Discover travel destinations of travelers writing a travel journal on FindPenguins.

97 travelers at this place

  • Day34

    Christmas in Colmar

    December 25, 2019 in France ⋅ 🌧 7 °C

    After a bit of a rough night in which we were all woken up by what sounded like either an explosion or gunfire at 12.20am, we had a slow start to the day.
    Considering where we are and the history of terror attacks last year in a nearby town the large blast certainly gave us a scare. Add to that the yelling we could hear it took a few minutes and another blast for us to realise it was random fireworks. Still it got our hearts thumping and made it hard to get back to sleep so we were all thankfully for the relaxing late start to our Christmas.

    After chatting to the kids we had missed the night before we checked to see if Santa had managed to find us... and he had. Brad received a beautiful Italian leather satchel, perfect for travelling, and I got spoilt with a lovely embossed Italian leather wallet and a few other treasure “Santa” had collected so far in our trip. I felt very spoilt. Santa didn’t forget Peta and Errol either leaving them with a bottle of French red wine.

    Brad and decided to venture out to see if we could get some more of the delicious croissants we had yesterday to add to our cheese and ham but all the pastry shops were closed. There were still quite a few people out and about enjoying the quieter streets.

    Brunch/lunch was a meat and cheese platter made with produce we had sourced from the food market yesterday with our homemade vin brûlée, or vin chaud as it is called in France. We made sure to take our cheesy Christmas photos in front of our live Christmas tree, in our matching ugly Christmas sweaters, although they weren’t as ugly as some I had seen.

    It was a lovely way to spend the day, chatting with each other and when possible FaceTiming with family from home. It is a very different experience being on a different time zone to home where they have all wrapped up their Christmases as we are starting ours. I’m not sure I want to be this far away again as I am missing the kids and their partners, and our grand puppies, a lot.

    After a very relaxing morning/afternoon Errol roasted up the fresh veggies, heated up our beef Wellington and made some red wine jus for amazing Christmas dinner. It was so tasty especially paired with our French wines, Vodka beers followed with Caramel vodka shots.

    Feeling very full and a wee bit merry we decided to spread our Christmas cheers with the revellers in the streets (which was a good excuse to get another vin chaud on our way out). We walked the cobblestoned streets, admiring the Christmas light displays, chatted to a couple of heavily armed police, and even had a ride on a carousel. What a fun Christmas night.

    We returned to our apartment for our delicious Christmas dessert, listened to some music and just enjoyed these amazing moments we are having with our very special friends. We are so lucky to have them in our lives and it has been a privilege sharing our first Christmas away from home with them. Friends are family you choose yourself and spending the day with Peta and Errol helped ease our feelings of homesickness. Love you guys.
    Read more

  • Day11

    The Beautiful City of Colmar

    August 31, 2017 in France ⋅ ☁️ 15 °C

    The day was spent riding to the town of Colmar and back again. The MS Andante remained moored at Breisach while we cycled. Maggie and I had previously visited Colmar on an earlier trip to France and immediately fell in love with the place. The combination of medieval, half timbered buildings and flower lined canals is the stuff of postcards.

    We spent some time riding and walking around the centre of the town and discovered that the city was just as beautiful as we remembered it to be. Many of the buildings are adorned with collections of flowers, hearts, chairs and just about anything else they could find. Each building is painted a different bright pastel shade and the combined effect is breathtaking. The bridges are also a work of art, some almost completely covered with floral arrangements. This city must certainly rank among the most amazing cities I have ever visited.
    Read more

  • Day2

    Christmas overloaded!

    December 8, 2019 in France ⋅ ☁️ 12 °C

    Wer auf Weihnachten steht, der ist hier richtig... das ist jetzt nicht negativ gemeint!!
    Wir habe auf jeden Fall einen kurzweiligen Tag verbracht... mit den Gedanken, dass man hier auch mal ein Wochenende ohne Weihnachtsmarkt verbringt.....! Es ist definitiv ein schönes verwinkeltes romantisches kleines Städtchen, das man mit der netten Umgebung (Vogesen) nochmal besuchen kann

    Off Topic: „ zum Glück“ habe ich mir überlegt, hier noch einmal vor unserer Uganda-Tour meine genialen Wanderschuhe auszuprobieren...jaaa, ist schief gegangen, vermutlich altersbedingt hat die Sohle tschüss gesagt,.... Hurra, ich weiß jetzt, was ich mir zu ...jaaa... zu WEIHNACHTEN...wünsche!!!
    Read more

  • Day1

    Los geht‘s

    December 7, 2019 in France ⋅ ☁️ 7 °C

    09.00 Uhr ist Abfahrt, ich finds passend, josh meint, es wäre ne Stunde zu spät 🙄.
    15.30 Uhr Ankunft in Colmar, Platz finden, einrichten, Brot essen, Wasser fassen und ab Marsch auf den ersten Weihnachtsmarkt (von fünf oder sechs Stück in diesem Kaff!)

    Jaaaa, hier ist definitiv Weihnachten, zumindest in der Altstadt, alle Häuser sind geschmückt, alle, wirklich alle Geschäfte verkaufen irgendein Weihnachtsgedöns, und mit der Kulisse und den schiefen Häuschen sieht alles sehr nett aus!

    Und .... der Glühwein schmeckt viiiieeel besser als bei uns!!
    Read more

  • Day231

    Colmar, France

    December 30, 2017 in France ⋅ ☁️ 10 °C

    On our drive back to Luxembourg we stopped in the French town that inspired Beauty and the Beast. It's a breathtaking old town on a river surrounded by colorful houses. We enjoyed walking the cobbled streets still adorned with Christmas cheer and visiting a beautiful marketplace where we sampled toasted baguette sandwiches and chocolate eclairs; how French are we?! Next stop Luxembourg for New Years!Read more

  • Day448

    Day 449: North to Colmar

    May 9, 2018 in France ⋅ ☀️ 22 °C

    Left Lyon after breakfast and drove northwards for about 4 hours. Our stop today was the final part of the Fortifications of Vauban listing we were going to see - an octagonal fortress town just near the German border. This area is Alsace, a province that's been handed back and forth between France and Germany 5 times in the last 150 years.

    The town was interesting though very quiet, and we spent about an hour or so walking along the 18th century walls that still surround the town. It was the last fortress built by Vauban so essentially his most idealised vision.

    From here we drove via the supermarket to the town of Colmar and our B&B for the next few days. It's a little granny flat type place on a battleaxe block; very home-made feel to it but quite nice at the same time.

    Quite hot so debated jumping in their pool but eventually settled for working instead - joy!
    Read more

  • Day450

    Day 451: Shandos's Birthday

    May 11, 2018 in France ⋅ ⛅ 17 °C

    Shandos's birthday today! I gave her a card and cooked her breakfast in bed, scrambled eggs and toast. Not especially salubrious but when you're in each other's company 24/7 and in a different place every few days there's not a lot else you can do!

    For her birthday she wanted to explore the town of Colmar, so that's what we did! It's a pretty little town with lots of narrow streets, winding canals and colourful half-timbered houses. Found a nice little restaurant and had a three-course lunch that Shandos's parents had offered to pay for. Fairly typical local food apparently, we had a set menu of tuna wrap on salad, a large piece of grilled pork, then a nougat ice-cream thing for dessert - very tasty.

    Afterwards we headed out of town to nearby Riquewihr, another pretty little town. This didn't have a canal but it did have plenty of half-timbered houses and lots of nearby vineyards too! And an awful lot of tourists as well, sadly, but it was still quite nice. Home around 6pm where we crashed pretty quickly, only time for a quick dinner of spatzl, a type of egg noodle common to this area.
    Read more

  • Day12

    A rainy day to ride to Colmar

    August 31, 2017 in France ⋅ ⛅ 18 °C

    A sudden change in the weather meant that the temperature had dropped by at least 10 degrees and there was a 99% chance of rain. Many of the Ghostriders decided that they wouldn’t ride and would travel to Colmar by bus instead. I was keen to ride however and as was Douglas, Henry and Lionel. We set off just after 8 and made our way towards Neuf-Brisach where a good proportion of the group planned to visit and then return to the boat to change and bus it to Colmar. We carried on towards Colmar along lovely almost totally flat canal path passing Khunheim and about 5km after that making a sharp left turn and following another path of a similar nature. It did rain on and off (heavily for about 20 minutes) but the weather really was quite mild as we passed through a largely agricultural area with a few villages. We arrived in Colmar after about 2 and a half hours feeling that it had been a really lovely spin (even on the clunk old bikes). We soon found our way into the centre of the city and found a café near the Cathedral where we enjoyed a coffee before having a bit of a wander around the Cathedral area which is resplendent with lovely timber buildings. There was another toilet incident (and as it transpired another Ghostrider – who shall remain nameless had a a similar one to that which we observed) 50c was required to use the toilet which we did not have – we didn’t “flush” and tag teamed to use the facilities. Not flushing was clearly the key as a couple using the adjacent toilet found out. The Husband went in, pressed the flush button and then held the door open for his wife – she entered, the door shut and then suddenly the toilet entered its “decontamination cycle”. We could hear the lady bashing on the door and calling for help, her husband tried to open the door to no avail and a minute or 2 later she emerged VERY wet from the mid-calf down! Following this encounter, we rode to to “Little Venice” this is an area of Colmar where houses line a canal and it is somewhat reminiscent of Venice – there were a number of restaurants along the canal however we decided that they were too “fancy smancy touristy” on so went and found a lovely “local” café on the other side of town where we enjoyed more coffee and I had my packed lunch followed by a delicious raspberry tart.
    Meanwhile Kirstin had taken the bus into Colmar with a group of other Ghostriders (Andrea and Greg) arriving at about 10am and starting the visit with a wander around the lovely old town centre and then enjoying a coffee at a little café near a church. Then they just wandered around the town (photographing cakes and macarons along the way) destination “little Venice” where they had a boat trip – 25 minutes up and down the canal – the boat driver provided an interesting commentary – also toilet related - when he pointed out how the facilities in the houses along the canal were directly over the water (even on the second floor) – fortunately they do not function this way today! Also interestingly, the colours of the houses indicated the religious of the inhabitants – blue for Catholics, Red for Protestants… also light blue shutters would indicate a “single lady” in residence. They also saw the house of the hangman (sequestered behind a wall as it was a real case of NIMBY). These days you can have any colour you like provided it isn’t the same as your neighbours! They also found a house built in 1568 (400 years before we were born!!). After lunch in a Patiserrie where Kirstin enjoyed a tuna baguette and a chocolate eclair and a Tarte au Citron. … yummmo. After lunch, there was an interesting visit to the Musee d’Bartholdi (the creator of the statue of Liberty) and other well know works around France. Following the museum, it was back to the station for the bus to Breisach….. a full and enjoyable day!
    Read more

  • Day2

    Colmar, France

    December 20, 2019 in France ⋅ ⛅ 7 °C

    We flew from China to Paris this morning. Our original plan to get to Colmar was by train from Paris. However, there were strikes going on and our train was cancelled. We had to book a flight from Paris to Frankfurt where the rest of my family were meeting, and then travel 3 hours by car to Colmar.

    Once all the family members arrived, we were on our way to Colmar in a rented van driven by the brother in laws father. Once we got to Colmar, we checked into our air bnb, which turned out to be better than I expected! Its located close to the old town centre and close to where the Christmas markets are held. The buildings are stunning, especially with the Christmas lights and decorations. Old Germanic styled buildings and houses.

    We plan on visiting the markets early tomorrow morning, and from there, I'm not entirely sure what else we will be doing as my brother is planning this trip for us. I would love to try the carousel and ice skating though!
    Read more

  • Day3

    Colmar Christmas Markets

    December 21, 2019 in France ⋅ ⛅ 8 °C

    On the way to the a Christmas Markets this morning, we walked past Little Venice, which was about a minute walk from where we were staying. Its a beautiful little area, especially with all the Christmas lights and decorations, but of course it was crowded. At least we managed to get a nice picture there!

    The Christmas Markets were exactly how I had pictured them to be, I was just surprised that there were so many of them! There were stalls that sold Christmas decorations, pretzels, mulled wine, cheese, meats and other types of foods. We stopped by a pretzel store and got some cheese pretzels and a donut looking one. Some of the markets had rides for children and even a little pen with goats in them.

    We stopped by the Church while strolling through the many Christmas markets in the area. My brother in law is from Colmar, so it was nice to have him give us the history and information of the places we visited (and of course translate!). The church we visited was built in the 1100s, and you can see a giant storks nest just on the very top of it. There were a few grave sites still remaining around the church, but of course they have been emptied out to construct other buildings around the church.

    By the time we finished walking through most of the markets, it was about 5pm and it was already starting to get quite dark. We had a lovely home cooked meal made by my brother in laws parents. Tried out some of the many cheeses that were brought from the farmers markets earlier in the day - my absolute favourite was the Brie with truffle on the inside! That particular cheese is a specialty usually only made for Christmas, and costs about 80 euros per kg. It's totally worth the price!

    After dinner, we walked back through some of the markets to get to our air bnb. It was nice seeing the markets at night too, with all the decorations lit up. We walked past Little Venice again, but this time there were 4 swans in the river which made it look even more fairytale like.
    Read more

You might also know this place by the following names:

Colmar, كولمار, Koimar, Горад Кальмар, Колмар, Κολμάρ, کلمار, קולמר, CMR, コルマール, Кольмар, 콜마르, Colmaria, Kolmara, کولمر, 68000, กอลมาร์, 科尔马

Join us:

FindPenguins for iOSFindPenguins for Android

Sign up now