Plan Your Trip To Lucerne

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Ideal duration: 2 days

Best Time: December or January for ski trips and winter activities, July to August for summer lovers. Read More

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"The City of Bridges and Churches"

Lucerne Tourism

Lucerne, capital of the Canton of Lucerne, is the most populous city in central Switzerland and is the hub of all communication, transportation and government of the area. Located on the shore of Lake Lucerne, it is surrounded by the regional mountains of Rigi, Pilatus and Staserhorn, and draws a lot of tourists coming into Switzerland owing to it's absolutely beautiful setting.

Lucerne is a favorite among tourists simply for the beauty that the city beholds. The mountainous view, the lake side setting, and the chilly weather all add to the aura of the city. It is the first stop for tourists before embarking on their journey of central Switzerland. Due to the fact that the river Reuss also cuts through the city, draining the lake, Lucerne is home to a number of bridges, the most popular of which is the Chapel Bridge, a 200m long wooden covered bridge, considered to be the oldest such bridge in Europe. Inside the bridge are paintings depicting the history of Lucerne. Other points of interest in the town include the Museghmauer, a wall built in the 14th century to protect the city, and the twin towers of the Church of St. Leodegar form an iconic part of the townscape. A trip to a Swiss city is incomplete without visiting a Swiss watch shop, which are available aplenty in this city. Lucerne is home mostly to the German speaking population of the country, which is also the official language of the Canton.

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Currency in Lucerne

Switzerland are still using the Swiss Francs as their currency, and have not switched over to the Euro. However the Euro is accepted in hotels and upscale restaurants.

Shopping in Lucerne

Lucerne is very well known for it's market of Swiss watches. Various shops dotted around the city provide some of the most extravagant watch collections for you to pick from. Do give House of Chronoswiss in the city centre a visit. International luxury brands and local Swiss brands are all covered in a wide variety of Fashion boutiques as well. The two main markets are one each in the old town and the new town. And of course, Swiss chocolates of various tastes and flavours can be seen throughout the city.

Nightlife in Lucerne

Nightlife in Lucerne, like any big European city, is up to the mark. It has several clubs and bars with amazing ambiences, some even perched on roof tops providing quite the atmosphere. Clubs such as Blue and Casineum are fancy and popular. The Loft Club has also gained quick popularity in the city.

History of Lucerne

This history of Lucerne dates back to the 8th century, to the fall of the Roman Empire, when the Germanic Allemanics worked to expand their influence in the region. It was acquired by Murbach Abbey in the 9th century, from which Lucerne finally gained it's independence in 1178, and the city was formally founded in the same year. By the end of the 13th century, the Habsburg empire took over the city. To defeat this rising influence, Lucerne formed an allience neighbouring towns, which was later joined by Zurich, Bug and Bern to form the 'eternal Swiss confederacy' in 1332. After beating off the Habsburg rule, Lucerne expanded greatly, commercially and economically. The 16th century saw the Protestand reformation across the confederacy, Lucerne remained catholic, winning the battle at Kappel in 1531. However after the Protestant defeat of the Catholics in 1712, it's influence in the Confederacy was lost, and Protestant cities became dominant. Agriculture always remained the dominant form of economic output, and the industrial revolution wasn't as pronounced till very late. Most recently, the city of Lucerne merged with the neighbouring town of Littau after a referendum, making Lucerne today the 7th largest city in Switzerland.

Language of Lucerne

Although the official language of Lucerne is German, the German spoken in actuality is the local variant of Allemanic Swiss German. It is preferred if you use this language for greetings and general conduct. However, French, English and Italian are also spoken.

Lucerne Customs

In Lucerne it is always better to be dressed in smart, clean clothes. The Swiss people are formal and particular and may look down upon shabbily dressed individuals. This also becomes important when visiting restaurants as dressing well is considered a sign of respect. Refrain from smoking around people or in enclosed places, unless a smoking room is available. Handshakes are used for greeting one another. Also, do not talk loudly in public places, or public transport as this is considered very rude. Tipping is not considered necessary in Switzerland, but you can always round up on your bill and leave a little extra change.

Religion of Lucerne

Christianity is the largest religion in the city, within which the Roman Catholics are the most in number.

Daily Budget for Lucerne

Per day costs in Lucerne for a budget trip can start from CHF 100. These costs include three meals a day, some alcohol, transportation, and entry passes for attractions. Eating in fancy restaurants, shopping, and other small upgrades can almost double that amount per day, taking you to about CHF 180 - 200 for a decently comfortable trip of Lucerne.

Exchanging Money in Lucerne

Exchanging currency in Lucerne is a simple task. Banks all over the city have currency exchange booths, which usually stay open beyond bank hours. These are also available at train station and in Old Town. There are even automatic currency exchange machines in Lucerne. Most ATMs in Lucerne accept foreign cards.

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How to Reach Lucerne

How to Reach Overview

Lucerne is an easy reach via car or train. It, however, doesn't have an airport and you will have to land at Zurich or Berne and then take a train.

How to reach Lucerne by flight

Lucerne does not have an airport. A flight has to be taken to Zurich or Berne, and then a train to reach Lucerne.

How to reach Lucerne by road

Driving to Lucerne is going to make you witness some of the most stunning and picturesque views Switzerland has to offer. The roads are magnificent too, adding to the entire spectacle of driving down. Lucerne is at a distance of about 45 minutes from Zurich, and an hour from Berne and Basel. Renting cars in Zurich is fairly simple. You'll find a lot of options at the airport itself.

How to reach Lucerne by train

The train system in Switzerland is actually quite sophistciated. It covers almost the entire country and the views and sceneries are just breathtaking. Trains from Zurich will take you about 50 minutes to an hour, and an hour and 15 - 20 minutes from Basel and Berne.

How to reach Lucerne by bus

Direct intercity bus services in Switzerland aren't very prominent. For example, to go from Zurich to Lucerne in a bus, you first have to take a train to the outskirts and then take the bus. Train travel is recommended to get to Lucerne.

Local transport in Lucerne

Buses and local train networks are ideal forms of commuting in the city. The entire region is divided into zones and Lucerne City is Zone 10. A day pass for zone 10 will cost CHF 10. The pass will allow you to cover all the attractions of the city. Purchasing of tickets can be done through cash, credit card, or through a phone app called OV ticket. A fine of CHF 90 can be levied if you're found travelling without a ticket or with an invalid ticket.

Lucerne Photos

Lucerne, Switzerland

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FAQs on Lucerne

What is the best time to visit Lucerne?

Winters in Lucerne are a joy to behold. The Alps are in their full glory, and the snowfall and freezing cold temperatures make the trip quite exciting. Hordes of tourists flock to Lucerne during the winters for ski trips. However, prices during this period are high due to Christmas and New Year bookings so it's better to book several months in advance. On the other hand, summers in Lucerne are quite pleasant. This is the other peak season in the city which sees lots and lots of tourists. The Alps ensure that the temperature is still quite chilly. Soaking up the sun while exploring the city, embarking on hiking and biking trips is a fun way to spend the summer in Lucerne. But as is the case with winters, this period sees a great rise in prices, and planning well in advance is advised.
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What are the places near Lucerne?

The top places near to Lucerne are Zurich which is 40 km from Lucerne, Basel which is located 78 km from Lucerne, Geneva which is located 190 km from Lucerne, Lausanne which is located 140 km from Lucerne, Zermatt which is located 122 km from Lucerne

What are the things to do in Lucerne?

The top things to do in Lucerne are Chapel Bridge (Kapellbruecke), Old Town, Spreuerbruecke, Lowendenkmal, Swiss Transport Museum (Verkehrshaus der Schweiz), Rosengart Collection. You can see all the places to visit in Lucerne here

What is the best way to reach Lucerne?

Lucerne is an easy reach via car or train. It, however, doesn't have an airport and you will have to land at Zurich or Berne and then take a train.
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What is the local food in Lucerne?

The local cuisine in Lucerne concentrates on the importance of homegrown and fresh foods. As is obvious, Swiss food is going to be loaded with cheese. The Luzerner Ch├┤gelipastete is a local delicacy and you should also try the Pear Bread. Some popular local restaurants include Taube, and Dean and David, which is known great fresh food and isn't heavy on the wallet.
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