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A few photos from Luzern

In July, 2004, it was my first real visit to the European continent, beyond a quick weekend to Paris the year before. I spent three weeks, doing a fair bit of trainspotting, from points north to points south. Those that have read my earlier post, A couple of days at Tehachapi Loop, know how much of an interest I have in railways. And then I stopped in Switzerland, visiting both Zürich and Luzern. Yes, I did a bit of spotting there. But I also took the time out to walk through the streets of Luzern, happily taking photographs. I was quite taken in by the painting designs on the front of many of the buildings.

The fountain at the centre of the Old Town.
Old town centre.
Old town centre.
Strolling along Kapellplatz.
The Luzern town hall clock tower.
Old town centre.
Painted buildings in old town centre.
The old town centre from the river.

Just across the other side of the river (Reuss), is Luzern’s Jesuit Church (Jesuitenkirche). Even though the shell of the building was completed in 1677, the total completion didn’t occur until 1893. A very ornate building, both outside and in. The ceiling of the building is wonderfully painted with stunning artwork. Just below that, is a lovely pipe organ. Sadly, it wasn’t being played during my visit. It is open to the public every day, and entry is free.

The exterior of the church.
Looking towards the pulpit, from the main entrance.
The wonderfully painted artwork on the ceiling.
Another view of the ceiling, and the pipe organ.
A nearby building, taken from just outside the church.

Up on one of the neighbouring hills, is the Chateau Gütsch. This is a castle-like, boutique hotel, which has recently undergone renovation. Due to its location, this hotel has stunning views over the old town and the lake. It did have a cable car, to provide access to the top, but I’m not sure whether this is still in operation.

The Chateau Gütsch, perched up on a hill.

Last, but not least, there’s the Kapellbrücke (Chapel Bridge), and Lake Lucerne (Vierwaldstättersee). The bridge was actually rebuilt, after burning down in 1993. It provides one of the several available crossings over the Reuss, and no visit to Luzern is complete without it.

The Kapellbrücke (Chapel Bridge) in the distance.
Lake Lucerne (Vierwaldstättersee).

Luzern is easily reachable by train from Zürich HB (Zürich’s main station). Direct trains run every half an hour (or better), and take only an hour. Luzern is an easily walkable city, particularly the old town area. For trips further afield, or to just simply take the weight off your feet, there is an excellent local bus network.

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