A quick 45-minutes on the train from Zurich takes us to the beautiful charming city of Lucerne (Luzern). With an area of only 6.1 square miles and a population of ~76,000, Lucerne is the most populous city in Central Switzerland. The city’s close proximity to the Swiss Alps and famous landmarks make it the country’s most popular tourist destination.
Sites to see in Lucerne
- Walk across the Kapellbrücke or the Chapel Bridge, the world’s oldest covered wooden bridge dating back to 1332.
- Check out the Lion Monument, an impressive monument of a dying lion carved out of natural rock in memory of the heroic deaths of the Swiss mercenaries at the Tuileries in 1792.
- Climb the Musegg Wall, Lucerne’s ancient medieval walls and towers built in the 14th century. Most surprisingly, most of the walls are still intact and you walk along the ramparts and climb the towers – there are 4 towers open to the public.
- Take a boat ride on Lake Lucerne and enjoy the view. Boats operate regularly year-round with various trips lasting from 1 to 6 hours.
- Ride the gondola or the Pilatus Railway, the world’s steepest cogwheel railway, to Mount Pilatus, the mountain overlooking Lucerne with a summit of ~7,000 feet and glorious views of the Alps! Note that the Pilatus Railway is only open during the summer months but if you miss this, you can also go up the gondola. Enjoy some fondue at the top because after all, you’re in Switzerland!
- Have dinner at the Old Swiss House, a historic restaurant famous for schnitzel made at your table-side.