One day in Strasbourg with kids. All you need to know for a short visit to Strasbourg: must-see highlights, travel tips, local food, a great park for the families, and even a city walk map. Check it out!

The Highlights of Strasbourg with Kids

In Europe, France, Inspiration by Jurga14 Comments

Strasbourg is undoubtedly one of the most charming towns of France; a town you should definitely include in your French trip itinerary. We had been to Strasbourg in the past, but this was was the first time we visited Strasbourg with kids. In this post I share our day in Strasbourg, including things to see and do in the city and the map with a city walk we did in the old town. It’s not an in-depth guide of Strasbourg, rather a one-day city guide including the main highlights of Strasbourg and the best way to see the old city centre in just a couple of hours.

We also visited Parc de L’Orangerie in the less known part of the city. Since it’s such a great area for families and other travellers alike, I included this park in our Strasbourg one day itinerary as well (read more below).

How to spend a perfect day in Strasbourg France

 

The highlights of Strasbourg and our city walk map

This is a map I made to illustrate our Strasbourg city centre walk.

Strasbourg city centre walking map

Click on the map to enlarge!

 

We started our Strasbourg city walk at the car parking Centre Historique Petite France (right at the Strasbourg Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art -#1 on our map).

Barrage Vauban

The first stop on our Strasbourg city walk was Barrage Vauban (#2) – a 17th century covered bridge that has a terrace on the roof offering beautiful views over the historical centre of Strasbourg. The inside corridor is now used to display ancient plaster casts and several statues. This is such a great place to start your day in Strasbourg with kids. Our boys loved the covered bridge, the fact that you could go on the roof, and the beautiful views from the top!

Barrage Vauban in Strasbourg France

Barrage Vauban

Petite France as seen from Barrage Vauban in Strasbourg France

Petite France as seen from Barrage Vauban

 

Ponts Couverts

We continued our walk towards the Ponts Couverts (#3) – a set of three bridges and four towers from the 13th century. I didn’t know where to look first – there were so many beautiful buildings all around us. In the meantime, the kids discovered a playground… (#4)

Ponts Couverts Strasbourg France

Ponts Couverts

Colourful buildings at La Petite France district Strasbourg

Buildings at La Petite France

Kids at a playground at La Petit France in Strasbourg

Kids found a playground at La Petit France

 

Discovering Petit France in Strasbourg with kids

A little building you’ll come across on Ponts Couverts

 

La Petite France

The historical centre of Strasbourg is located in a beautiful area called La Petite France (#5-6). It is part of UNESCO World Heritage Site of Grande Île. La Petite France area dates from the Middle Ages when it was home to the city’s tanners, millers and fishermen. If you visit just one area in Strasbourg, this is the place to be!

Make sure to also check the little street Rue du Bain-aux-Plantes (#9) as well. You’ll find many typical Alsace Renaissance style buildings here.

La Petite France in Strasbourg with kids

View from the bridge on Rue des Moulins

Maison des tanneurs in La Petite France district Strasbourg

Maison des Tanneurs

La Petite France Strasbourg

Probably the most iconic view of La Petite France

 

Cathedral: Bell Tower and Astronomical Clock

We then followed the river in the direction of the Cathedral of Our Lady.

The kids loved walking so close to the water, but I have to admit that I was not always at ease…

Walking along the Canal des Faux Remparts in Strasbourg with kids

Walking along the Canal des Faux Remparts in the direction of the Cathedral

 

The Cathedral (#7) is another highlight of Strasbourg and it’s a must to see it from both – outside and inside. Once the tallest building in the modern world, it’s also one of the most beautiful Gothic cathedrals of Europe.

Strasbourg Cathedral

The view of the Cathedral from Rue Merciere

 

The Cathedral of Strasbourg is very special as it only has one tower. The good news is that you can climb the bell tower for the amazing views over the city and the area as far as the Vosges mountains and the Black Forest in Germany. It’s a serious climb of more than 300 steps on a spiral staircase, but the views were absolutely worth the wait and the climb.

Aerial view over Strasbourg from the Cathedral tower

Aerial view during the climb of the Cathedral tower

The bell tower of the Cathedral of Strasbourg France

Climbing the bell tower

 

Don’t forget to take a look inside the cathedral as well. The cathedral holds many treasures: 12-14th century stained glass windows, the St. Pancrace’s altar, the 17th-century tapestries, 15th-century mural paintings, the impressive pipe organ, and the famous astronomical clock.

Interior of Strasbourg cathedral

Cathedral interior

 

The Astronomical clock of Strasbourg can be seen the whole day (inside the Cathedral, at the far right corner), but in order to see it in action at around 12.30PM you need to get a ticket (and arrive at least half an hour in advance).

Strasbourg astronomical clock

Astronomical clock inside the Cathedral

 

Strasbourg Cathedral Square

The beautiful architecture of the Cathedral Square is worth noting too. Don’t miss the Rohan Castle (Palais Rohan), Maison Kammerzell, and the view of the Cathedral from the Rue Merciere.

View over Strasbourg from the bell tower of Strasbourg Cathedral

View over the Cathedral square from the bell tower

 

Place Kleber

One more area that is nice to see is the Place Kleber, the largest square at the centre of the city of Strasbourg (#8).

Strasbourg by boat

Another great way to see Strasbourg is by taking a boat tour. If you walk from the Cathedral and past the Rohan Castle towards the river, you will see the departing point for the boats. I think that a boat tour would be fun for the kids and adults alike, and it’s a good way to see a lot without having to walk much.

Colourful buildings of La Petite France Strasbourg

Colourful buildings of La Petite France

 

More things to see and do in Strasbourg city centre

We spent about 4-5 hrs in the city centre. This included a visit to the Cathedral bell tower and a short drink. Count another hour for a boat ride, and also at least an hour for lunch. If you have more time left, consider visiting one of the many museums in the city centre. A great way to discover Strasbourg is to ‘get lost’ in the city centre and stroll the narrow picturesque streets of the old town. We found some great street art this way! If you have an hour or two to spare visit the park (read further).

Colorful street art in Strasbourg France

Colorful street art

 

Try some local food specialities: pretzels (also bretzels), tarte flambée (or flammekueche), kougelhopf cake, choucroute (sauerkraut with sausages, pork, and potatoes), and of course the Alsace wine that is drunk from the typical Alsace wine glasses with a green stem.

Pretzel for sale in Strasbourg France

Pretzel or Bretzel

Traditional Alsace Wine Glasses with Green Stem

Traditional Alsace Wine is drunk from the Glasses with Green Stem

 

Off the beaten path in Strasbourg with kids – visit Parc de L’Orangerie

We had never heard of the Parc de L’Orangerie of Strasbourg before our most recent visit to Strasbourg. But the hotel we stayed at was located just next door to it, so we decided to check it out. We just loved it! And apparently we are not only ones, as this park is rated TOP-3 Strasbourg attraction by the independent travellers on Trip Advisor.

Parc de L'Orangerie is a great place to spend a couple of hours in Strasbourg with kids

Parc de L’Orangerie

 

Parc de L’Orangerie is a really beautiful park with several restaurants, well-maintained paths, a playground, a pond with row boats, a mechanical car ride for the kids, a beautiful Josephine Pavillon, a small zoo and a farm zoo.

We couldn’t believe the number of storks we saw in this park! Every chimney and every tree top had a nest of storks. No wonder that storks are a symbol of Strasbourg and Alsace.

Storks of Alsace at Parc de L'Orangerie Strasbourg

Storks of Alsace at Parc de L’Orangerie

Pavillion Josephine at Parc de L'Orangerie Strasbourg

Pavillion Josephine with storks on every chimney

 

The small zoo (free entrance) was also well worth a visit. We saw flamingoes, and parrots, and even a monkey and a lynx. There was also a cute little desert fox that was just burying its food under the sand.

Desert fox (Fennec fox) hiding its prey in a zoo in Strasbourg

Desert fox hiding its prey

 

Many of the attractions at the park were closed in winter, but it was still a very enjoyable visit. If you are visiting Strasbourg with kids, I would definitely recommend spending a couple of hours in this park. It’s a great place for the kids to play and for the whole family to escape the hustle and bustle of the busy touristic centre of Strasbourg.

How much time do you need to visit Strasbourg?

You don’t need much time to see Strasbourg. If you only have half one day in Strasbourg, stay in the historical city centre and see the main highlights.

If you have a couple of extra hours to spare, I strongly suggest to pay a visit to Parc de L’Orangerie as well.

However, the whole Alsace region is so beautiful that I suggest that you spend at least two – three days in Strasbourg and explore beyond the city as well. You’ll find some suggestions below.

Suggested Strasbourg city tours and day trips in the area

As already mentioned, you can take a boat ride in the historical city centre. In addition, there are several bike tours (some bring you to the park de L’Orangerie as well).

Strasbourg is located in a beautiful Alsace region and it would be a pity not to see more of it. I definitely recommend a day trip to the charming town Colmar and also the wineries. You can find the best day trips in and around Strasbourg here.

Where to stay in Strasbourg

Probably the nicest area to stay in Strasbourg for tourists is in the old city centre of Strasbourg.

If you are looking for a really nice hotel right in the heart of the city, I recommend these highly rated hotels:

The lock at La Petite France Strasbourg

The lock at La Petite France with the luxury hotel Régent Petite France & Spa right above the water

 

For a more affordable luxury in the city centre check these hotels:

Colorful buildings of La Petite France in Strasbourg

 

Other great options, a bit further away from the centre:

For more accommodation options in Strasbourg check here.

*Disclosure: this post contains affiliate links. At no extra cost to you, we get a small commission if you book a hotel/ tour using these links. Thank you!

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See the main highlights of Strasbourg France with this one day itinerary that includes all the information you need to get the most of your trip. Plus a great off the beaten path tip as well. Check it out!

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The Highlights of Strasbourg with Kids was last modified: March 13th, 2017 by Jurga

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Comments

  1. It is years since I was last in Strasbourg – I took a day trip on the train there from Basel. I really enjoyed it and loved the storks so it was so lovely to see your photographs! For some reason I haven’t been back – I really need to put it into a train travel itinerary at some point as it is a great city to visit!

    1. Author

      It’s the same here, Tracy! We pass Strasbourg at least 4 times every year, but our last visit was many years ago… Glad we spent a day there this time, it was really nice!

  2. This is such a charming place I really need to make my way out there! I love the little houses and the architecture! such a fairytale!

  3. Goodness – I never knew Strasbourg was so pretty!! We actually looked to visit this area and bits of Belgium too later on this year so thanks for this Jurga, I shall mark it for a later trip.

    1. Author

      Glad to hear you found some travel inspiration, Alex. If you plan a trip to the region, make sure you also visit Colmar and maybe one or two other smaller towns in Alsace. The whole region is definitely worth a trip!

  4. I’m visiting Strasbourg in a couple of weeks so found reading this really useful. The astronomical clock looks beautiful! I’ll be checking out some of your other posts too. I’d love to visit Colmar on a day trip.

    1. Author

      Glad to hear that, Tasha. I’m afraid I never actually found the time to write a post about our visit to Colmar or Obernai. All really nice places, the whole region is so picturesque!

  5. The buildings and their reflections at La Petite France is such a perfect picture!! I would love to visit, especially since it’s UNESCO! I’m a sucker for those places

  6. I didn’t know that Strasbourg was so picturesque. Now I really want to go there. And it looks so quiet – like you guys have the place all to yourselves.

    1. Author

      It’s incredible how many people told me this – that they never knew Strasbourg was so picturesque! It’s really one of the most beautiful towns in France, and definitely worth a visit!
      About having the whole place to ourselves, it’s not really true. We visited on a sunny Saturday in February and there were quite some people in the old town centre, and also at the park. I can only try to imagine how busy it gets there in summer!

  7. This looks like an amazing place to visit! Your photos are gorgeous!

  8. What a beautiful place! i have lived in France for 9 months but I did not have the chance to visit this beautiful city! I have to go back!! 🙂

  9. What a gorgeous place to visit, Strasbourg was so picturesque. I must add this to my list of places to visit. Maybe you can come be my tour guide when I go 🙂 Beautiful pictures

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