Called as the Gibraltar of the North, Luxembourg is a tiny and picturesque city built and fortified between the Alzette and Pétrusse Rivers. It’s also one of the safest and richest places on earth.
Ironically, the reason why I ended up on the upscale streets of Luxembourg was a cheap deal last summer. Knowing I only had a couple of hours in the city, I tried to make an efficient route to explore as much as possible. Luckily, Luxembourg turned out to be perfect for sightseeing on foot.
Starting from the Regus Central Station, the old town is a 20 minutes walk. Unlike many other cities, the scenery between the station and the old town is actually quite beautiful in Luxembourg. On the way, there are two significant touristic attractions, Notre-Dame Cathedral and the Monument of Remembrance along with nice views of trees and bridges.
Built in 1613, Notre-Dame Cathedral was enlarged and restored in 1938. Structured in Baroque style, it happens to be the only cathedral in the country. The National Monument to the Resistance and Deportation also stands at the cemetery of the cathedral.
The Monument of Remembrance, known as the Golden Lady, consists of a 21-meter tall obelisk and a statue atop representing Nike, the goddess of victory. The Golden Lady holds a laurel wreath, as if placing it on the whole nation from above. Located in the Constitution Square, the monument is dedicated to the people who died during the World Wars and the Korean War.
Nearby the Notre Dame Cathedral and the Golden Lady, you can already get a glimpse of the old town. Named as Haute Ville, the area displays the historical presence of Luxembourg since the 10th century.
Haute Ville in the gorge of the River Alzette is famous for the underground fortifications. The Bock Casemates were built in the 18th century and they are under the protection of UNESCO as a heritage site. The casemates can be visited during the day.
The quarter Grund is the valley below the old town and provides a magnificent view, right next to the River Alzette. Taking a walk here is a must if you are in Luxembourg.
While the old town from the 10th century is enchanting with historicity, Luxembourg is actually full of contrasts. If you head towards the Kirchberg quarter, you will find yourself in a different world. Kirchberg represents the modern and commercial side of Luxembourg, that is being the headquarter of banks and important institutions.
All in all, Luxembourg is truly beautiful and easy to explore on foot. In fact, after seeing all of these, I even had the time to enjoy a cup of coffee and get myself a photo with the view.