Picture perfect !
Welcome to Kaysersberg & Riquewihr !
On this 31st March feeling more like a mid June with températures expected to reach 24° celcius, it was with great delight that I was travelling again on the famous Alsace Wines Route to discover two of its most spectacular crown jewels, celebrated for their beauty & charm which are making of these two picturesque villages "Pretty as a Postcard" : Kaysersberg & Riquewihr !
Thanks to the exceptionally hot and dry Springtime we are experiencing this year in the Great East, work in the vineyards is up to 3 weeks ahead of its schedule and man was already binding the vine on the sunny vineyards ( operation which consists in binding the vine shoot with a tie, which avoids the vine shoot to be suffer too much from strong winds and also to direct the vine shoot in the desired direction )
There are places which are preceeded by their reputation and these two villages which I was about to discover are amongst the flagship villages of the Alsatian architectural heritage with a little personal touch for Riquewihr which my Mum visited in her youth, when she was part of the Young Scouts and had walked through the entire Alsace region afoot, slept there overnight and was still cherishing the memory more than half a century later !
This might sound a little "cliché" for the insiders but for whom discover the Alsace region and in particular the Wine Route for the first time, the feeling of being blown away by so much beauty will be along with you on every street corner, each one even more picturesque than the previous one with those exquisite medieval colourful timbered houses which all seem straight out of a fairy tale...
On this 31st March feeling like Summertime, Nature was inviting us to a festival of colours and scents through a multitude of daffodils, tulips but also forsythias, cherry and plum trees in bloom, a real delight for the eyes and the senses !
Kaysersberg, nestled in the heart of sunny vineyards, birthplace of the famous Nobel Prize winner Dr Schweitzer dominated by the ruins of its imperial stronghold castle built in the 12th century with the river Weiss running through the village right below the noble timbered houses in places such as the Rue du Moulin.
Just like its illustrious neighbour village, Riquewihr is amongst the most beautiful villages of France and also one of the most flowery rewarded each year by the prestigious " 3 Flowers Flowery Village", an award which counts up to 4 Flowers with récipients such as Colmar and Eguisheim, also located on the Wine Route.
Discovering Riquewihr is entering a fortified city which history goes back as far as the Roman occupation, through the ancient "Porte du Bas" which passes through the City Hall and the rest will be an enchanting journey as one will wander from the "Tour des Voleurs", rue des Juifs to the "Place des 3 Eglises" up to the famous "Fontaine de la Sinne".
And not to forget the wonderful moment in which a Stork from nearby Ribeauvillé flew over me while looking for a branch in a nearby field to consolidate its nest...magical moments which the Alsace will delight you with in an ever dazzling and enchanting discovery of a region which is truly unique !
I invite you to discover these two jewels of the Alsatian heritage as they are about to celebrate Easter and which become simply magical at Christmas time...