I visited Colmar with my kids and husband in August 2023 thanks to the recommendations received from the Bébé Voyage community. We were going to London, Madrid, and Paris and I was looking to spend a couple of days in a “fairytale destination” easily reached from these 3 cities and, oh boy! As my 9-year described it: “Colmar is the most ‘fairytale-y’ place I’ve ever seen!” It is so beautiful you think you are in some sort of Disney Princess movie set. My daughters and I couldn’t help singing themes from Beauty and the Beast while we were walking those gorgeous streets (while my husband tried to hide from us…).
How did we get there?
We took a plane from Madrid to Basel (2 hours approx.). In Basel we took a bus at the airport that left us at the entrance of the train station (easy, 10-minutes ride with only one stop, bus name is Basel Euroairport FR). Once in Gare Saint-Louis train station, we took a 30-minute train to Colmar.
When leaving we took a direct train from Colmar to Paris.
Hotel and breakfast
We stayed at Novotel and, although it is not a hotel in a historic building, it is walking distance from the historic center (2-minutes away), and I would stay there again and recommend it to anyone going to Colmar with kids. They welcomed my daughters with a stuffed animal for each. Also, they have a kids’ corner with books, games, and a little theater for the kids TV. And they even rented strollers! It doesn’t get more kid friendly than this.
The room was modern, clean, spacious, and comfortable. They have complimentary water, juices, coffee, and slippers to take home. It has a king bed for parents and two twin beds for the kids. This may sound silly, but the shampoo, conditioner, and body wash were very high quality and smelled delicious. I then realized they come from the store “Rituals”.
Breakfast was included and it was decadent. They had French cheeses, croissants, pain au chocolat, crêpes, eggs, bacon, good coffee, juices, jams…
The boat ride in Petite Venise is worth it. Short and simple, yet so beautiful and relaxing. We also did the train, but it was close to noon, and it gets really hot in the train so I would recommend doing the train either very early or last thing in the afternoon if you go during the summer.
There is a beautiful carousel that my kids really enjoyed, and I did too since they have some chairs for parents to wait and wave.
We visited the Toy Museum to take advantage of the air conditioning, the bathrooms, and the water fountain. The museum per se is not a big deal (at all), but it is perfect for parents to take a break while kids play Nintendo or with Legos. I must admit that seeing the toys I used to play with was nice and made me feel very old. Lol.
Colmar has lots of shops and street vendors. We didn’t spend time shopping, but if you enjoy shopping, you will certainly find something there.
Lots and lots of restaurants and cafes, but the best restaurants fill up fast so make a reservation early in the morning for dinner. If you don’t have reservations, you will not starve, many places will have a table available, but if you want to do one of the restaurants next to the water (restaurants with terraces next to the Petit Venise), or a Michelin restaurant, or those recommended by hotels, make a reservation.
Food in Colmar is unique since it has not only French influence (of course), but German influence also.
We really enjoyed our time in Colmar with kids! Thanks to the Bébé Voyage community for all the tips!
Are you heading to Paris?
Bébé Voyage’s Itinerary for Paris includes 5 city walks for traveling with a baby. With these itineraries you can:
- Gain insider knowledge about different places and activities.
- Easily find locations, as they are all mapped out with turn by turn directions.
- Know exactly what you need to bring with you on each itinerary.
Our 2022 Paris travel guide has beaucoup de community sourced recommendations for:
- trustworthy babysitters for a date night out,
- charming hotels with rooms that are bigger than a shoe box,
- vacation rentals in case you want your own cuisine and salon,
- pediatric clinics and local baby meds, just in case.
All these items are pinned on an interactive map that you can download for off-line use. Updated post-pandemic with latest information.