Lucerne is one of my favorite cities in Switzerland! I spent one day exploring this preserved medieval-style city and have put together this complete guide of 3 Awesome Things To Do in Lucerne to help you plan your trip!
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WHERE IS LUCERNE?
Lucerne is located 53 km south of Zurich. The best way to get to Lucerne from Zurich is by train, which is a short one-hour journey.
HOW TO GET HERE
If you are planning a trip around Switzerland, I highly recommend purchasing the all-in-one Swiss Travel Pass which includes trains, buses, and boats throughout the whole of Switzerland.
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Lake Lucerne – What to do in Lucerne
BEST TIME TO VISIT LUCERNE
The best time to visit Lucerne depends on what you plan to do. I personally prefer the spring and summer months in Switzerland (April – September) when temperatures are warm and the landscapes are vividly green.
However, visiting in winter (December – March) is absolutely magical because the landscapes are completely covered in glistening white snow. Visiting in winter also means you have to opportunity to go skiing in the Swiss Alps.
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3 AWESOME THINGS TO DO IN LUCERNE
Chapel Bridge is the most iconic attraction in Lucerne and the oldest wooden bridge in Switzerland, dating back to the 14th century.
The Chapel Bridge Lucerne stretches 200 meters across the Reuss River and attached to the bridge is an old water tower that served as a dungeon, an archive, and a treasury vault in medieval times.
It’s free to walk over Chapel Bridge and remember to look up to discover the colorful old paintings on the underside of the roof. Definitely add Chapel Bridge to your itinerary as it is one of the best places to visit in Lucerne.
Related Article: Best Winter Destinations In Europe
Chapel Bridge – Lucerne things to do
Chapel Bridge Lucerne
BOAT TRIP ON LAKE LUCERNE
A boat trip on Lake Lucerne is one of the most unforgettable things to do in Lucerne Switzerland.
With the Swiss Travel Pass, you can take a round-trip boat ride on Lake Lucerne which is the best way to see the region at a slow pace!
There are daily departures on Lake Lucerne, usually every hour during the day. Just head down to the ferry terminal and jump on board when a boat arrives and you’ll be asked to show your Swiss Travel Pass.
Lake Lucerne boat trip
Boat trip on Lake Lucerne – What to do in Lucerne
Last but not least on this list of things to do in Lucerne is Mt Rigi, also known as the queen of the mountains, which is a large mountain range in the Lucerne region.
The best way to get to Mt Rigi, using the Swiss Travel Pass, is to take the one-hour boat ride from Lucerne Ferry Terminal and get off at Vitznau.
From here there is a special cog-wheel train that will take you up to the summit of Mount Rigi. This was my favorite part of the adventure as I was able to hang outside the windows of the train to take photos!
Panoramic views await at the summit of Mt Rigi, overlooking three lakes and phenomenal alpine peaks in the distance.
If you want to grab lunch or a beer you can simply pop into a hotel restaurant and most have outdoor terraces with stunning views. Be sure to add Mt. Rigi to your list of things to do in Luzern.
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The summit of Mt. Rigi, Lucerne
The cogwheel train
Sunset from Mount Rigi – Things to do in Lucerne
BEST TOURS IN LUCERNE
If you’ve got a few days up your sleeve to explore this wonderful city, see the list below for some of the best tours in Lucerne that you might like to check out.
BEST PLACES TO STAY IN LUCERNE
Luxury: Lucerne Lake View Apartments
Offering stunning lake views, free wifi, and just walking distance to the center of the city, this 5-star accommodation is hard to beat! Each apartment is fitted with a balcony, fully equipped kitchen, dishwasher, sofa, tv, dining room, washing machine, private bathroom with a bath, fridge and freezer, microwave, and coffee machine. Convinced yet?
Mid Range: Hotel De la Paix
This 3-star hotel is located right in the heart of town, just a 200m walk to the old quarter in Lucerne. Various restaurants, cafes, bars, and shops are all located in the vicinity of Hotel De la Paix. There are single, double, and triple rooms available and breakfast is included.
Budget: Barabas Hostel
I personally stayed at the Barabas Hostel in Lucerne City, located just ten minutes walk from the Lucerne Train Station. The Barabas Hostel is one of the coolest and most unique hostels I have stayed in, the reason being that it was once an old prison. The dorms and private rooms are the same rooms where prison inmates used to sleep back in the day (much cleaner and refurbished of course) and it gives you a real sense of what it would be like to be a prisoner. A buffet breakfast is also included with the room and the staff are overly helpful with their knowledge of the best things to do in Luzern.
FOR ALL OTHER PLACES TO STAY IN LUZERN, SEARCH ON AGODA OR SEARCH ON BOOKING.COM
THINGS TO KNOW BEFORE YOU GO
The currency in Switzerland is Swiss Francs (CHF) and the exchange rate is approximately $1 USD = $1 CHF.
Purchasing a sim card in Switzerland is very simple. You can do this at the airport on arrival or find a phone store close to your accommodation. For approximately $40 USD, you can get a local sim card that comes with 10GB of data.
MORE SWITZERLAND TRAVEL GUIDES
If you are planning a holiday in Switzerland, be sure to check out my other travel guides below that you might find useful while putting together your itinerary:
BEST SWITZERLAND TOURS
LONELY PLANET SWITZERLAND
One of the best books to take on your trip is the Lonely Planet Switzerland Guide.
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I hope you enjoyed reading this article and if you have any questions about Lucerne things to do, please drop me a comment below this post and I’ll get back to you as soon as I can.