Luzern has long been Switzerland's tourism capital. Situated on the edge of a lake, with a striking alpine panorama as a backdrop, Luzern was a regular stop on the "Grand Tour" route of Europe during the Romantic era, entertaining visitors such as Mark Twain, Goethe, and Queen Victoria. And with a charming old town, a pair of picture-perfect wooden bridges, a gaggle of fine museums, and its famous weeping lion, there's still enough in Luzern to earn it a place on any Swiss itinerary. Luzern also makes a fine home base for exploring the surrounding region, with wide variety of boat trips, mountain lifts, and other excursions to choose from.
At a Glance
Luzern and Central Switzerland at a Glance
▲▲ Luzern Pretty, pristine lakeside city boasting excellent museums, painted bridges, and a handful of historic sights.
▲▲ Lake Luzern Oddly shaped lake at the very heart of Switzerland, traversed by vintage steamships and surrounded by steep hillsides, gravity-defying villages, and snowy peaks.
▲ Mount Pilatus Craggy mountain hunkering south of Luzern, with sublime views, luge ride, ropes course, and a range of hiking options.
▲ Mount Rigi Long ridge across the lake from (and east of) Luzern, famous for its sunrise vistas and Europe's first cogwheel train.
▲ Fortress Fürigen Underground bunker southeast of Luzern giving you a peek at Switzerland's hidden defense system.