hidden europe 28

A small town in Alsace: Wissembourg

by Nicky Gardner

Picture above: One of the branches of the River Lauter running through the heart of Wissembourg (photo © hidden europe).


Fountains and flowers, neatly swept alleys, French sentences flowing into Alsatian German and back again, plus the inevitable choucroute, all combine to make Wissembourg one of Europe's most appealing small towns.

The perfect September day in Wissembourg might start with a coffee or two sitting at one of the little tables outside La Vignette and end with a glass of wine at L’Espérance — best enjoyed on the lawn by the stream that runs in front of the café. The hours in between might profitably be occupied by doing nothing more demanding than strolling the streets of Wissembourg, exploring the town’s ramparts and the vineyards, meadows and forests beyond. The small town in the French département of Bas-Rhin is Alsace pure and simple. Choucroute and flammekueche come as standard fare, Wissembourg’s cafés are awash with tempting Alsace wines, and you are never more than a minute’s walk from running water.

Wissembourg is a place over which armies once fought.

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