Out of the train station, the first hint of Lucerne's beauty is the sight of Lake Lucerne with the snowy Alps blurred on the horizon. The city centre, which dates back from medieval times, is at the other side of the lake and the best way to get there is by walking along the Kapellbrücke, a 14th century wooden bridge (though is was recently reconstructed after a fire). The Kapellbrücke has a wooden roof decorated with paintings depicting scenes from Swiss history and mythology. A bit further, there is a another wooden bridge, the Spreuerbrücke, very similar to the Kapellbrücke. The wooden bridges over the lake are probably the most emblematic sight of Lucerne and if you ever visit and do only one thing, do stroll along these bridges.
It goes without saying that Lucerne is an expensive city - much like everything in Switzerland - but just like the best things in life are free, Lucerne can also be enjoyed for free. The small city centre is a maze of cobbled streets and alleys with colourful houses everywhere. One of the things I liked more about Lucerne, besides the breathtaking views of the Alps covered in snow, were the frescoes that adorned most façades. Not only were houses painted in many different colours but they were often also embellished with paintings of trees and leaves, Swiss flags and shields, and medieval peasants and knights. It was like being in an open-air art museum. Or a museum of historical street art.
And this is how I spent a winter day in Lucerne. The city has much more to offer but for a first introduction to the charms of Lucerne we steered clear of the museums and distant interesting sites. Maybe next time!
Have a lovely Wednesday!