Have you ever thought about visiting Luxembourg? One of our travel goals is to visit every country in the European Union and until recently, Luxembourg represented a big gap in our travel résumé. To remedy this, we spent 4 days in Luxembourg in July. We discovered a wealth of things to do in Luxembourg City and fun day trips from Luxembourg City to other parts of the country. Best of all, we found that we could save some serious coin on our Luxembourg sightseeing with the 3 day Luxembourg Card. Read on to learn more about Luxembourg and find out how to get the most from a Luxembourg Card on a short trip.
Getting to Luxembourg
What's the best way to get to Luxembourg? Ryanair and LuxAir fly direct to Luxembourg Airport 3-4 times a week. You can travel direct to Luxembourg from major cities in Europe on both low cost and national carriers. If you're traveling to Luxembourg City from the United States, you'll need to stop over in one of the major regional hubs like Brussels or Frankfurt. We opted to fly Luxair and boarded a teenie tiny plane from Dublin to Luxembourg. Of course, you could also make this a proper Ryanair weekend and go with the lower cost option.
One of the top reasons to splurge and fly Luxair Airlines over Ryanair or other low cost carrier is the Crémant. We got to try a glass or two of Luxembourgish sparkling wine on our flight. What a great introduction! Expect smooth sailing in Luxembourg Airport on arrival. We cleared immigration and got our bags in about 10 minutes before hoping on the public bus to Luxembourg City (2 EUR fare). Buses 16 and 29 depart every 10-15 minutes for Gare Centrale. A taxi would cost up to 25 EUR and there is a night/Sunday supplement.
SIDEWALK SAFARI SPOTLIGHT: Luxembourg is a small country neighboring Germany, France, and Belgium. If you want to extend your trip beyond Luxembourg's borders, why not spend a day in Mons, take a short layover in Brussels, or spend a weekend in Frankfurt. Each of these cities is less than 3 hours from Luxembourg by car. If you visit Luxembourg in winter, stick to the train and perhaps spend Christmas in Stuttgart or Strasbourg; a four hour ride.
How Does the Luxembourg Card Work
We are normally a little skeptical of tourist city cards. Often times, they are priced just slightly less than the individual attractions and only make sense if you do a LOT of sightseeing in a very short period of time. We were very pleasantly surprised at the value for money we got from a Luxembourg Card. At the time of writing, The Luxembourg Card cost just 28 EUR per person for a 3 day ticket and includes free public transportation across the country and free or reduced entry to museums and other tourist attractions. Purchase a Luxembourg Card at the front desk of your hotel, at various points of sale around Luxembourg City, or online. Use the Luxembourg Card App to digitally manage your purchase and quickly discover attractions that are included in the pass across Luxembourg.
Things To Do in Luxembourg
Now let's review some of the fun things to do in Luxembourg that we discovered made all the more easily accessible and cheaper thanks to our Luxembourg Card.
Old Town LuxembourgWe started our first of 4 days in Luxembourg exploring Old Town Luxembourg. Did you know that Luxembourg City including the old quarters and fortifications is a listed UNESCO World Heritage site? Explore narrow alleyways and intriguing sculptures. Check out the Grand Ducal Palace (Palais Grand Ducal in French), residence of the Grand Duke of Luxembourg. Look for the elegant spires of Notre Dame Cathedral. Take time to appreciate the Medieval architecture on Place Guillaume II. Luxembourg City even features a public sandbox! Old Town Luxembourg is pretty compact so have a wander and don't worry too much about getting lost.
|Exploring Old Town Luxembourg|
Luxembourg City History MuseumVisit the fascinating exhibits at the Luxembourg City Museum (also known as Lëtzebuerg City Museum) to get some context for your visit to Luxembourg. Did you know that the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg was previously part of Spain, France, and Austria and boasts over 1000 years of history as a fortress? The museum also has a terrace with views.
|Luxembourg City Museum|
Musée National d'Histoire et d'Art LuxembourgMusée National d'Histoire et d'Art Luxembourg permanent and temporary exhibits are included for free with the Luxembourg City Card. Check out art and artifacts some of which date back to antiquity. Musée National d'Histoire et d'Art Luxembourg also has a nice onsite cafe for a casual lunch. We opted for quiche and Luxembourgish craft beer.
|Luxembourg Sightseeing at Musée National d'Histoire et d'Art Luxembourg|
Casemates du BockHave a wander through the Casemates du Bock in Luxembourg. Admission is free with a Luxembourg Card. Casemates du Bock are a series of nearly 500 year old tunnels with peek-a-boo views. The underground passages and chambers have been used since the 17th century to defend Luxembourg. Casemates du Bock were also used as bomb shelters during World War II. As an added bonus, you'll enjoy lovely views of the Grund below.
|Casemates du Bock|
St. Michael's ChurchDon't miss St. Michael's Church in Luxembourg City. A church has stood on this spot for over 1000 years. The stained glass in St. Michael's Church is absolutely amazing. St. Michael's is less than a 5 minute walk from Casemates du Bock.
Mudam LuxembourgNow let's explore the modern side of Luxembourg City with a visit to Mudam, the Museum of Modern Art. Both the IM Pei designed building and artwork inside Mudam Luxembourg are extremely impressive. Take the bus from just in front of Casemates du Bock to Mudam Luxembourg.
Wenzel WalkThe Wenzel Walk in Luxembourg is beautiful but be prepared for a lot of up- and downhill walking. Doing the Wenzel Walk was definitely worth it to us for the photo ops! You'll find a brochure and map describing the Wenzel Walk at the Luxembourg Tourism Centre or online. The walk is named for Wenceslas II who was Duke of Luxembourg in the late 14th and early 15th century. During his rule, the Wenzel Wall (part of the so-called third ring) was built. The Wenzel Walk showcases the Casemates du Bock from a different vantage point with stunning views of the sharp spire of Abbaye de Neumünster nestled in the Grund.
|Wenzel Walk in Luxembourg City|
Taste Wines in RemichOn to the second full day of our 4 day trip to Luxembourg. Another fun thing to do in Luxembourg is take a day trip to Remich to taste Luxembourg wines. The bus to Remich is covered by the Luxembourg Card. Remich is located in the heart of the Moselle Valley. The border with Germany is just across the river from Remich.
|Wine tasting in Remich Luxembourg in the Moselle Valley|
Walk along the Moselle River in Remich and keep an eye out for the rotating Bacchus fountain showcasing the god riding a wine barrel.
|Lunch at Pavilion Desom in Remich Luxembourg|
Further along the River outside the heart of Remich town, sit down for lunch at Pavilion Desom. Vol-au-vent, entrecote and a delicious chocolate fondant washed down with Crémant and Luxembourgish Reisling made our day. Finish your wine tasting day trip in Luxembourg at the 100 year old Caves St. Martin. Cool off from the summer heat on the 40 minute cellar tour. The basic tour and tasting was free with our Luxembourg Card. We upgraded to a fancier tasting of three crémant for just 3 EUR.
|Caves St. Martin in Remich Luxembourg|
Visit Vianden CastleAll aboard! Take the train and then a bus from Luxembourg City to Vianden Castle, one of the most popular attractions in Luxembourg and an ambitious day trip from Luxembourg City. The journey from Luxembourg City to Vianden takes a little over 2 hours.
left: stained glass inside Gare Centrale in Luxembourg City Luxembourg
middle: inside the train to Remich
right: Luxembourg trains
|Visiting Vianden and Vianden Castle in Luxembourg|
|Inside Vianden Castle|
|Luxembourg treats and tea|
Tour The National Museum of Military History (MNHM) in DiekirchTraveling from Luxembourg City to Vianden includes a transfer in Diekirch. Make the most of the layover. We chilled with a beer and listened to a DJ on the square in Diekirch and posed the famous donkey fountain before heading to Diekirch's most notable attraction: The National Museum of Military History (MNHM)
|Diekirch including the poseable donkey sculpture (right)|
|National Museum of Military History|
Luxembourg City Promenade After Dark
Make sure to take at least one walk in Luxembourg City after dark. Seek out Ascenseur Plateau St Esprit Grund and watch the lights twinkle over the medieval city nestled in the valley below. The scene was simply magical when we visited.
left: Vianden Castle
Middle: Vianden town and the historic fortifications
Right: Luxembourg City after dark
What to Eat and Drink in Luxembourg
We've talked a lot about things to do in Luxembourg, especially with the benefit of a Luxembourg Card. How let's discover Luxembourgish food and more about what to eat and drink in Luxembourg City.
Kaali Kaffi in Luxembourg is an atmospheric spot to get a caffeine fix. Sit on a comfy couch surrounded by eclectic antiques and bric a brac while waiting for your coffee which is served on a vintage platter. The reggae music playing when we visited was the only surprise. Such a chill and unique place to get a coffee.
Drink Luxembourgish WineHave a Luxembourgish nightcap at Dipso Wine Republic. Or make it two! We sampled Crémant and Müller-Thurgau at Vins Fins.
left two pictures: Luxembourg wine at Dipso Wine Republic and Vins Fins.
right two pictures: Crémant and our starter at L'Annexe
Dinner al Fresco at L'AnnexeMake a reservation for an upscale dinner at L'Annexe in Luxembourg City. Sit outside to dine al fresco and start the meal with a glass of Luxembourg's finest Crémant. We enjoyed a fruit and cheese skewer plus warm fois gras amuse bouche plus scallop ravioli and seafood risotto to start. The bread served with the meal was absolutely delicious. We dined on handsomely presented wild turbot and duck breast mains accompanied by a Luxembourgish Pinot Blanc recommended by the sommelier. A trio of mini desserts rounded out the meal.
|Dinner at L'Annexe in Luxembourg City|
Where to Stay in Luxembourg
We stayed at the Park Inn by Radisson Luxembourg City Hotel which was conveniently located about a 10 minute walk from where the airport bus drops off in Luxembourg city center and is a just a 15 minute walk to Old Town Luxembourg. Gare Centrale is also 10 minutes away to catch either a train or bus for day trips around Luxembourg or beyond. The Park Inn is located above a shopping centre. You'll need to buzz the staff to send down the elevator to pick you up and bring you to the lobby. The rooms were basic and comfortable with breakfast included in our room rate. The staff was extremely friendly and helpful and made every effort to make sure we had an amazing time in Luxembourg.
SIDEWALK SAFARI SPOTLIGHT: Do you love spending time in tiny countries like Luxembourg? Why not consider:
Summary of Our Luxembourg Card Savings
So, this post is all about the value you can get from a Luxembourg Card. How did we do in the end? We spent 28 EUR per person for a 3 day Luxembourg Card. That's less than 10 EUR a day.
- Luxembourg City Museum: 5 EUR
- Musée National d'Histoire et d'Art Luxembourg: 7 EUR (temporary exhibition)
- Casemates du Bock: 7 EUR
- Mudam: 8 EUR
- Wine tasting at Caves St. Martin: 6.50 EUR
- National Museum of Military History: 5 EUR
- Vianden Castle: 7 EUR
TOTAL: 45.50 EUR
- Vianden Chairlift: 4.20 EUR
- public transportation day ticket: 4 EUR x 3 days = 12 EUR
TOTAL: 16.20 EUR
TOTAL SAVINGS: 61.70 EUR
As you can see we got a great return on our 28 EUR investment. Having the Luxembourg Card also made it that much easier to let curiosity take us where it may.
SIDEWALK SAFARI SPOTLIGHT: What other places have city cards and how does the value compare? The Salzburg Card also provides great value for money. We used a 24-hour Salzburg Card to spend one day in Salzburg Austria in winter. We spent a longer trip in Innsbruck for Christmas and took advantage of the 72 hour Innsbruck Card to save a ton on admission to various museums, attractions, and modes of transportation.