- The capital of France’s Alsace region, with a population of ~270,000.
- The city centre (Grande Île), was the first city named a UNESCO World Heritage site.
- Located on the border with Germany, the city has a strong German influence.
- Strasbourg is the official seat of the EU Parliament (and many other EU institutions).
- Nicknames: The Capital of Europe, The Crossroads of Europe
- Currency: Euro (EUR)
- Spoken languages: primarily French (some also speak the local Alsatian).
- Best time to visit: from May to September for the best weather (warm and sunny). The city is also a delight during Christmas, when the famous Christmas markets take place.
- Arriving via airport (Strasbourg International Airport): a train runs from the airport to the city center for 3.60€, and takes just 9 minutes. A taxi ride will cost between 25 and 30 Euros.
WHERE TO STAY
Grande Île (city centre) has the upscale accommodation in the city, while mid-range hotels are typically in place de la Gare and on rue du Maire Kuss. Budget hostels can be found around 10-20 minutes away from the city center.
- The central part of the city is easily explored on foot, as main attractions are close together.
- Many visitors opt to rent bicycles when in Strasbourg – this makes for an affordable and flexible way of getting around. Bicycles are even allowed on trams.
- Buses and trams reach most areas of the city and surrounding areas. A ride costs 1.60€.
- Drinking age is 18.
- A large number of visitors and active university population keeps nightlife active.
- The cathedral area, rue des Juifs and rue des Frères are the most nightlife spots.
- Explore the quaint side streets of the city, where there are hidden taverns and bars.
UNIQUE LANDMARKS TO VISIT
- Cathédrale Notre Dame in Grand Île, built between the 12th and 15th centuries, is architecturally stunning and is Strasbourg’s focal point.
- Petite France is a small area between the two rivers, full of timber houses and cobbled streets. The area features many good restaurants and cafes.
- The French palace Palais des Rohan, built in 1681, is home to several museums.
- Self-guided walking tours of the city center are available from the tourist office for just 1€. A wide variety of different routes are specified.
- Take a walk through Petite France to see some lovely medieval architecture.
- Christmas markets are a wonderful sight in the winter. The city livens up with stalls and festivities. Try the hot wine and Christmas cookies on offer!
- Check out the son et lumière – a light display on the cathedral façade at night.
- Where to find good cheap eats: be sure to try the local sauerkraut in Stasbourg – it may appear to be expensive, but portions are large and worth every penny. Budget food options can be found along main streets of the city – look for small owner-run cafes and restaurants.
- Dangerous areas: none in particular, as Strasbourg is very safe. In any case, be sure to watch your valuables and watch out for pickpockets in tourist areas.
RECOMMENDED STRASBOURG GUIDE BOOKS
Recommended trip duration: 1-2 days