Luxembourg is an attractive country with a green and picturesque landscape and many historical sites within easy reach of one another. The northern third of the country is the Ardennes, set in beautiful forested hills and valleys.
Travel back in time as you witness 1,000 years of history in a mere 100 minutes. The Wenzel Walk takes you through Luxembourg’s oldest quarters, allowing you to experience the culture and history of this rich city. Its oldest sections were declared a UNESCO World Heritage site. Among other fascinating sights, you’ll view the Bock Promontory; Castle Bridge, built in 1735 from red sandstone; and the Church of St. Ulric, the city’s oldest parish church. To learn more about the development of this multi-faceted city, history enthusiasts can view audio-visual programs in the archaeological crypt of the Bock Promontory and in the Jacob Tower.
National Museum of Military History
Get the inside scoop on military operations in the Ardennes at The National Museum of Military History in Diekirch, which emerged from the Diekirch Historical Museum. The Museum offers an in-depth education about the Battle of the Bulge in Luxembourg. There’s an extensive collection of weapons, uniforms, military equipment, along with soldiers’ personal belongings, photographs, and maps. Another part of the museum caters to the history of Luxembourg’s own armed forces.
Wind your way through a network of several levels of underground fortifications dating back to 1644 that are known as the Bock Casemates. Originally 14 miles of underground defensive passageways, some as deep as 131 feet, the casemates have earned the title of "Gibraltar of the North." The archaeological crypt is the site of an audiovisual presentation conveying the history of this massive site, deemed the cradle of Luxembourg. It’s listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site.
Vianden Castle and Victor Hugo House
Overlooking the River Our, you’ll find the bold, brilliant, and skilfully restored Vianden Castle (photo above). Enter this enchanting 11th century gem to admire antique weaponry and armour, ornate furniture, and Gobelin tapestry. Afterwards, stroll through the charming medieval town of Vianden with its gothic churches, quaint lanes, and fortified towers. French Writer Victor Hugo stayed in Vianden during his exile. Stop by the newly renovated Victor Hugo House – operating as a museum since 1935 - where you’ll find original works and furniture, along with other personal documents. As you approach the museum, look for Rodin’s famous bust of Victor Hugo.
Beaufort Castle in Echternach
The ruins of the Beaufort Castle in Echternach are a great tribute to medieval times. The 12th century feudal case is situated near a lovely lake graced with delicate swans. For more daring visitors, there’s even a torture chamber. Summertime brings plays and concerts to this cherished area.
Nature lovers will delight in the brilliance of the Butterfly Garden in Grevenmacher. In just a single visit to this unique hothouse, you’ll discover everything you need to know about butterfly species from all over the world. You’ll even find exotic tropical plants. If you time it right, you may very well witness butterfly births in the "hatchery."
"Little Switzerland": Luxembourg is a hiker’s paradise, and there are countless opportunities to witness its many assets on foot. This is especially true in "Little Switzerland", a region with a network of marked trails that allows hikers to embark on peaceful strolls or opt for more challenging routes with rope-climbing and bold cliffs. There are also unique rock formations, awe-inspiring waterfalls, and delightful valleys. The Good Land is another area ripe for walkers who want to stroll along the Attert or Eisch rivers, or just meander from village to village. Brilliant apple trees and orchards are in full bloom every spring.
Another sights in Luxembourg: Luxembourg City History Museum, The Bank Museum , Musee d’Art Moderne Grand-Duc Jean , Moselle Valley
Breakfast is usually eaten between 7 and 9 am, lunch at noon, and dinner around 7 pm. Some people have coffee around 4 pm. The main meal of the day was traditionally at midday, but for most people who work, lunch is light and dinner is now the main meal. For a family meal, dishes are placed on the table so everyone can help themselves. When guests are present, each person’s plate is usually prepared in advance. Hosts expect their guests to ask for or have second helpings, and may feel offended if they do not. Both hands, but not the elbows, are kept above the table at all times. It is considered improper to have one’s hands resting in the lap during a meal. Luxembourgers insist on punctuality for most social occasions. For evening dinners, arrive 15 minutes later than what is stated on the invitation. Dinner is usually a social occasion and a time to enjoy good food, wine and discussion. When finished eating, place your knife and fork side by side on the plate at the 5:25 position. To quietly signify that you are not finished or that you would like more food, cross your knife and fork in the middle of your plate. Leaving food on your plate is impolite.
Holidays and Celebrations
Cycling and walking are popular; part of the famous Tour de France bicycle race passes through Luxembourg Religious holidays include Shrove Tuesday (February), Easter (including Monday), Ascension, Whit-Monday, Assumption (15 August), All Saints’ Day (1 November), All Souls’ Day (2 November), and Christmas (24-26 December). Christmas and Easter are the most important holidays.
In addition to some national holidays, several religious holidays are celebrated in Luxembourg. National holidays include New Year’s Day, Labour Day (1 May), the Grand Duke’s Birthday-also called National Day (23 June)-and Fair Day (early September). Fair Day occurs during fair season in the capital city, where an ancient shepherd’s market serves as the fairground and many traditional displays and events focus on sheepherding.