The Top 5 Things to Do in Luxembourg City

It’s easy to travel within the European continent because it’s so small and well connected. Virtually every major city is connected via budget flights, train and buses. Luxembourg is one of those destinations that’s centrally located between Belgium, France and Germany but it often doesn’t get much attention. For a long time, I had certainly heard about Luxembourg but had no clue what to expect. What could such a small country, often overlooked by more famous cities nearby like Paris, Brussels or Amsterdam really have to offer? But although Luxembourg is small, there are plenty of great activities to keep you busy for a long weekend. A 3-day trip is a perfect getaway and a great way to explore the city itself as well as a few surrounding areas.

Central Train Station in Luxembourg City

Central Train Station in Luxembourg City

Consider booking a hotel in a central neighborhood in Luxembourg City. This will allow you to walk to many of the attractions and monuments, which are all within close proximity to the center. I stayed at the Hotel Vauban, which was centrally located in the main plaza and also walking distance to the main train station and to many sights of interest. And with rates as low as 70€ per night, it's an affordable private room in an otherwise expensive city. We also recommend HotelsCombined to find the best deal on accommodations. The platform allows you to compare prices from major booking sites to find the lowest rate. View Luxembourg hotels  →

If a hotel isn’t your style and you prefer having more cozy accommodations, try renting an apartment with a site like AirBnB. Prices are generally comparable to budget hotels, especially if you’re willing to get a room in a shared apartment. Plus, if you sign up with AirBnB using this link you will receive a free $25 credit on your first stay.

The currency of Luxembourg is the Euro, so no conversation is required, making it a simple visit. Luxembourg airport is also just 6km outside the city center and the city now even offers free public transportation. Or for simplicity, you can also book a private transfer from the airport to your hotel. Book transfer →

What I quickly found upon my arrival is that Luxembourg is incredibly diverse in its people and landscape. I often wonder when I travel to a place, “What does the average local look like? How do they conduct themselves? Are their customs noticeably different from the places I’ve visited?” I soon found out that the people of Luxembourg are not what I expected. And even more, I was really in awe by the beauty of the city and how its natural landscape formed its history.

Luxembourg City Old Town

Luxembourg City Old Town

Upon arriving in Luxembourg you’ll immediately notice that the population is very diverse. People young and old were dressed in both business suits and casual, yet stylish outfits. You’re very likely to hear a variety of foreign languages spoken as well. The reality is that Luxembourg City has a foreign community of nearly 70%! People from all over Europe and around the world come to live and work in Luxembourg, often taking jobs working for an international bank or the European Union. Luxembourg City actually shares the title of Capital of Europe with just Brussels and Strasbourg, as these three cities house most of the European Union administrative and political offices.

So, once I became accustomed to the dynamic and diversity of the city, my next mission was to discover what to see in Luxembourg. I wanted to explore the culture and offerings in this tiny country with a population of just 530,000 inhabitants.
There are a variety of attractions, but I’ve narrowed down the experiences to the top 5 things to do in Luxembourg.

Visiting the Lower City of Grund was one of my favorite things to do in Luxembourg City

Lower City of Grund in Luxembourg

City Promenade Guided Walking Tour

I’ll be honest. I usually don’t like walking tours much but usually participate because it’s a good way to familiarize yourself with the city at the beginning of a visit. In this case, I was pleasantly surprised and I enjoyed both the tour and guide. Given the international nature of the city, our guide gave the tour in both English and German. She was fantastic and was one of the few local Luxemburger’s I met in the city. I was intrigued by this place from the beginning and her knowledge and general trivia kept my interest for the entire four hours. Book tour →

Luxembourg Written Language

Casemates du Bock

Luxembourg was founded in the 10th century with the construction of a castle on a nearly impenetrable rock at the tip of the current old town. Beneath this former castle (it’s now in ruins) are 17  km of tunnels carved out of the rock that was used for storage and defense of the castle in the middle ages. The tunnels open up on all ends to panoramic views of the city and the valley below. Some of the paths can be a bit claustrophobic but it honestly adds to the experience. Learn more →

Entrance to the Casemates du Bock in Luxembourg

Entrance to the Casemates du Bock

Petrusse Park in the Alzette Valley

I visited the Petrusse Park not as a tourist activity but because it had a picture-perfect jogging path. During our 1-year round-the-world trip, we managed to stay in shape by jogging in nearly every city and country we visited. My travels today are no different and I was happy to find a pathway down to the park just 5 minutes walking from Hotel Vauban, where I stayed in the old town. But don’t think you need to be exercising to visit this place. In fact, I would recommend taking a walk around the park any time of day to experience the views of the opposing cliffs, the far-reaching bridges and the small, yet surprisingly quaint river that is responsible for carving its way through this valley millions of years ago, giving Luxembourg the topology it has today.

Vianden Castle in Northern Luxembourg

One benefit of visiting such a small country is the ease of exploring the cities and regions outside the capital. I took a day trip from Luxembourg City to Vianden to visit the most beautiful castle in Luxembourg. Vianden is just 50 km from Luxembourg City and it’s easily reached via train and bus, taking about 1 hour. You can visit the Luxembourg City Tourist Office for directions and transit schedules. It’s probably worthwhile to buy the Luxembourg Card one-day pass for this journey which only costs 9€. This will save you from buying individual tickets and it actually gets you free entrance to other sites, activities and museums. From Luxembourg City central station you take the train to Ettlebruck Gare, where you change to bus 570 to Vianden. Get off at the Vianden bus station (called “Vianden Gare”) or go one stop farther, which is actually closer to the castle entrance. From the bottom of the hill, the castle is about a 15-minute walk. The entrance to the castle is 6€ (free with the Luxembourg card) but I suggest paying the extra 2€ for the audio guide because there is no signage in English. Round trip, organized tours are also available from Luxembourg City and make the trip much simpler to navigate. Book tour →

What to do in Luxembourg? Visit the Vianden Castle

Vianden Castle in Luxembourg

The Views of Old Town Luxembourg from the Lower Town of Grund

My favorite part of the entire trip was exploring the lower town of Grund, which sits on the Alzette River and is at the base of the former fortress surrounding Luxembourg City old town.  The views along the river are stunning and the views up to the old town are even more spectacular. From the entrance to Grund, you can walk up the hill 15 minutes where you’ll find several viewpoints perched on the side of the cliff with some of the bests views of Luxembourg City you’ll find. Grund is actually only a 10-minute walk from the old town but don’t make the mistake I did! I walked down from the old town to Grund, winding down the roads that switch back and forth. I later discovered there’s an elevator that cut my 15-minute journey down the hill to about 30 seconds. Just follow the elevator signs pointing to Grund.

Lower Grund - one of the Luxembourg Attractions

Elevator to Grund in Luxembourg City

Elevator to Grund

My visit was great and I was surprised by all things to do in Luxembourg City and by how much I enjoyed it. It’s one of the few small cities I actually wish I had more time to explore. Though one aspect of my visit that did disappoint me was how the city shuts down after 7pm. Living in Luxembourg wouldn't be well suited for me. I’m accustomed to big city life in Madrid and the late-night habits of Spanish culture, so I was a bit thrown off when I couldn't find a supermarket or any shops open in the evening. Luckily, there are plenty of restaurants and bars in around that are open into the night to feed your appetite for any food or drink!

Have you ever visited Luxembourg changed? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!

The Luxembourg City Tourism Board sponsored several aspects of my visit but rest assured all opinions are mine. 

52 Comments on “The Top 5 Things to Do in Luxembourg City”

  1. I’ve never, ever been to Luxembourg before, and have never been in a part of France, Germany or Belgium where it’s made sense to pop over for a one or two day trip. It does sound like a pretty interesting country. I’m wondering what the prices are like, in comparison to its neighbouring countries? And the food? THE FOOD?

    1. Auston Matta says:

      Tom – I think it depends on what you buy. They have lower taxes so things like alcohol are pretty cheap. I was surprised to buy a bottle of wine and pay prices similar to that in Spain. I also heard that people in France and Germany near the border often drive to Luxembourg for gas because it’s cheaper with the lower taxes. Things like hotels might be more on average, but not sure. As far as the food, it’s super international. It’s probably actually hard to find an authentic place serving Luxembourgish food as most of what you’ll find is a huge mix of places…italian, chinese, american, mexican, german, etc.

      1. Laura says:

        Hi Auston, found you article very interesting as we are planning to hit Luxemburg during the summer. Any recommendation for sightseen nearby. As we are sooo near to Belgium we were thinking to drive there….the question will be to where? Thanks for sharing these articles. All the best

    2. Jaime Pepito says:

      Luxembourg is what I have always heard from my Dad when he was still alive. He died without having seeing this place. I want to come and have a look at this city and make my dad happy on his behalf. Question 1 – Do we need to apply a visit visa first before coming? 2) Is the place affordable like hotels and restaurants? On ly just 10 days will do me.

  2. Andrew says:

    I’m always curious to see what people say about Luxembourg after a visit. Some people love big cities like New York or London. I guess what I like about living here is the mix of cultures. I’m not a big city person, so luxembourg suits me.
    If you want to try traditional luxembourg food (kniddelen or Judd mat gaardebounen), try 2 places, Um Tiirmschen or Kniddele kinnek in the city.

    1. Auston Matta says:

      Thanks for the food tips Andrew. It didn’t seem so easy to find Luxembourgish food in the city. Like you said, we are big city people but Luxembourg was still nice for a visit. It was a bit strange actually because it felt both big and small all at the same time.

    2. Sven says:

      Kniddel Kinnek does not exist anymore :(…. I also loved it very much…..

  3. Jeff says:

    I am glad you liked your short trip to the Green Heart of Europe. As native Luxembourgers we often seem to forget how magical the city can be. So thanks for reminding us about that, and thanks for the shout out ;)

    Your post does however miss out on the ‘other’ face of the city, which would be the business center and technology hub which is growing rapidly. I hope you had a chance to check out Kirchberg, with its modern architecture, the Philharmony and the Museum of Modern Art.

    1. Auston Matta says:

      Thanks for the comment Jeff. I’m sure I missed plenty while visiting the city. Indeed, I didn’t make it to the more modern part of the city that you described. Can’t do it all in just 3 days! :-)

    2. Renu says:

      Renu here. Just now in Luxembourg, at the City hotel.
      It is a charming city…wish I had more time to spend, promise to come back son.

      1. Auston Matta says:

        Glad you’re enjoying it. It’s a really cute town. My favorite part are the views from lower Grund on the river. Stunning.

  4. April says:

    I love Luxembourg! My husband’s company has an office there and he spent 3 months there. My husband proposed to me in Luxembourg on the Adolphe Bridge.

    1. Auston Matta says:

      Oh wow that’s such a great memory April. It’s a great location for a proposal :-)

  5. We fell in love with Luxembourg when we went a couple of years ago. Such an understated country that really does need to be explored by more people. We were fortunate enough to have a car so went off exploring, having a day in Vianden, a must if you return. With its castle standing to attention onto of the hill and ski-lift climbing high up into the hills for some of the best views of the town below. Some of the local brewed liquors took a bit of getting used to though! :)

    1. Auston Matta says:

      Yes I visited Vianden. It was pretty simple to go to via bus/train. I really liked Luxembourg city a lot!

  6. Rodolfo says:

    My father lives in Luxembourg and I’ve visited him twice but I never explored much of the city. Yes, there’s a huge diversity in the population (most of them are portuguese ahah) but all seemed nice to me.

    1. Auston Matta says:

      Ya it’s true! So many people there and hardly anyone actually from Luxembourg. I guess it’s because of the EU jobs and all the banking. And yes I remember tons of Portuguese people there. Not sure why so many?!

      1. Bruno says:

        There are indeed a lot of Portuguese people here. This explains the why pretty neatly:

        The number of Germans, French and Belgians who cross the border every day to come to their jobs in Luxembourg is even more astonishing. If I’m not mistaken, they make up more than 40% of the total workforce of the country.

        1. Auston Matta says:

          Thanks for sharing Bruno. This is interesting. Always cool to learn about the the immigration history and know why things are the way they are today.

  7. Nelly Weicker says:

    Thank you for your nice description of my country. Please rest assured that we have many many many restaurants around the country who serve great luxembourgish food. You have just visited the city and up North Vianden. You must come back, rent a car and go to East, beautiful Moselle Valley, South, West up North. You would love it and be very much surprised about nature. Best time to visit is after May 15th to September 15. By the way our official language is Luxembourgish and not German. We do learn German and French parallel as of the age of 6. Around 12 we add English.
    Best regards.

    1. Auston Matta says:

      It must be once of those cases where you need to know where to look for the right restaurant. In all honesty, I don’t even know what luxembourgish food is…haha. More similar to French, German or something it’s own? The tour guide mentioned that all 3 languages are official in the country. But I always find it interesting small places like this because it requires the people to learn other languages as part of their schooling. In the states, we’re lucky to learn a few words in a forgeign language. I’m still struggling to learn Spanish after living in Spain for a year and a half. haha. Well thanks again for your comments.

  8. sylv1 says:

    around 10 pc of the population has Portuguese origins. I’m from Arlon, which is in Belgium at the border with Luxembourg. I studied at the university of Luxembourg and got my bachelor degree there. I lived in Bruxelles and London. Now I’m currently living in Amsterdam. I worked 4 years at the Kirchberg in a bank (finance/insurance were around 40 % of the GDP – 10 pc e-commerce)
    And oh yeah I know the center ^^. I never ever felt more secured than in Luxembourg. Yes this is small, yes shops close at 6 and mall at 8 pm. But if you come to Luxembourg, rent a car. So if you need booze and food you got to go to the gaz station (cigarette , alcohol and oil are cheaper). if you’re angry, the “Quick”(fast food at “place d’arme”) close at 4 am or you would go to a club (between 5 and 6 you can eat a burger for a normal price or a pizza in a nightclub ahah) otherwise if you wanna party, most of the clubs required to be well dress (no sneaker, a nice jean and a shirt are REQUIRED almost everywhere) which makes of Luxembourg a night life very “bourgeois”. Clubs accept then less easily the casual fighters,… which makes the city a quite secured city at night. Especially that you don’t wanna mess with the Luxemburg’s police. Otherwise transportation by night exists, they are called “night rider” you need to book via internet to plan your personal transportation (it’s quite cheap). compared to france , belgium , nederland, germany, england and actually many other countries in europe … the salary is actually higher because of less taxation. But real estate is also more expensive, this is why many people living in germany , belgium or france and work in luxembourg.more than 30 % of the population leave the country every evening and in the week end ! otherwise Luxemburger food is very close to the french and german food but they have some special stuff, like de mettwurscht (sausage), Gromperekichelcher , Bouneschlupp (soup), flammkuchen is also very famous but not really from the country… anyway I woud NOT recommend the city for someone who is not interested in law, finance, website, european commision or looking for a super dynamic city where you can party every day but for people of 35 years old, with kids looking for an interesting job, well paid and quiet place -> go to luxembourg .In the end you’re in the middle of west europe :) . by th way living in Luxembourg has also advantages (cheap car insurance; nice social security, good allocations for the kids educations, good deal for mortgages, better unemployment allocation, …)

    1. sylv1 says:

      because of the political and economic advantages many company get registered in Luxembourg. + the European institution + the banks … this required plenty of different nationality (especially for languages) – sorry 15 % of the population speak Portuguese. This is just immigration since 1950 (but this is indeed weird why so much :s IDK – whatever… they are very often nice people … )

    2. Auston Matta says:

      Wow! thanks for your comments. Yes it’s interesting that it has such a strong Portuguese influence. I recall seeing a lot of people speaking it. I have to admit, that for a person that loves nightlife and not planning – it’s not exactly the city for me to live in, but nice to visit and I understand why the residents enjoy living there. Spain is more my style – everything is open until midnight or later. haha. But ya, a really pretty city and so interesting so see all the cultural diversity going on there.

  9. sylv1 says:

    please use the search tool (ctrl+f) and type luxembourg in the search box on these pages :

    those are few examples ;-)

  10. sylv1 says:

    and this is to show why Luxembourg is attractive to work :

    but this is true that I’m not so amazed by the city itself after 27 years ^^

  11. ralph says:

    Any suggestions regarding gay places in Lux? Im going there for a weekend soon.

    1. Auston Matta says:

      There isn’t really much of a gay scene there. The only official gay bar is called Monkey’s Bar. Plenty of gay friendly places but that’s about it.

  12. Tiago says:

    Luxembourg is a very tiny country with no big interest. We call it Europe’s pit hole ahahah

    1. Auston Matta says:

      LOL…well to each their own. I still thought it was a pretty cool place (especially the city) with lots of interesting things.

  13. Hanley says:

    Super, super informative post! Thanks for not only the places to see but recommending how to get there the easiest way! I am leaving to stay near Luxembourg in three weeks and this post was a prefect reference for visiting Luxembourg itself. Great read!

    1. Auston Matta says:

      Hope you enjoy it!

  14. Joan says:

    Thank you for your info, we are stopping off here in our motorhome for a couple of days….you have given us lots to mull over. Super excited, looks a lovely city/ country.

    1. Auston Matta says:

      Awesome. Hope you guys enjoy :-)

  15. Davi L. says:

    Hi. I ‘speak’ from Brazil.
    I’ll spend 2 nights in Luxembourg next month and, after reading your awesome post, two things are certain im my trip: I’ll stay in Hotel Vauban and I’ll visit Grund. Thank you so much for the informations.

    1. Auston Matta says:

      Cool. Hope you enjoy!

  16. Graham Hearns says:

    Hi, I’m planning on spending 2 days in Luxembourg. I will be spending 1 night in Luxembourg. I also plan a half-day trip to Trier while I’m there on the 2nd day. Do you think this will be enough time?

    1. Auston Matta says:

      Sure, it’s small place so you can probably see the highlights in 2 days if you wake up early and plan accordingly.

  17. Davi L. says:

    I just arrived from Luxembourg and followed your suggestions. Stayed in Vauban Hotel. Wonderful location and price. Couldn´t be better. It was raining a lot, but I liked so much and intend to visit the place again.

    1. Auston Matta says:

      Awesome! Too bad about the weather…but sounds like it was still a nice trip :-)

  18. Dani says:

    Curious if you know if the Luxembourg Card is available for purchase at the train station. Thinking of popping over for just a day this coming weekend and the only option I can find online for purchase has it arriving by mail. Don’t want to buy it and have it not arrive in time. Thanks for your top five as they look like a great place to start a day trip!

    1. Auston Matta says:

      Hmmm…no idea but kind of doubtful. You can call the tourism office to confirm though.

  19. Tatjanna says:

    Hi! Thanks for the tips, I’ll be staying in Shellweiler Germany in September and it’s a short pop on over to Luxembourg from there (1.5 hours). Perhaps I’ll make it over!

    1. Auston Matta says:

      Cool! Have a nice time! It’s definitely worth a visit.

  20. Kaskanok says:

    It’s very interesting city. I curious about it should be safe if I go travel alone there?

    1. Auston Matta says:

      Yes, it’s a safe city :-)

  21. Ian Harvey says:

    Lower town of Grund is amazing

  22. SUKHDEEP SINGH says:

    hi everyone

    Sukhdeep here, we are planing to visit luxembourg in june2018. Please suggest me the places of attraction there, so i will plan accordingly. It will be my first visit in europe.

  23. We’ve booked a last minute weekend break to Luxembourg City this weekend so thanks for this post, I knew nothing about it before and this has given us some great ideas of what to do!

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