Koestlach has a rich history that you can discover through the heritage circuit. Two options are available:
1) A historical tour through the village to discover the prestigious furnishings in the St. Léger church, but also the Chapel of Our Lady of Sorrows,the legends of Kugele and the village of Erzach, the presbytery by Nicolas Delfis and the remains of an ancient Gallo-Roman settlement.
2) 2 hour 30 min or 3 hour walking tour of that takes you up the slopes of Burgerwald to explore the Celtic oppidum of Kasteberg before visiting the village (blue ring signposting, distance 7 km, 215 m elevation ).
The district of Huningue and its numerous communities are represented in the Museum, as well as the Rhine River and its bridges. Since September 1979, the Museum has been installed in a 17th century building, called “casino”, recently rehabilitated by the City. Located near the former Place d'Armes (parade ground), nowadays Place Abbatucci, it used to house the Quartermaster's office and the department of fortifications. On display: models, layouts, engravings, portraits, letters of patent relating the history of the fortress, its three sieges and its defenders. Other documents are related to the events of the Revolution, the garrison town and the industrial city as well as episodes of the two World Wars.
The Sundgauvian Museum is an excellent introduction to the diverse landscapes of this scenic region located in South Alsace (Sund-Gau = Southern region). The headwaters of the Ill River are there. The river flows through a region full of streams, ponds and woods, stretching between the Swiss border and the cities of Basel, Mulhouse and Belfort.
The Museum is housed in a beautiful Renaissance mansion, the former bailiffs' residence. It presents the region's history, life, traditions and artists. The collections feature:
- Mineralogy, fossils, Prehistory, Paleontology (cut stones from Oberlarg, pottery (Linear Band Pottery - Neolithic II)...
- Gallo-Roman and Merovingian artifacts. The local history, geography and traditions are represented by numerous documents and significant objects: portraits, furniture, a Rhenish Renaissance cupboard, polychrome wedding cupboards, earthenware stoves (Kunst) and various dishes, pots and pans.
- A room is devoted to the local costumes, lingerie and hats.
- The Fine Arts department exhibits remarkable paintings by J.J. Henner, L. Lehmann, A. Zwiller, J. Benner, A. Schachenmann, R. Breitwieser as well as sculptures by F. Voulot and antique statues.
The WWI battles erupted in Sundgau fromAugust 1914 onwards. The front line was afew kilometres from Illfurth, on the Heidwillerside, and cut the Sundgau in two. This circuit,starting from Burnkirch church, enables you todiscover several multi-purpose constructionswhich served as munitions depots, observationposts and artillery emplacements, not forgettingthe numerous bunkers presentedon the site. Distance : 6.5 km (2.5 hours).
This path reanimates the memory of thisunique place where, during WWI, three armiesfaced each other, only separated by afragile line: the frontier. Food for thought,this Franco-Swiss pathway allows visitors toapprehend, in the silence of the forests andmeadows, the fragility of our civilisation’s values: peace, tolerance and fraternity. Manyfortifications have been restored.Distance: 7.5 km (2.5 hours) depart from Larginfarm (Switzerland) or the site of the Millbetween Pfetterhouse and Mooslargue.
Départ situé entre Moos et Pfetterhouse 68480
Footpath retracing presence of Moroccanrifle regiment posted on Maginot line, alongSwiss frontier, 1939 - 1940. 3 circuits: 2.6 km(1 hour) - 3.6 km (1.5 hours), 5.6 km (2.5hours). Depart from the ‘‘Charrière’’.Take advantage of your visit to Winkel todiscover the source of the river Ill and theBeech Alley. Route map on sale at the Officeof Tourism.
2 km path in Bettlach forest links three imposingMaginot Line forts, built between 1937 and1940. Explanatory panels relate the history ofthe Maginot Line, the colossal effort requiredand the ephemeral role it played at the startof WW2. Longer route available (7.6 km ; 3.5hours.) Route map on sale at the Office of Tourism, Departure fromBettlach Town Hall