France,  Strasbourg,  Travel Diary

Vive la France – Strasbourg

There has never been a city so beautiful and filled with culture from multiple countries other than Strasbourg. The half timbered houses and the small canals running through the city make it a beautiful sight to behold. The city itself is bursting with history between France and Germany as Strasbourg was controlled by both countries many times in the last 1000 years!

Being in Strasbourg for two whole days a lot of friends and family were already telling me before my trip had even started that I am going to run out of things to see.
Which in some sense was true but not necessarily and you’ll understand why in a bit!

Petite France

As soon as my boyfriend and I walked into the “city center” of Strasbourg we immediately fell in love with it’s flair. The colourful timber framed houses, all the brides and narrow cobble stone streets. It truly feels like you walked right into the setting of a Disney movie.

Apart from walking around the city and just taking in its beauty we also made sure to explore it by water. As some of you may know at this point I absolutely love taking boat tours when I am visiting a new city. There’s just something about it that I really enjoy. 
So one of the things we did in Strasbourg was taking a one hour “Batorama” canal cruise and learning about the history of Strasbourg.
Quick side note: Batorama is actually the only company at the moment that offers boat tours in Strasbourg so if you are considering exploring the city by water I’ll spare you some time and you can book your tickets right through their website! https://www.batorama.com/en

Amorino

Obviously we also had to visit the cathedral Notre-Dame since it is not only one of the main attractions of Strasbourg  but also the 6th tallest church in the world!
 
And here’s a little tip for all foodies that are reading this right now! Right on the street that leads up the Notre-Dame you’ll find a small ice-cream store called “Amorino”. Not only does their gelato taste amazing it also look gorgeous since it’s in the shape of a flower AND you have the option to garnish it with a macaron – which you obviously have to do when in France!
Would definitely recommend checking it out! https://www.amorino.com/

Regarding the Notre-Dame we definitely enjoyed our visit and I definitely loved the stained-glass windows inside the church. But as my boyfriend would say right about now: “just ABC – another beautiful church”. Which is true since we do have a lot of churches in Europe and I do drag him into most of them! If you are visiting Strasbourg maybe it would also be good to know that you can also climb the church tower of the Notre Dame, we just didn’t do it since there was a very long line the days we were in Strasbourg.

      

Barrage Vauban

Another major attraction in Strasbourg is “La petite France” which is basically the quarter where you’ll be able to find all the beautiful timber framed houses. 
But another attraction you’ll find in that quarter of Strasbourg is “Barrage Vauban” or rather the Vauban Dam which was built as a defence mechanism that would flood all of the lands south of the city in case of an attack. Nowadays it is used as a viewing platform for tourists and I have to say it does offer an astonishing view of “La petite France” and also the “Ponts Couverts”. For anybody who is interested the “Ponts Couverts” are three bridges and four connecting towers that span over the 3 canals that run through Petite France and flow into the river Ill.

I am pretty sure you even can get on top of one of the 4 towers and get another great view of the city. For us the Barrage Vauban was enough though and the best part about visiting it – it’s free!

     

      

One of my favourite things that we did on our trip to Strasbourg though was crossing the bridge that connects France and Germany!
One day we went to the “Two Shores Garden” which is a beautiful park that basically spans across France and Germany, and by that I mean one part of the garden is in Strasbourg and in order to get to the other half in Kehl you have to walk across the bridge “Passerelle des Deux Rives”.
When you are in the park you’ll find a lot of maps that suggest what to check out and even suggest a path to make the most out of your trip to “Two Shores Garden” but personally I prefer just strolling around and exploring it by myself. Obviously crossing the bridge that connects the two shores that are divided by the Rhein was the highlight of our excursion to the park.

Passerelle des Deux Rives

     

Apart from those couple things we did, we obviously also checked out the European Parliament, Palais Rohan, Parc de l’orangerie, Place Kléber  and a couple more typical tourist attractions. But I have to say that a lot of the time we were just strolling through the city exploring the different quarters like “La Petite France” and “La Neustadt” and just enjoying the time we had there, not rushing around from one sightseeing spot to the next.
And that’s what I meant earlier when I said that yes there are not that many touristy things to see (especially if you’re not a huge museum goer) but at the same time there is so much to explore in the city! 
So don’t feel pressured into going to Strasbourg only for a day because other people tell you to do so. We loved our 2 whole days (3 nights) in Strasbourg and even though we’ve “seen it all” now we definitely want to go back at some point!


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