From the marcairie to today’s farmhouse inn

Fermes Auberges du Haut Rhin - l'association

In the past, and at least since the 9th century, some peasants from the valleys used to take their herds up to the summer pasture farms on the high stubble fields of the vosges ridges to find virgin pastures with fragrant herbs…

Many marcaires were then peasant-workers and the number of marcairies kept decreasing with industrialisation, the rural exodus and the destruction of marcairies during the two world wars.

Then, little by little, this reception activity developed and became more regular. The democratization of the car and the improvement of access conditions led to a further increase in the number of hikers and guests after the Second World War.

With the return to nature and authenticity, and the birth of green tourism, the farm inns developed, expanded and modernised.

They were called marcaires, a word taken from the Alsatian dialect, (malker), meaning one who milks cows. By extension, the marcairie became the place where cheeses were made.

With the creation of the Club Vosgien in 1872 and the first hiking trails, and the opening of a link between Munster and the Schlucht Pass in 1907, the first visitors and customers of the farmers and innkeepers appeared. The marcairies were difficult to reach by narrow mule tracks. The marcaires got into the habit of serving their customers drinks and other farm products (cheese, bacon, etc.). This is how the first reception vocation developed.

If the farmhouse formula was initially a way of breaking the isolation, it has become over time a means of bringing the urban and rural worlds closer together while providing a supplementary income. On the one hand, it allows tourists and city dwellers to escape and experience the joys of nature; on the other hand, it allows the farmer and innkeepers to maintain his activity, i.e. his mountain farm.

If you want to book a table or an accommodation, please contact the farmhouse directly by telephone.
Reservations are highly recommended, especially during holidays and weekends.
However, you can write to the farmhouse association by e-mail for all other correspondence, at this address: info@fermeaubergealsace.com

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