Bordered by vineyards, this medieval village has historic timbered houses decked out in flowers, flowing fountains, and a sandstone church featuring a 13th-century statue. This is the birthplace of Alsatian wine, and some of the local vineyards are classified as Grand Cru. Be sure to sample the wine selections while you’re in the area.
Pick up maps and information at the well-stocked office of tourism in the center of town. You can follow the routes on a self-guided walking tour along narrow alleys lined with colorful old houses, or take a stroll through the vineyards. Some of the wineries allow you to reserve a tour or tasting session.
The Little Train gives audio tours July-September. Look for it on the main street, Grand Rue, across from the town hall, in front of the hotel Hostellerie du Pape,
The once-fortified village and surrounding vineyards are laid out in a circle around the ruins of a chateau that once belonged to the influential Eguisheim family.
Follow Rue du Rempart Sud along the old town wall, then walk to the main square, dominated by a fountain and statue of Pope Leon IX, who was born in the village.
In the hills above the town, you will spot the ruins of three 11th-13th century castles. The restored Hohlandsbourg Castle is nearby in the commune of Wintzenheim on the Route of Five Castles (Route des Cinq Châteaux). Take time to visit ($) this citadel that was begun in 1279. The castle is open from April until November. Views to the west are striking and summer festivals take place on the grounds.