Capital of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg , Luxembourg City lies in the very heart of Western Europe. Ranked in the top 20 of the Mercer Quality of Living index primarily for its personal safety record and quality of life, Luxembourg offers the perfect short city naturalistic escape. The city centre occupies a picturesque site on a salient, perched high on precipitous cliffs that drop into the narrow valleys of the Alzette and Pétrusse rivers, whose confluence is in City.
Its old world charm is met by the modern glow of a number of European institutions including the European Court of Justice and the secretariat of the European Parliament. With such an outstanding mixture of historic sites and contemporary architecture Luxembourg is a modern city with deep roots. Its old town and fortress is a UNESCO World Heritage, historic buildings stand proudly firm amongst many new high-tech buildings offering a way for this mix cultured city to be the European powerhouse it is so rapidly becoming.
Top Reasons to visit:
THE VIEWS – With the City sitting on a large Early Jurassic sandstone formation it offers many cliff side views. Although not particularly large, its layout is complex, as the city is set on several levels, straddling hills and dropping into the two gorges. Its greenery against the large sandstone buildings create an abundance of picture perfect lookouts over the ramparts of the Old Town and into the valleys below.
THE HERITAGE – Everywhere you look in Luxembourg City you will find Heritage, the city is rich in it, every walk you take will be on that is full of this cities rich history. Not only will you find heritage in the City but you will also find it in the people as the centre region of the country is home to nearly 170 different nationalities that have chosen to live in or next to a capital at the heart of action.
CASEMATES DU BOCK -£- Plunge into history with a self guided tour around 23 kilometres of tunnels, built mainly in the 17th century they offer a unique feel to the history of Luxembourg . On a superficial level the casemates offer a great place for children (and adults) to get lost along narrow stone corridors and enjoy fabulous views across the Pétrusse river valley. Their real marvel however lies not in what you can see, but in spotting the various clues that hint at what must have gone on in this underground maze back in the 17th century and even in the last 100 years.
BARRIO GRUND – undoubtedly the most picturesque parts of this beautiful city. Barrio Grund offers the perfect surroundings for a visually rich stroll around the lowest part of the city. Experiencing the tranquillity of this corner of the city will captivate your mind as you are transported into a real life fairytale. Once you have made your way down the cobbled pathway you can easily reach the heights of the city centre via a conveniently placed elevator that rises back up through the sandstone in a matter of minutes.
Top Tourist Traps:
MUDAM – ££ – Luxembourg’s Modern Art museum is the perfect place to escape a rainy day or shelter from the basking sun. Its fabulous architecture by the well-known architect Ming Pei who has also designed the new part of the Louvre in Paris; has converted the fortress Thüngen into a strategic place of artistic creation. With not much of a permanent exhibition on show you can guarantee to get a different experience on every visit. Once you have admired MUDAM from the inside be sure to also explore the surrounding grounds as they offer breathtaking views of the city from above looking down into the valleys.
Best City-wide Events:
NATIONAL DAY – Originally meant to celebrate the Grand-Dukes birthday, the festivities all over the Grand-Duchy start on the eve of National day, June 22nd. With a solemn changing of the guard at the Grand-Ducal palace around 4:00 pm kicking off the celebrations. In the evening a torchlight procession takes place throughout the capital city. The public areas and the narrow streets of Luxembourg transform into a huge open-air party with free concerts, DJ’s and dance floors all over the city. It is the moment to try some local specialties such as sausages, potato fritters, Luxembourgish beer or wine …Before all being rounded-up with fireworks launched from the Fort Thüngen.
BLUES’N JAZZ RALLYE – Against the backdrop of the impressive Unesco world heritage site, 50 different Jazz and Blues bands perform in 11 venues and 12 bars in the lower town of Clausen and Grund. “Marching Bands” also play in public areas with the party often going on untill the early hours of the morning.
When to go & Daily costs?
- Basic lunchtime menu (including a drink) in the business district: £14
- Combo meal in fast food restaurant (Big Mac Meal or similar): £9
0.5 l (16 oz) domestic beer in the supermarket: £1
- Taxi trip on a business day, basic tariff, 8 km. (5 miles): £24
- 1 cocktail drink in downtown club: £8
- Double room in a standard hotel: £67
- Museum entry: £6-9