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Fun by a fairy-tale lake

This wonderful Swiss city can feel like a fairy tale. Mark Twain and Queen Victoria were fans of Lucerne holidays, and it’s easy to see why. Set in a German-speaking part of Central Switzerland, Lucerne has an idyllic setting on the edge of a lake fringed by snowy peaks. In town, medieval towers, ancient walls, a lakeside promenade and sunny squares make exploring a joy, while covered wooden bridges stretch across the Reuss river, offering great views of the town.

Museums take in transport, chocolate, art, glaciers and Richard Wagner (another famous fan), while live music, modern art and a wild winter festival raise the pulse. The local food is as hearty as the hills that surround the city, and there are plenty of great international options. For a taste of the high Alps, nearby Mount Pilatus towers above Lake Lucerne – take a boat to join the mountain railway that climbs to the summit.

Your Lucerne questions, answered

Lake Lucerne’s bright blue water is magical on a sunny day. The colour is believed to result from the clean, mineral-packed glacial run-off that feeds the lake.
Temperatures in Lucerne often dip below freezing in winter, when snow is common in town – and definitely in the mountains. However, summers are generally pleasantly warm.
Lucerne’s famous Lion monument is 10-metre-long statue erected to honour the 600 Swiss Guards who died defending Paris’s Tuileries Palace during the French Revolution.

Best things to do in Lucerne

Tour the Verkehrshaus

Switzerland’s most popular museum contains planes, trains, boats, rockets, cars and a massive map of Switzerland, as well as a chocolate-themed ride and a planetarium.

Cross the Kapellbrucke

This charming footbridge over the Reuss is the oldest wooden covered bridge in Europe. You can see paintings and a water tower, or just take in the river views.

Peer at Picasso

The grand Sammlung Rosengart museum features the collection of an art dealer friend of Picasso, and includes works by the great man and others, plus photos from his life.