Quick Guide to Alsace Lorraine

Departments in Alsace:

Bas Rhin · Haut Rhin

Departments in Lorraine:

Moselle · Meurthe et Moselle · Vosges

Popular towns in Alsace and Lorraine:

Strasbourg · Metz · Nancy · Mulhouse · Colmar

As the only region in France to border three countries, Alsace-Lorraine is often referred to as the crossroads of Europe - and it's not hard to see why. Encompassing everything from the "Petite Venise" of Alsacian Colmar to the "Petite France" of the Germanic Strasbourg, Alsace-Lorraine is the perfect place to enjoy all the best aspects of the European mainland in one spot. This melting pot of cultures is epitomised in the towns and villages dotted throughout the region, but is complemented by an equally varied countryside bursting with mountains, green forests and wildlife. The foot-hills of Bas Rhin and the plains of Haut Rhin in Alsace, the rivers of Moselle, the nature reserves of Meurthe-et-Moselle and the mountains of Vosges in Lorraine all reflect the diversity of this incredible and unique region.

Top things to do...

  • Escape the crowds and prices of skiing in the Alps by blazing your own trail down some of the more than 100 pistes in the region.
  • Glide through "Petite France" in Strasbourg on a boat ride past a serene collection of cobblestone streets, timbered houses and artisan cafés.
  • Rock-climb up above the trees to get a well-earned and exclusive view over the Black Forest.
  • Recover from a night on the region's famous crisp white wines by rehydrating with their world renowned mineral water and gorging on the eponymous quiche lorraine.
  • Learn about the rich and conflict-ridden history of this Franco-German region at the many historic sites in the town of Thann in the Thur Valley.

Top things to see...

  • Fairytale villages scattered at the foot of the gently rolling hills on the Wine Route of Alsace.
  • Alsace on one side and Lorraine on the other from the unrivalled panorama at the top of the Hohneck summit.
  • Deer, boars, foxes and more running through the enormous "réserves domaniales" nature reserves.
  • Meandering canals lined with bright Alsatian houses in "La Petite Venise" in Colmar.
  • The famously decadent "Place Stanislas" and bountiful Art Nouveau heritage in Nancy.

Famous for...

World War I, quiche, picturesque villages, the wine route, Vittel water, medieval Strasbourg

Did you know...?

Alsace-Lorraine is home to the "Cité de l'Automobile", a prestigious car museum which contains the largest and most comprehensive collection of Bugatti motor vehicles in the world.

Getting there

By road...Alsace-Lorraine is easily accessible by car, with the main cities only 4 hours from Paris by car, and even the more remote areas are easy to reach thanks to a well maintained network of minor roads. It also enjoys good roads into and out of Germany, Switzerland and Luxembourg.

By air...Nearly all flights to Metz, Nancy and Strasbourg in Alsace Lorraine from the UK involve a change at Paris, but even still the journey time is still under 7 hours in most cases. Most flights are operated by Airfrance. Unfortunately, this region is not served by any main budget airlines yet.

By public transport...Going to Alsace Lorraine by train is possibly the easiest and cheapest option, with regular high-speed train departures from Paris to different towns in the region throughout the day. Metz and Nancy are both less than 2 hours away from Paris by T.G.V, so the total journey time from London is only just over 6 hours.