Top 10 Things to Do and See in Mulhouse, France

Josh Wright

Mulhouse is an intriguing city. Famous for its museums, it has been certified a ville d’art et d’histoire by the French government. But it was also a big player in the Industrial Revolution and maintains impressive production levels today, so much so that it has been dubbed “the French Manchester.” Take a look through our guide to find out why Mulhouse has the best of both worlds.

Cité de l’Automobile

1. Cité de l’Automobile


Cité de l’Automobile

A vast complex housing around 400 classic cars, Cité de l’Automobile is the largest car museum in the world. The “Motorcar Experience” exhibits documents the history of the car from its conception in the late 19th century through to the present day, “Motor Racing” features race cars from as far back as 1908, and “Motorcar Masterpieces” consists of 80 prestige vehicles from the 1920s, 30s, and 40s. A special area is set aside for the fastest car in the world, the Bugatti Veyron, and its Autodrome exhibition track allows you to see the exhibits in motion.
Address & telephone number: 15 Rue de l’Épée, Mulhouse, France, +33 3 89 33 23 23

Cité du Train | © Klaus Nahr/FlickrCité du Train | © Klaus Nahr/Flickr

2. Cité du Train


Cité du Train

Not to be outdone, train enthusiasts have established the biggest railway museum in the world not far from Cité de l’Automobile. Cité du Train also features three main exhibits: in “The Platforms of History”, the story of rail travel is told in eight stages; “The Train Trail” details the golden age of the railways, which is said to be 1844 to 1960; and “The Railway Panorama”, an outdoor exhibition space, contains an authentic railway turntable and an 1883 steam locomotive to go with it. The exhaustive scope of the museum is certainly equal to that of its counterpart.
Address & telephone number: 2 Rue Alfred de Glehn, Mulhouse, France, +33 3 89 42 83 33

Empty stage | © Ryan Brownell/WikiCommonsEmpty stage | © Ryan Brownell/WikiCommons

3. L’entrepot

Bar, Restaurant


The ivy that has almost swallowed up the façade of this building hides a performing arts theater with a difference. In this intimate and compact venue, the audience’s proximity to the stage promotes interaction between the artists and themselves. What really sets the “Warehouse” apart, however, is the restaurant and bar found within the same building, where audience members can share a drink with the performers after the show. As a “théâtre d’humour”, L’entrepot has a convivial atmosphere that is enhanced by the hearty and unpretentious food.
Address & telephone number: 50 Rue du Nordfeld, Mulhouse, France, +33 3 89 54 46 31

Musée de l’Impression sur Etoffes de Mulhouse | © Ji-Elle/WikiCommonsMusée de l’Impression sur Etoffes de Mulhouse | © Ji-Elle/WikiCommons

4. Musée de l’Impression sur Etoffes de Mulhouse


Musée de l’Impression sur Etoffes de Mulhouse

This highly educational museum dedicated to printed fabrics covers all aspects of the subject. Printing demonstrations of traditional techniques using wooden board machines and copper rollers can be witnessed. Information about all stages of production, from design to chemical treatments and the actual printing is given. The impact of the industry on Mulhouse and the results of increasing mechanization are detailed. Antique machines, printing blocks, and a wide selection of textiles are on display, while printing workshops are run for those wanting a more hands-on experience.
Address & telephone number: 14 Rue Jean Jacques Henner, Mulhouse, France, +33 3 89 46 83 00

Musée EDF Electropolis | © Arnaud 25/WikiCommonsMusée EDF Electropolis | © Arnaud 25/WikiCommons

5. Musée EDF Electropolis


Musée EDF Electropolis

Mulhouse’s museum of electricity conveys the sociological, technical, economic, and cultural impact of the power source that has revolutionized the way we live our lives. Their collection amounts to over 12,000 objects related to the discovery of electricity, including industrial and domestic appliances. Its history is charted, from ancient peoples’ conception of lightning through to the Age of Enlightenment and right up to our usage in the 21st century. Multimedia shows, technical presentations, and demonstrations of phenomena like static electricity add an element of fun to the education.
Address & telephone number: 55 Rue du Pâturage, Mulhouse, France, +33 3 89 32 48 50

La Société Industrielle de Mulhouse | © Ji-Elle/WikiCommonsLa Société Industrielle de Mulhouse | © Ji-Elle/WikiCommons

6. La Société Industrielle de Mulhouse

La Société Industrielle de Mulhouse

This non-profit organisation was founded in 1826 by a committee of Mulhouse industrialists, its aim to aid in the development of local industry. Since then, the SIM has diversified, adding philanthropy to their list of goals and working to bring economic and social progress to the region. Many of the scientific museums in Mulhouse and Alsace as a whole are supported by the SIM, with the organisation’s artistic, scientific, and technological collections being housed within these institutions or at the SIM’s headquarters. One of their most recent think tanks concerns sustainable development.
Address & telephone number: 10 Rue de la Bourse, Mulhouse, France, +33 3 89 66 93 39

Musée Historique de Mulhouse | © Antoine Sipos/Flickr Musée Historique de Mulhouse | © Antoine Sipos/Flickr

7. Musée Historique de Mulhouse


Musée Historique de Mulhouse

The history of Mulhouse from prehistory to the present day is unfolded here, in a 16th century building that was formerly the town hall. The exterior of the building is lavishly decorated with murals in the Rhenish Renaissance style, and has been designated a national historic monument. Exhibits of painting, sculpture, and historical artifacts are displayed; of particular note is the 25-pound Klapperstein, or “gossips’ stone,” which was hung around the neck of the most loose-lipped of Mulhouse’s inhabitants during festival days some centuries ago.
Address & telephone number: 4 Rue des Archives, Mulhouse, France, +33 3 89 45 43 20

Temple Saint-Étienne | © pilot_micha/FlickrTemple Saint-Étienne | © pilot_micha/Flickr

8. Temple Saint-Étienne


Temple Saint-Étienne

Measuring 97 meters from the ground to the top of its bell tower, this 1859 Calvinist church in the Gothic Revival style is one of the tallest Protestant religious buildings in Europe. It also contains the largest set of bells of any Protestant church in France. Although only being one-and-a-half centuries old, Temple Saint-Étienne contains much older components: its choir stalls were made in 1637, and its remarkably vivid leaded-glass windows originate from the 14th century. The structure sits in Mulhouse’s main square and occasionally hosts concerts and exhibitions.
Address & telephone number: Place de la Réunion, Mulhouse, France, +33 3 89 46 58 25

Parc Salvator | © M.Strīķis/WikiCommonsParc Salvator | © M.Strīķis/WikiCommons

9. Parc Salvator

Parc Salvator

Parc Salvator, the oldest public garden in the city, is located in the eastern portion of downtown Mulhouse. Its layout is in the Romantic style and it is known for its unusual shell-shaped auditorium. The park is home to many rare trees, like the Virginia tulip tree, California incense cedar, and Japanese pagoda tree. This is attributed to the active role Mulhouse played in the Industrial Revolution, which took local businessmen all over the world and resulted in them bringing back exotic species. Cultural events ranging from theater performances and circus acts to music concerts and film screenings are held here on Thursdays in the summer.
Address: Place Salvator, Mulhouse, France

Tour du Belvédère | © Serge Nueffer/WikiCommonsTour du Belvédère | © Serge Nueffer/WikiCommons

10. Tour du Belvédère


Tour du Belvédère

The top of this 20 meter high observation tower, perched upon Rebberg Hill, is the perfect vantage point from which to gaze out upon Mulhouse and the Vosges Mountains in the distance. As the city is situated close to the borders with Germany and Switzerland, you may also be able to see the Black Forest and, on a clear day, the Swiss Alps. An orientation table marked with directions and points of interest allows you to get your bearings.

Address: Rue du Belvédère, Mulhouse, France

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