolate-making session with children at Chocolaterie Jacques Bockel. The entire family can take part in this enjoyable and memorable activity.

7. Visiting the toy museum with kids

The Toy Museum, or “Musée du Jouet” in Colmar, is a museum dedicated to the history of toys. It is located in an old cinema building in the historic center of Colmar and showcases a wide range of toys from different periods and countries.

The museum features a collection of over 2,500 toys, including dolls, games, trains, cars, and other toys from the 19th century to the present day. The collection is divided into three floors and presents the evolution of toys over time, highlighting the changes in technology and society.

On the ground floor, visitors can explore the toys from the 19th century, including wooden toys, dolls, and board games. The first floor is dedicated to the toys of the 20th century, with displays featuring plastic toys, dolls, and other popular toys of the time. The second floor is home to the more modern toys, including video games and electronic toys.

The museum also has interactive exhibits that allow visitors to play with some of the toys, such as a giant pinball machine and a train set. In addition, the museum regularly hosts workshops for children where they can learn about different toy-making techniques and create their own toys.

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Here are some tips for visiting the museum with kids:

  1. Plan ahead – The museum is open daily except for Tuesdays, and it’s best to check the opening hours before you go. Also, note that the museum is closed during the month of January.
  2. Start with the ground floor – The museum is spread over three floors, and it’s best to start with the ground floor. The ground floor features a collection of toys from the 19th century, including dolls, trains, and games. Kids will love seeing the toys that their grandparents or great-grandparents may have played with.
  3. Look for interactive exhibits – The museum has several interactive exhibits that kids will love. For example, there is a large train set that kids can operate and a giant pinball machine that they can play.
  4. Learn about the history of toys – The museum has a large collection of toys from different time periods and countries. Take the time to read the information panels and learn about the history of toys.
  5. Take a break – The museum has a small café where you can take a break and grab a snack or a drink. There is also a gift shop where you can buy souvenirs and toys.
  6. Attend a workshop – The museum regularly hosts workshops for kids, where they can create their own toys or learn new skills. Check the museum’s website for details on upcoming workshops.

In conclusion, Colmar is a wonderful destination for a family vacation, with a range of activities that will keep both kids and adults entertained. From exploring the charming old town to visiting the Unterlinden Museum, there is something for everyone to enjoy. The city also offers unique experiences like taking a chocolate-making workshop or visiting the Bartholdi Museum, where you can learn about the creator of the Statue of Liberty. Additionally, taking a day trip to nearby Eguisheim is a great way to experience the beauty of the Alsatian countryside.

With so many things to see and do in Colmar, there is no doubt that your family will have an unforgettable time. So pack your bags, hop on a train, and get ready to discover the magic of this charming city in the heart of Alsace. Whether you’re strolling through the cobbled streets of the old town or enjoying a picnic in one of its beautiful parks, Colmar is sure to leave a lasting impression on you and your family.


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