Unveiling the myths of Luxembourg

Category : Travelguide

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Published on 14/09/2015, by Luxembourg for Tourism

“Luxembourg, where is it? In Germany right? Or is it in Belgium?” 
“Luxembourg is not a country you would think of visiting.”
“Luxembourg, Liechtenstein, which one do you mean?”

Unfortunately, many similar reactions and myths about Luxembourg travel around the world. Most people have already a hard time locating Luxembourg and don’t always know much about the Grand-Duchy. A mysterious country, a true hidden gem waiting to be explored.

Let’s unveil some of the most common myths or misunderstandings about Luxembourg:

1. “Luxembourg City is boring and there are only old people or business men.”

Nope. Luxembourg’s capital is a very young, vibrant and cosmopolitan city with a great bustling nightlife and amazing events all over the year.  After work, people flock out to the lively bars and pubs of the city for an extended “happy hour”. Especially when the sun comes out, streets around the Grand-Ducal Palace are packed with locals enjoying a glass or two. It can be very interesting to just sit down and listen to the melody of the different languages spoken around you  or watch youngsters from all over the world meeting up in the city center. There are people of every age and every culture, people that are coming for leisure and businessmen. They all meet in Luxembourg and enjoy our beautiful country full of contrasts.

2. “Besides Luxembourg City, there is nothing else to do in this tiny country.”

The Grand-Duchy has a tremendous offer when it comes to outdoor and cultural activities, especially outside Luxembourg City. There are countless impressive hiking trails and biking tracks for nature lovers. A rich and diverse culture, fairytale castles and many entertaining events. Numerous excellent local products to taste, fun activities for adventure seekers and the whole family and so much more. It may be a small country, but the offer is huge.

3. “Luxembourg looks like Germany.”

Where in Germany do you find a city built on different levels, offering breathtaking views on the green parks divided by a small river and surrounded by casemates? A city that combines modern buildings of famous architects with well-preserved medieval ramparts and fortifications that are part of the UNESCO world heritage list. Let´s address the diversity of the different regions on a very small territory: As one region offers unspoiled nature, the neighbouring region attracts hikers because of its unique rock formations. Moving on to Luxembourg’s wineland that produces outstanding white wines and not to mention a region marked by its glorious industrial past. A small country, but yet so different from other European countries.

4. “The official language is French.”

Some people may think that french is the official language. This is only partly true because Luxembourg has three official languages. Luxembourgish, yes this is a language, remains our national language; French and German being our administrative languages. Besides, you will get along easily with English as it is widely spoken. Nevertheless, depending on where you are in the country, one or the other language may be more commonly used.

5. “It is difficult to get to Luxembourg.”

Luxembourg is strategically located in the heart of Europe which makes it very easy to get to. Luxembourg is linked to the neighbouring countries by a first-class road network; numerous flights from all over Europe are landing at the international airport located only 10 minutes from the center of Luxembourg City; within the city center, the train station offers excellent rail connections such as the TGV.

6. “It's expensive to travel around Luxembourg.”

The Luxembourg Card is an excellent way to travel on a budget. For only 68€, up to 5 people can travel for 3 days on all busses and trains throughout the country and visit more than 60 museums and attractions - actually, this covers most attractions of the country.You can use the Card with your family members or with some friends and it doesn’t have to be for 3 consecutive days. There are different options: from 1-Day to 3-Day Cards, individual or Family Cards... If you need to take the bus from/to the airport, don’t worry, the transfer is included.

If you are staying in Luxembourg City and you don’t like to walk, a very affordable way to tour around is to rent a Vel’Oh. Just be aware that the city can be hilly.

On top of this, numerous Festivals, Concerts or other great events throughout the year are completely free. Besides the different activities, people often think that eating out in Luxembourg is incredibly expensive, but the fact is that we have reasonable prices for excellent quality and huge portions.

7. “Luxembourg lost its typical traditions and culture because of the many expats.”

In some ways the luxemburgish melting pot has changed a little the image of customs and traditions.  New foreign festive and folkloristic practices have appeared over the years and other customs once cultivated by our ancestors are slowly losing their original significance- just like everywhere in the world. Nevertheless, numerous significant religious and everyday practices are still nurtured by most local people.

Here are a few examples of typical traditions: Dräikinneksdag (Epiphany), Liichtmëssdag (Glowing lanterns), Oxen dances and tie stumps during Carnival, Buergsonndeg (Burn the Cross), Klibberen (roughly: going rattling) on Easter, Émaischen (pottery fair), Meekränz (May wreaths), Geenzefest (gorse festival) on Whit Monday, Sprangpressessioun (Dancing procession in Echternach), Léiffrawëschdag (harvest Festival) in the Moselle region, and many more!

I’m sure that after visiting Luxembourg, you wouldn’t agree with these myths or misunderstandings anymore.
What are you waiting for to visit the unexpected Luxembourg and check it by yourself?