Why Luxembourg should be on everyone's travel list
February 23, 2019
So that’s it – you decided that you want to travel to Europe and you are looking at destinations. There is Germany, France, Belgium and – right there in the middle of them – a tiny little sport called Luxembourg. 2586 km2. 82 x 57 km. Only Grand-Duchy in the world but with probably the most castles per inhabitant (Vianden castle – I’m looking at you). Why should you visit this tiny little bit of land? What is there to do? Well read on – you will be surprised:
Top 5 Reasons to visit Luxembourg
UNESCO – World Heritage
The city of Luxembourg is listed since 1994 on the Unesco World Heritage list because of the 17km of underground tunnels that were part of the military defenses of the city – dating back to the middle ages!
It is often joked that Luxembourg is one of the countries with the most Michelin stars per capita. Whether it is true or not – one thing is sure and that is that Luxembourg boasts an incredible number of delicious restaurants from the regular fast food joint to gourmet heaven.
Luxembourg has 3 official languages: Luxembourgish, French, and German. So most Luxembourgers you will meet are three lingual and most speak at least some English too. To this adds the growing number of foreign population and you are sure to find your mother tongue somewhere in the country!
Diversity of scenery
The Grand Duchy is something like 6 countries in 1 – due to the incredible variety of landscapes you will find. There is the Moselle region with its wine growers, the Red Rock Region with its industrial past, the Ardennes region with its beautiful nature, the Guttland region with its castles, the Mullerthal with its hiking trails and the capital city of course.
Easy to reach
The country features an international airport with connections to loads of European capitals and some major transportation hubs like London and Frankfurt. It is located right in the heart of Europe. Plus, Paris is 2h by train.
Top 5 Places in the City
Luxembourg City was built on a rock and as of the 17th century, the military carved 17km of tunnels out of the stone as part of the defense of the fortress. These tunnels can be visited but be sure to take a jacket even in summer, as it gets quite cold!
The Grund district is probably one of the most charming quarters of the city. Reachable via elevator from the Plateau Saint-Esprit, take a stroll through this beautiful little cobblestoned streets and visit Neumünster Abbey – formerly abbey and also a prison.
Start your tour with a walk through the Grand Rue – the shopping street of the city, continuing on to the Roude Petz (fountain), and the streets leading towards the Letzebuerg City museum.
Panoramic Elevator Pfaffenthal
Be sure to have a ride in this elevator – 180° panoramic view of the city included.
Grand Ducal Palace
If you happen to walk through the old town, a must do stop is the Grand Ducal Palace – the official residence of the Grand Duc. Be sure to take your camera and if you come in summer, the rooms inside are open to visitors.
Top 5 Sites outside the city
Nicknamed “Little Switzerland”, this part of the country boats scenic landscapes and hiking trails for all levels. Especially recommended is the beautiful hike from Consdorf via Mullerthal to Consdorf!
If you like to think of yourself as a wine expert, then a visit to the wine growers region is a must. Pleasant towns, local wine – make sure to call ahead for a tasting and maybe a tour of the factory.
Fond de Gras
Luxembourg’s industrial past at its finest – mining sites that can be visited, a historical train (from 1900!), draisines and a very informative museum. Also, head over to Belval to take a tour of the blast furnaces.
In the very north of the country, this incredibly beautiful town is home to an abbey and a castle – along with an exhibition of the world-famous “The Family of Man” by Edward Steichen.
Lac de la Haute-Sûre
Located in the north-western part of the country, it is actually a water reservoir. It is possible though to swim in it (go to Insenborn or Lultzhausen – and why not visit Esch-sur-Sûre along the way!)
Top Places for dinner to try in the city
This classy restaurant is located right over the Kasematten, in a prolonged street from the old town. The interior decor is very cozy yet elegant and there is a beautiful terrace for the summer months with a view over the Clausen area of the city. The Lobster roll is simply delicious and absolutely recommended! Also, they have a very nice gin menu. Be sure to make reservations beforehand, especially on a weekend.
This is actually a wine bar, with a nice selection of wines, either by the glass or by the bottle. The interior is quite charming as it is located in an old stone house in the old quarters of the town, with an amazing stone walled cave. Its terrace is the perfect spot for warmer evenings outside (yes, I’m a huuuge fan of terraces!). A whats best – they serve great nibbles to share or more elaborate plates.
Top Bars to go to in the city
You just gotta love, love, love this place. It is quite small (who says small, says homey) but has an upstairs seating. the cocktails are simply delicious and leave you wanting more. And they probably have the best service in town!
Gin has been the up and coming drink of the past years but this place is definitely for the true Gin aficionados! They have a long, long list of gins with the tonics to choose from. If you are new to the subject and would like to give it a try, the gins are divided into categories, from herbal & earthy to floral sweet. So you are sure to find something for your taste buds.
Top places for brunch and sweet tooth
Located right at the Place the Paris, this is a nice and quirky place for brunch. They serve delicious and more creative options, either sweet or salty (aha, avo toast!) and their homemade lemonade is very much enjoyable.
The mouthwatering smell of hot chocolate with a nice piece of cake gives you the chills? Look no further. This is a must-go place for you, a real chocolate heaven. They have a wide range of different choc spoons to choose from. Yes, you read that right – the hot chocolate comes in spoons to dip into your hot milk! And you can even buy them to take home.
How much time should you spend here? Well, for Luxembourg City a long weekend certainly does the trick. If you would like to add some excursions (because that’s the beauty of a small country, everything can easily be reached within 1h to 1h30 max!), then a week would be recommendable.
When should you go for nice events and festivals? The city hosts every year by the end of August to mid-September a fun fair called Schueberfouer – one of the oldest in Europe (founded in 1340!). There is in winter a very beautiful Christmas market (even Forbes thinks so! ).
If I’m interested in architecture and museums, where should I go? Definitely, give the MUDAM in the city a try. Take a tram ride along the Kirchberg to see some interesting buildings or head over to Haut-Martelange for the slate museum.
So there are plenty of reasons to give the beautiful country a try – and to fall in love with it!