We had an easy train trip to Luxembourg, it's only about an hour from Trier, Germany--and that's counting several stops. We pulled in to Luxembourg station around 11 am.
Our hotel is right across from the train station, so it was quick and easy to get checked in. We were given a nice room upgrade:
Nice view of the train station right across the street:
We even have a teeny-tiny balcony:
When we checked in the nice young man gave us a map of the city, showing us how to get to the pretty old town area of Luxembourg city. He said that today was a bank holiday, so all shops and banks would be closed, but all the restaurants would be open. Darn--that was not a nice surprise!
Oh, well--we weren't really here to shop, so it shouldn't be a problem.
We dropped of our suitcases and headed out to explore the city. We looked at our map and chose the best route in to the old town area. As we walked the first 3 blocks or so, we noticed it was pretty deserted looking--very few people on the streets--all the shops were closed--and we didn't see a single restaurant open! Well--McDonald's doesn't count.
We continued on, and found that the scenery was improving, but still very quiet. The old town area is really very pretty--the architecture looks very French!
We crossed a tall bridge--Luxembourg City is built on two sides of a deep ravine, and the views from the bridge were pretty:
Just across the bridge we came to a nice WWII memorial with an eternal flame. As this year is the 70th anniversary of the end of the war there have been many celebrations and ceremonies all over Europe.
The eternal flame, there were several floral tributes, including one from the US Embassy:
We passed a couple of churches, and since they were both open we took a quick peek inside:
Small side entrance:
Statue of The Grand Duchess Charlotte:
Odd building decoration:
We came to another bridge, where there were sections of an old city wall:
This was an interesting area--in addition to the defensive wall and watch towers, there are 14 miles of tunnels and numerous caves that were used during war times from the mid 1600's until the mid 1800's. They were also used as bomb shelters during WWII. The Bock Casements were opened to the public in 1933, and one can take the looong stairways down into the ravine and explore the 11 miles of tunnels and caves that are open. Not for us, though!
The neighborhood at the bottom of the ravine is called the Grund, and there some pretty houses, parks and gardens. Supposedly, there's an elevator down--but we didn't see it.
By now it was mid afternoon, and we were definitely ready for some lunch. We walked back across the bridge, and wandered through the old town area until we came to a big square. We were happy to see that it was busy--lots of people and many cafes open. We picked one with outside seating, and settled in for a nice lunch. I was thrilled that the menu was in French--at least I could understand what I was ordering. The waiters spoke French--so I was happy!
We each ordered a small steak with fries--the meat was tender and delicious and the fries were perfect--even without catsup!
The view was lovely--I could almost believe I was in Paris!
We spent the rest of the afternoon wandering around the old town area--it's pretty and the architecture is very French. We walked back across the first bridge and into the newer area of town.
View from the first bridge:
We weren't finding much of interest, or much of anything even open, so we walked back to our hotel and relaxed for a couple of hours. About 7 we were hungry for a little bite of dinner. As our options were very limited, we just ate a quick bite at the hotel cafe right next door.
It had been a short but nice visit to Luxembourg City--we do wish it hadn't been a bank holiday, though. Probably not worth a return visit--but it's a lovely city.
Good night from Luxembourg!