On our way to a Barge trip in Germany, we spent four days in Luxembourg, only because we were to meet our tour guide there for our upcoming barge trip on the Mosel River. We knew nothing about the city or the country, except to know the country was small and thought to be politically neutral. It’s actually a member of the EU. We didn’t even know that the capital city shared the same name as the country. What a great surprise this city was — we loved our visit there.
Long a fortress city because of its natural geographic location, the city is lived on multiple levels and buildings are integrated into the rock walls.
We stayed at the Grand Hotel Cravat, a lovely, genteel hotel that seemed like old-world to us. The lobby includes a photo of General Omar Bradley who apparently stayed there during WWII; the photo is addressed to Mr. Cravat, the original owner of the hotel.
We opted to have breakfast included, and that was wise as the streets don’t have a lot of small bakeries as might be found in other European cities. The hotel breakfast was lovely, with fresh-baked croissants and baguettes plus much more.
Beautiful walkways at the upper and lower levels. The guarded palace of the Grand Duchy is on the upper level and was close to our hotel. Well, our hotel was close to everything — all walkable.
The lower “old town” neighborhood of Grund is accessed through an elevator in the middle of this set of judicial buildings. Of course there are plenty of steps too. Well worth the visit.
Also well worth the visit is the Lëtzebuerg City History Museum. It’s a beautiful, multi-storied building that illustrates the 1000 year history of the City. We found it difficult to see where the old stone structures ended and the new building began. It’s very well integrated into the physical setting.
We initially went to the museum because we saw an advertisement for a display of their 100 best posters through the ages, but then were disappointed to find that display was to open the following day — we were a day too early. When we asked if we could use the same ticket to come the following day, the nice young man at the desk invited us to the Grand Opening that evening at six PM. More good fortune! After speeches by the mayor and the Museum Director (we think that’s who they were – it was all in German in this largely French-speaking city), there was as much free wine and small finger food that one could eat.
The poster display is excellent — it’s there until January 14, 2024 if you are going.
The Bock Casements are what is left from the old fortifications, now a nice area to walk through.
We loved our time in Luxembourg; the beautiful weather helped make it memorable.
- Most restaurants are closed from 2 until 6 PM, although some lunch places are open until 4 if they don’t serve dinner.
- The city’s downtown is only 20 minutes or so from the airport by taxi, and costs a little less than 50 Euros; taxis accepted credit cards. The bus system also serves the airport and would be less expensive.
- As we noted, there are not an abundance of street-side bakeries. We were glad that our hotel room included breakfast.
- Hotel recommendation: Grand Hotel Cravat, 29 Boulevard Roosevelt.
- Restaurant recommendation: les Matelos for Brittany-style crepes served with cider
- (Hotel and restaurant recommendations from Frank of International Bike and Barge Tours.)
- Date of travel: October, 2022
11 thoughts on “Hidden Gem in the Wide Open: Luxembourg”
Looks like a beautiful old city to wander around. Lucky you for the grand opening!
Hi Evelyn, So nice to read your blog again…what a pleasant surprise Luxembourg was…and your photos are so professional! You make me feel like I’m on the trip with you! I also read Pacific Grove, the top of my favorite places list…you did it proud! So happy you are once again traveling and writing. 💕💕Pauline
Hi Pauline! Thanks for reading! Feels good to travel again. – Ev.
Evelyn, I’m so happy to see your blog again. Why would I need to plan a trip to Luxembourg when I can just plan a trip like you and Irv took? Thanks for sharing your lovely photos as well as the travelogue text!! Hugs, Claire
Thanks for reading! It feels so good to be able to move around the world again.
I remember passing through Luxembourg sometime in the 60s as I was hitchhiking my way through Europe. My accommodations were a youth hostel, not a lovely hotel. Nevertheless, I remember the charm of this city very well. Thanks for this lovely reminder and your pictures, which tell a beautiful story in themselves.
Thanks, Loretta! Hitch-hiking Europe in the 60s sounds like some stories we all want to hear!
Great to see and hear of your travels once more. There you are back in the saddle. Thank you Ev
All public busses are free in Luxembourg city and I think all over the country. We used the free bus to and from the airport.
Thank you! Great to know.