With such an evocative name, it’s not hard to imagine what Little Venice in Colmar looks like: a peaceful canal – the Lauch River, more precisely – flanked by colorful Alsatian half-timbered houses on either side of it. The canal really is at the center of Colmar’s history; on one left, the fish and vegetable historic market district, and, on the other, the equally significant tannery markets and slaughterhouses. All are, of course, incredibly picturesque. Little Venice offers what visitors often feel is the ultimate Alsace money shot. Scattered around the canal are traditional winstubs and uneven cobblestone streets – this is as close as one can possibly get to stepping back in time. Houses along the canal used to belong to powerful fishing and farming families, which explains their sometimes extravagant features. It is possible to book a gondola ride on the Lauch River in the summertime. It really is the best way to admire the magnificent houses, some of which date all the back to 1350.
Little Venice stretches over a few hundred meters between Pont Saint-Pierre and Rue des Tanneurs. It is accessible by car; there is a small outdoor parking lot named Parking Marché aux fruits nearby. The best way to get there from the A35 motorway is D13, rue de la Semm, route de Bâle, rue de Turenne, and rue Saint-Jean. For those coming in on foot, the train station is 1 kilometer from Little Venice via Avenue de la République and rue Bruat.