Rigi to the left of me, Pilatus to the right, here I am - Luzern, Switzerland.


 
Morning sunrise over the city of Luzern with Mount Rigi in the background.
Morning sunrise over Luzern

When I first arrived in Luzern I was just coming off the back of a 4 year stint in Latin America and for the first year I have to say I completely struggled to adapt to life here. I didn't get the system, I hated the rules and regulations, I never understood why everything was ridiculously over priced and expensive and even the native speakers were painful to listen to. However, with a little help and a new found perspective, life here seems to be working out pretty well and below I can tell you why this little city and its surrounding features have kept me engaged for the past two years, but could I honestly live here for the rest of my life?


Luzern attracts nearly 10 million foreign visitors per year and that is without the influx of the local tourists passing through this beautiful city on a daily basis, although Zurich, Basel and Geneva are more populated cities, it is still a busy port of call and has a very metropolitan feel about it.

Being nestled in the centre of Switzerland it seems like everything passes through here and with that being said you do have some of the best access to all of the surrounding scenery that this Alpine country has to offer. With the Swiss all running like clockwork you can't deny they don't have a wonderful transport system here to, it is highly efficient to say the least and from experience the most you will ever be late anywhere is 30 seconds; it's that good.


Not only does Luzern have a great access point to its surroundings, but it can also hold its own with its natural beauty and life style dependent on what you are looking for. It's actually an easy going city and although I am not fond of the winter here, in the summer its like a flower in full bloom, with bars and restaurants bustling along the river Reuss and Vierwaldstattersee (Lake Luzern) the city centre becomes the focal point for shopping for all those looking for a Swiss Army knife, chocolate and cheese.

When you first arrive in Luzern I have no doubt that on your list of things to do here or first port of call is the wonderful and breathtaking Mount Pilatus and at it's highest peak Tomlishorn. Sitting at 2,128 meters (6,983 ft) above Sea level this is the most spectacular view you will get of Luzern in all it's glory and the beauty that surrounds it's 80,000 inhabitants who live here. Not only is Mount Pilatus an adventure to hike up or down with a bottle of Tanqueray gin (which I highly recommend), but you can also take an amazing ride on what is the steepest cogwheel railway in the world from Alpnachstad or jump on a cable car from Kriens.

Secondly the Hammetschwand Elevator built in 1905, yes over one hundred years old and it still holds the record for the highest external elevator in Europe since its construction. Bringing you to the top of Burgenberg and giving you a 360 degree view of Lake Luzern, it is one of the most visited tourist attractions in Luzern. Not only is the Hammetschwand Elevator an experience on its own, you also have the famous Bergenstock hotel and Resort, as stated on their official website "Its a World of its own" with its four hotels, nine bars and restaurants and a wellness centre you will not be disappointed to take a break here and absorb the wonderful views of Lake Luzern.


Another wonderful place of interest that should be on the list whilst in Luzern is Verkehrshaus der Schweiz (The Swiss Museum of Transport). I found this personally fascinating due to the fact I could be a child for an hour or two whilst enjoying the many features it has here - including the Lindt Boutique chocolate tour, film theatre, planetarium and spectacular car show. This is great for families looking to entertain the minions or if you just want to fill your individual thirst of aviation and navigation, the transport museum offers a little for everyone here so its defiantly worth a look. Check out the Cube.

 

Contents


  • When in Luzern

  • Kapellbrücke

  • Glacier Gardens

  • Hofkirche St. Leodegar

  • Bourbaki Panorama Luzern

  • Museggmauer and Mannliturn

  • Jesuitekirche

  • KKL Luzern

  • Favourite eats and drinks

  • Montana

  • Sunset bar

  • Karel Korner

  • Suite

  • Das Weisse Schaf (The White Sheep)

  • Chateau Gütsch

  • Mill'Feuille

  • Bierliebe & Friends

  • Shamrock Irish Pub

  • Also a worthy visit

  • Walks and scenery

  • Sonnenburg

  • Rotsee

  • Meggen Forest

  • Meggenhorn Castle

  • Final thoughts

 

When in Luzern

Luzern is separated in two parts, the old town which is well known for its medieval architecture, historic sites and commercial shops and the new town, which will give you a delightful modern metropolitan vibe with its bustling cafes, restaurants and bars that are scattered throughout the area.

Below are a few of my favourite places of interest that I have found to be both interesting and beautiful during my time here in Luzern.

Kapellbrücke -

Probably the main tourist attraction in the city, the Kapellbrücke (chapel bridge) built in 1333 is the worlds oldest surviving truss bridg