|Lucerne: Chapel Bridge
For the sake of sanity and brevity, I’m going to divide this post into discrete, digestible parts. Here we have Part 1: Lucerne, or Luzern, as the city is also otherwise known.
If you have ever found yourself in the middle of a dream, in an idyllic town that borders a lake, the water crystal clear, swans dotting the waterfront, charming sloped and steepled rooftops…you were probably in Lucerne. One dead giveaway is the iconic Chapel Bridge, above, which I have caught at a bad angle under bad lighting, so you miss the flow of red flowers that run down its flank. As soon as you emerge from the train station, you can traverse this iconic structure and settle into any of a number of quaint restaurants that line the water. There, you can sip, eat, and otherwise take full advantage of Swiss hospitality.
It rained almost the entire time. The moment the rain stopped, I took pictures, but every picture looks as if it were taken on a different day.
What there is to do:
Lucerne is clearly a city meant for the wanderer at heart. However, if you don’t want to lounge, or wander elegant streets, or savor rich food, there is also the Sammlung Rosengart Museum, which houses a staggering private collection of modern art, mainly by Picasso. I would include pictures, but they were not allowed, and you’ll just have to take my word for it. Just keep in mind, however, Lucerne sleeps early. All shops close by 6:30pm, and the museum closes around 5:30, so if there is a store you want to visit, get there early, it won’t always be there.
Alternately, you can take a tour of the lake by boat. While I was there, there were two options: 1 hour, or 3 hours. My ideal time: 2 hours. Nothing’s perfect. However, if you remain in the city awhile, and you should, you may decide to stay in one of the charming hotels right by the water, where I saw people fishing, rowing, and enjoying life.
To and From:
My home base was Zurich. Lucerne is a one hour train ride away. Trains generally come every half an hour, because the Swiss don’t just make excellent timepieces, they use them as well.
I don’t often include too many pictures, but I wanted to convey a sense of the place. That feeling you get from a city, that visceral immediate impression it makes on your memory through your eyes. It’s the impression that stays with you, like an aftertaste, but in a good way.