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The capital of the Sundgau, the south of Alsace, was fortified in the Middle Ages, but most of the wall has disappeared over the centuries and remains visible only in the alignment of the houses and certain facades. Of the two original gates, only the western one remains, Gate of Belfort, crossing point between Rue des Remparts ("Ramparts Street") and old town.
Col de la Faucille
At the top of this pass, which links the Geneva region to the French Jura, at 1323m, you will find car parks, restaurants and numerous hiking possibilities. There is also a rail sledging course with a slope of 37%, but we didn't have time to try it out!
Situated just a few kilometres from Colmar, the small medieval winegrowing town of Eguisheim is rightly considered one of the most beautiful towns in Alsace. Overrun with tourists, it is nevertheless a truly unmissable destination.
A few kilometres south of Altkirch, capital of the Sundgau, Hirtzbach is a long Alsatian village. It is just a long street on either side of a stream that gives the village its name, with typical half-timbered houses and a large church crowned with a stork's nest.
St. Peter's Church, which can be visited all year round, was built between 1753 and 1767 to replace an earlier church that had been damaged during the Ten Years' War a century earlier. It does not fail to impress with its grandiose and majestic appearance.
Classified in a Natura 2000 zone, the Markstein is a winter sports, summer hiking and relaxation resort where you can practice summer sledging and paragliding. Located between 1040 and 1265m on the Route des Crêtes (road of the ridges), it forms a cross-country skiing area with the Breitfirst site and the high Nordic route which links it to the Grand Ballon, the highest point of the Vosges massif.
A long village in the French Jura near the source of the Doubs, Mouthe is close to a mid-altitude winter sports resort, but in summer it is at the heart of a bucolic region offering great hiking opportunities.
The Market Square is the heart of Munster, with the 1550 town hall to the north, the 19th century neo-Romanesque church to the west, the 16th century Catholic church to the east and the ruins of the old Benedictine abbey to the south. And storks' nests nearly everywhere!
The old town of Saint-Hippolyte lies south of the bridge over the Doubs. On the other side of the bridge, at the river's edge, is the Esplanade des Fêtes, which is in fact a free municipal car park, an area for motorhomes and a picnic area.
Saut du Doubs
Two platforms allow you to admire the waterfall, which is more or less impressive depending on the season. We are here on the French side in mid-May, two months before the record drying up of the Doubs in the summer of 2022. The Swiss platform is just opposite, but to get there you have to take the footbridge near the landing piers, a few hundred metres away.
The Route des Crêtes ("Route of the Ridges"), which has become a tourist destination for hikers, cyclists, motorcyclists and camper vans, was created by the French army during the First World War to ensure logistics and defence at the front. In 1871, Alsace and part of Lorraine were ceded to Germany and the Vosges ridges became the border between the two countries. We are here at a place called Breitsouze, above Lake of Lande.
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