Royally gorgeous Luxembourg

Castles, fortifications and quite possibly the most Michelin Stars per square mile than anywhere else in the world, gorgeous Luxembourg is a city break that shouldn’t be overlooked for its more obvious European neighbours writes Emma Deighan.

Here’s why: It’s picture perfect with architecture that will never fail to impress, boasts a majority population that hails outside of its borders and is home of Radio Luxembourg – remember that?

What’s more is, it’s the only sovereign Grand Duchy in the world which can only mean palaces and regal sightings, it’s the safest capital in the world, flaunts a patchwork quilt of varying yet beautiful landscapes and it’s all set within a landmass smaller than our very own county Antrim.

Chateau de Vianden

Chateau de Vianden

See

In one day you can easily wander between architectural centuries in this modern city where old meets new in an effortless yet complementary manner.

The fortified city centre is where the craic is. Palace of the Grand Duke where young guards practice old style patrol is something to behold while Cathedrale Notre Dame will inspire with its contrasting exterior and interior – rich on the outside, modest on the in.

The Palace

The Palace

Check out the Grand Old Duke in Guillame Square where the markets feature every Saturday and offer a real continental atmosphere.

Casemates Du Bock is the old part of Luxembourg where this majestic archaeological crypt houses the origins of the city. This is the photo shot – the place to Facebook, Tweet or Instagram if you’re one of those social media boasters.

Venture out a bit – and by a bit we don’t mean that far as it’s a very compact place – and you’ll stumble upon the modern district where business and important European matters are housed flanked by modern museums and the structurally phenomenal Philharmonie Luxembourg. Beyond this you can uncover Hansel and Gretel style countryside and famous war memorials namely the American Cemetery where 17 acres of manicured lawn is home to 5076 service members, many of whom lost their lives in the Battle of the Bulge.

Front Night - photo Wade Zimmerman

Eat

The Luxembourgish sure know how to do food. There are 9 Michelin Starred establishments here and we think you should fork out (sorry) to really experience the foodie magic of this place.

http://www.visitluxembourg.com/en/eat-sleep/star-restaurants showcases the list for foodie fanatics.

The latter statement by no means indicates that the non-Michelin eateries are below standard. There’s an obvious talent here to cater and feed in the best manner. Think French and German influences on the menu.

marche Echternach

Sleep

Old, new, luxurious and basic – it’s all there for every price bracket. We loved the bijoux 36-roomed Hotel Simoncini. It’s modern and smack bang in the heart of the city (6 Rue Notre Dame) and with a yummy breakfast to boot. hotelsimoncini.lu

Getting there

Our tip is to travel to Dublin on the Air Coach for Luxair’s direct service. You’ll get a complimentary Crément on board – that’s the Luxembourgish version of Champagne. In fact, you should have a Crément at every opportunity when in Luxembourg. Luxair.lu