The official name of the commune, according to the geographical code of the INSEE, is "Colmars", but it is always referred locally as "Colmars-les-Alpes", even though it is not recognised in legal situations. Nevertheless, the signs on entering the village read "Colmars-les-Alpes".
Its inhabitants are called Colmarsiens.
The village is situated at the conflence of the Verdun and Lance rivers, at an altitude of 1250 metres. The site of the village is a site inscrit, a site of special natural, scientific or historical interest.
There are two other hamlets in the commune: Clignon-Haut and Clignon-Bas.
There are numerous high points in the commune. The main ones are:
The name of the village comes from a hill dedicated to Mars by the Romans ("Collo Marto"). The village was originally situated further up a hill, but the site was judged to be too cramped and not possible to expand any further, so it was abandoned. It was destroyed by Raymond de Turenne in 1390.
In the French Wars of Religion, the site was the target of several attacks: