On day 2 of exploring Alsace’s fairytale villages, we went to Kaysersberg, less than 20 minutes drive from Colmar. We arrived around 8:30 AM and it was quiet, there is a big parking lot outside of the village center marked as “Parking P5” in Google Maps. Parking cost €1 per hour, reasonable. The weather wasn’t great, cloudy sky and occasionally drizzling. At the entrance to the village center is the 5-stars hotel and restaurant – Le Chambard · Hôtel Restaurants Spa Alsace and also its restaurant is Michelin 2 stars!
The entrance to the hotel and restaurant on the right side.
One of the side street, residential area:
There were some vendors selling food, goods, and even clothing.
Cute houses on the side street:
There’s also a glass factory where you can enter for free to see someone blowing glasses.
There are many beautiful glasses for sale and this one was interesting….a weather instrument to show sunny, cloudy, or thunderstorms! We didn’t end up buying anything though.
We walked back out to the main street and continued on our walk…the houses getting cuter and colorful. Each village must have at least a water fountain right in the square!
There are more souvenir shops and as well shops selling local food like my favorite foie gras, cheese, and of course wine being in the wine route of France! We went into a shop selling foie gras and bought some. We bought foie gras on previous trips to France but didn’t realize there are different types. The guy explained that all the foie gras are made locally and the differences on price are: duck + other animal mix is the cheapest, duck (foie gras de canard) is the middle expensive, and goose (foie gras d’oie) is the most expensive! In addition, the composition: most expensive is foie gras entier (single piece from a single liver or two pieces from two different livers), next expensive is foie gras (pieces blended from different livers), and bloc de foie gras (cream of several mixed fois gras) and so on…That was when I realized the ones that I ordered from restaurants were duck and not goose. I bought two cans of goose foie gras to bring home, which cost me over €100!
One of the many cute looking restaurants!
Finally, I saw a sign of foliage….those 3 trees!
Another angle of the fountain looking back at the church:
We continued walking down the main street and stopped every block for photos!
I love the vines wrapped around the windows!
That’s a castle ruin on top – Château du Schlossberg.
The giant gingerbread man:
Many more restaurants:
Isn’t this charming?
This is a very cute house, the shape looked like one of ceramic houses that I collected!
Colorful paintings of the village:
Kaysersberg has a river running through the village:
Look at the sculptures here!
The main street splitter into two and this is one of the ends looking back to the village center:
On the bridge for this view:
After the bridge, the streets are residential areas, very peaceful:
Look at the wood work, very fairytale-like wooden houses!
Back to the main street, it got busier at this time.
I didn’t make any reservations for lunch because I want to be flexible to explore the villages according to the weather and at our own pace. The downside of it was I never expect the Alsace region to be this busy in early October! The highly-rated restaurants are mostly fully booked…even at lunch!!! We checked two restaurants and were fully booked so, fortunately, the 3rd one -La Vieille Forg was empty which was weird! We thought we might step into a tourist trap since it was empty…
The amuse-bouche was a creamy soup which was perfect for this kind of weather; it tasted great!
Jason ordered the 3 course set menu for €33 which includes an appetizer, main, and dessert. For the appetizer, we paid €11 extra for duck foie-gras, the blended type. It was very rich!
For the main, I ordered a steak with a piece of pan-fried foie gras (the foie gras entier type haha) for €45. We love the texture of this foie gras, very silky. The steak was perfectly cooked to be medium-rare.
Jason chose the beef with sweet potatoe and vegetables. It was flavorful too, not as good as mines though.
For dessert, we picked the honey ice cream and cottage cheese with homemade granola. The honeycomb cracker was crunchy and full of honey taste.
Our delicious lunch was €91.60, upscale restaurants in Alsace region are expensive but thanks to the strong US dollar to help our wallet a bit 😀
After lunch, we drove to the next village – Turckheim, 10 minutes away. Parking was free!!! What a cute clock tower to enter the village center.
This village was so quiet! Look at how empty the main street was!
That house’s balcony was filled with flowers.
Similar type of cute half-timbered houses in this village as well.
This is the most beautiful water fountain we saw of all the villages we visited!
A garden right next to the government building “Hotel De Ville”.
The main street with shops and restaurants:
Beautiful houses with lots of plants on the sides:
End of the street looking back at the flowery water fountain side, the houses on the main street are mostly pink-shaded!
More houses filled with flowers.
Lots of shops and restaurants are closed due to Sunday.
It was so quiet that after the main square behind the clock tower, there was no tourist at all except us!
The end of the main street marked by another clock tower – not as cute as the other one.
One of the side streets:
Looking back from the other clock tower to the village center:
The yellow house with the grape vines:
Another side street with colorful houses:
Turckheim is small but it was very enjoyable to walk around with no crowds and it’s colorful and cute too. I highly recommend a visit to Turckheim!
Since we still have time, we decided to visit one more village – Riquewihr which is also one of the most beautiful villages in France along with Eguisheim.
There were a few parking lots outside the town center and cost €3 for 2 hours. We got a spot right outside the entrance which is the government building.
A water fountain right after the entrance:
Being one of the most popular towns in Alsace, it was super busy especially with tour groups! The main street was so colorful and beautiful!
I managed a few pictures without the crowds! There are a lot of shops and restaurants in this town.
Riquewihr is more uphill and since it’s one of the bigger towns in the area, it has a tourist information center.
A lot of shops here are selling wines.
It has no shortages of pastries shops too!
A flowery pink house:
It was less busy on the side streets and less colorful.
The end of the main street looking back at the pink house. Look at the giant paining on the wall of that red house!
The clock tower is the prettiest in Riquewihr.
The main constantly have people going up and down the street so it was impossible to get a photo without crowds…
That was when we decided to head back to Colmar to do shopping and will visit Riquewihr first thing tomorrow morning for photos with less crowds!
Back to Colmar to shop for clothes but we didn’t find anything we like 🙁
I remembered this house, its architectural style was different than the half-timbered houses.
Since it was a Sunday, our dining choices were very limited….a lot of restaurants are closed or fully booked! We ended up walking to Muang Thai and it was fully booked too, can you imagine a Thai restaurant fully booked? Fortunately or not (I’ll get to it later), they do take-outs so we ordered take-outs.
When we took out the boxes, it was a huge disappointment that the portions were small for dinner. Jason ordered the pineapple fried rice and it didn’t have the “wok” taste; it was okay.
I ordered my must at Thai restaurant – Pad Kee Mao (drunken noodle) and urg…the noodle wasn’t the flat noodle type and it didn’t taste anything like drunken noodle 🙁 It was edible at best.
Lastly, the seafood noodle with gravy/soup….why didn’t they use this type of flat noodle for the drunken noodle?
The seafood ingredients were cheap!!! They even sliced the scallop in half so it was actually one scallop! The shrimps were the cheap frozen ones.
We were so disappointed with the quality of the ingredients and the taste! The three dishes were €50.30, I guess the price correlates to the quality but I have no idea how this restaurant earned so high ratings!
Overall, Kaysersberg, Turckheim, and Riquewihr are beautiful. I can’t wait to explore more villages the next day!