While I was in Luxembourg I decided to take a day trip out to Vianden. Luxembourg City is such a small place, so I knew that I would probably run out of things to do while I was there. Taking a day trip out to a different town seemed like a great thing to do.
Vianden is a town close to the German border and is home to the most beautiful castle. When I first saw photos of the castle, I thought it looked very much like Hogwarts which is partly why I wanted to visit it so much. I did a bit of research online and it seemed like it was easy enough to get to and worth the journey.
Getting to Vianden from Luxembourg City
I chose to go to Vianden on the Monday, as I knew that the public transport would be running better than it would at the weekend. Getting there from Luxembourg City was really simple. I just had to take a train from Luxembourg City railway station to Ettelbruck and then from there, get on a bus to Vianden. The train station was a twenty minute walk away from my hostel. All public transport is covered by the Visit Luxembourg card, so it didn’t cost me a cent. It took around twenty minutes to half an hour on the train and then another half hour on the bus. The bus stop to Vianden was really easy to find and was right outside the train station. If you need to check any train times, you can use Trainline.eu whilst abroad.
The bus dropped me off right next to the most beautiful river in Vianden. Everything was so picturesque and quiet. There were hardly any people around, tourists or locals. I could see where the castle was on the hill but the first thing I wanted to do was go on the chairlift. I wasn’t sure how the weather was going to be as there were thunderstorms predicted all week. So, I thought it was best to do the chairlift first, while the sun was shining.
The chairlift looked so wobbly and unsafe, but I was dying to see what was at the top of the hill. This is actually the only chairlift in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg and allows you to get from an altitude of 230 to 440 m and to enjoy a gorgeous panoramic view over Vianden. After wandering around for a while, I found the entrance to the chair lift. Again, there was nobody around. I got on for free with my Visit Luxembourg card and started my descent up the hill. The ride lasts just a couple of minutes. If you don’t have a Visit Luxembourg card, you can pay 3,80€ for a single ticket or 4,50€ for a return.
The views from the chairlift were just stunning. Once you get up there, there isn’t much to do. There’s just a restaurant/cafe and some toilets. I stopped at the cafe for a Sprite while I admired the views. There were quite a few people up there who were doing the same thing. The journey back down the hill was just as good as the way up and it didn’t feel unsafe at all!
Getting to Vianden Castle
Once I was back down at the bottom of the hill, I started to walk up towards the castle. There was just one road leading up to the castle and again, this was really quiet. There were not a lot of people about. Considering it was such a nice day, I thought there would have been a lot more tourists about. It was probably a twenty minute walk up to the castle, however I stopped a lot to take photos. There were so many lovely little buildings, Luxembourg really is beautiful.
Vianden Castle is also a part of the Visit Luxembourg card so I didn’t have to pay for entry. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find where I could pay for an audio guide and all of the information inside the castle was in either French or German. Although I didn’t really understand what was going on, I enjoyed exploring the castle.
Vianden Castle is one of the largest fortified castles west of the Rhine. It was constructed between the 11th and 14th Centuries and was built in a Romanesque style. The castle overlooks the River Our and was home to the powerful Counts of Vianden until the 15th century. Since the castle was transferred into state ownership in 1977, it has been restored to its former glory. It now welcomes thousands of visitors per year from across the world. It comes as no surprise that it’s so popular, really. The castle looks like something out of a fairytale!
Like I said earlier on, Vianden Castle really reminds me of Hogwarts. The part gothic architecture is just stunning. I especially loved the arched windows in the Byzantine Gallery. I spent a good hour or so wandering around the building and taking everything in. Even though nothing was in English and I didn’t have an audio guide, I still enjoyed my visit. I would definitely recommend a trip out to Vianden Castle if you are in Luxembourg or even nearby in Germany. It’s such a beautiful castle and there’s so much history to it. Luckily, I’d read up on it before I went.
The journey back to Luxembourg City didn’t go as smoothly as the journey out. I somehow managed to get on the wrong train at Ettelbruck and didn’t realise until I was almost in Belgium. I’d managed to get the train to Gouvy instead of Luxembourg City, so I ended up spending an hour sat at a train station in Belgium waiting for a train to take me back to the right country. I have been known to get on the wrong trains/buses but I’ve never ended up in the wrong country before, oops!
Have you ever been to Vianden?