Luxembourg is a country which is comparatively much smaller than it’s name suggests. It’s a country whose capital city has the same name as that of country, a country which is so small that you can travel from north to south in max 2 hours, a country which is not very popular on travel notes (as I read it). Yet it has a lot of places to explore, lot of things to learn & to share, a completely different culture to experience and some very nice people to meet. I had the chance to explore a bit of country during my Be–Lux Trip in Autumn’14. The pre-travel picture of Lux in my mind was that it’s a country with all it’s cities/towns on top of some hills with buildings architecture resembling fairy tale stories! When you are in Lux, everything seems so different, as if you are not in Europe! It takes you completely to the other world and that’s the thing I liked about this country.
We were in Lux for 3 nights with 1 night in Luxembourg City, the capital and 2 nights in Echternach. Arrived from Brussels using Belgium Intercity train with around 3 hours of journey time. The views of Belgium Southern Part, popularly known as Wallonia, were spectacular. But as soon as we entered Luxembourg, the fog took over and we didn’t got much outside view of countryside.
We stayed at the Hotel Vauban, right at city square, Place Guillaume II. The hotel was good, clean and comfortable. And it was reasonably priced as well. Definitely recommended.
The first day, we strolled through the front end of the city (that’s how I looked while staying) – Hotel de Ville, Bibliothèque Nationale, Cathédrale Notre-Dame, Gëlle Fra, Vallée de la Pétrusse, Banque et caisse d’Epargne de l’Elat, ArcelorMittal and the street wandering in Quartier Gare (around Central Station). That really gave us the feeling of how vibrant the city is! The day ended with not-so-good-dinner-option.
The next day was cloudy, some times rainy and a bit windy. Not a perfect weather to explore the city, but given the time frame we decided to be outside anyway. This time towards the east side of the city, passing by famous buildings like Palais Grand-Ducal, Chambre ds Députés and many others. After that entered UNESCO’s world heritage fortification, The Casemates. It was an interesting walk inside the casemates and few points really provided some stunning views of the city. Came down from the casemates and continued river side towards Clausen and returned passing by Mur de Wenceslas, Wenzel and Vauban circular walks. This complete tour took almost 5-6 hours.
After the lunch, we took the bus to the oldest town in the country & our next destination – Echternach! This is a small town located amidst the beautiful nature of Mullerthal Region – Luxembourg’s Little Switzerland. It provides a lot of hiking/trekking routes. We did the E1 hike which is between Echternach & Berdorf. It was in total around 11.7 kms long and took around 5 hours ,with 1 hour stop at Berdorf. The hiking was pretty easy I would say, mainly becuase there were no steep climbs or any hard portion. You have to just walk through the forest and cover the distance. But still, very enjoyable. And most of our time we were playing spoken parlor game with Bollywood songs (commonly known as Antakshari in India). I used to play this game during childhood a lot and was one of the favorites among the younger generation at that time (we are 90’s kids…..). Not going to bend this blog towards the other side!! 🙂
We were in Echternach for 2 nights and stayed at Hôtel Le Petit Poète. It was really good. Even though the staff didn’t spoke English, we were able to understand each other somehow. We ate once at the hotel itself and the other night at Restaurant-Pizzeria Du Passage. the food at both the places was fairly good.
We visited only two places in a small country, but still I feel that the Luxembourg has many others places to visit and explore. It would be a nice country to visit during the summer time or during winter with some snow on those fairy tale sort of buildings. In any case definitely a country worth a second (or third, or fourth, or……) visit. Luxembourg is known mainly for it’s financial status, but I felt there is a cultural side to the country as well, which is yet to be explored.
I am ready to go to this country again, sometime in future. I don’t know when, but I am definitely going to be there some day!