’22 Sep: Lucerne, Switzerland

Arrival Lucerne And Mt. Pilatus

Heading home from the train station this is the Chapel Bridge (Kapellbrücke) and the Jesuit Church (Jesuitenkirche) on the right.

I got off from Basel early enough, dropped my bag at the hotel, scurried back to Tourist Information at the train station to arrange my quick-like-a-bunny journey up to Mt. Pilatus. And good thing too considering the weather forecast which was for endless thick clouds and rain.

It’s fun, and you can go in either direction. I went city tram, small gondola, large gondola, the world’s steepest cogwheel railway, and then the city train back to Lucerne. You can also ride a boat for the last leg as pictured above.

On the way up, I could see below me that there were dozens of hiking trails most populated by a hearty few. The trails varied in levels of grooming, some super-steep and some more switchbacks. There were a few resting spots along the way such as this place.

From the gondola.

At the top (but not the tippy-top), from the restaurant window.

Lake Lucerne

This is one ascent, and there was one even longer and steeper to get even higher.

That’s the cogwheel train, the steepest cogwheel in the world with a maximum gradient of 48%, average 35%, and starts at 6,800 feet.

Here we are where the cogwheel train, the SBB train, and the boats all meet.

One of the many such stands around the Railway Station and the Old Town.

See those iron-railed balconies above the green awning? One of those is mine. My room is the size and shape of a hallway but I’ve got an awesome balcony overlooking the river Reuss that half a block away feeds directly into Lake Lucerne!

This is one of the views when I step out on my balcony.

Gotta get a fountain in on the first day.

World Band Festival

I saw these banners on the first day and thought I should check it out. But I didn’t. And then as I was heading out for the day I ran across this – A Band Festival. Outside there were concert bands and brass bands and ensemble bands. There was also a competition inside for which paid tickets were required. Lucerne btw flies the blue and white flags.

From inside the festival meet-and-greet looking out on one of the stages.

Me in a tympani. It hasn’t been cold but it has been wet and my raincoat and an umbrella has been working well.

There were three stages and they all took turns playing and it was AWEsome. These three would play for an hour or so and then another three bands would take their place.

It was awesome, it was also raining. The crowd did its best to snuggle up under the canopy.

These two were playing soprano trumpets in the brass band. They were so good, the conductor was adorable, and they chose excellent pieces for the venue. Three cheers from me!

It hasn’t run since I got here.

The gate from the original train station, the train station that has now been built three times.

It was fun to run across these pillars of flowers around town.

And the lovely folks at the excellent Visitors’ Information Center.

Another interesting museum full of a ton of some of my favorite things. “Experience some unforgettable encounters with wonderful works of art. Enjoy works by Pablo Picasso, Paul Klee and another 23 artists from the age of Impressionism and Classic Modernism.”

City Walls And City Scenes

Good Morning!

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Oh! the gold one finds in the Church of St. Leodegar (St. Leodegar im Hof or Hofkirche St. Leodegar)..

..and the view from the front steps of the church. I see those flags, I think Red Cross. Here’s something I copied from the internet:
“The design of the Red Cross originated from the First Geneva Convention in 1864. The symbol represents an inverted Swiss flag as a tribute to Henry Dunant, the Swiss founder of the International Committee of the Red Cross.”

Musegg Wall and its nine towers. I did the climb! It was a cool, sunless day and the challenge not so great, not like those citadels in Corsica!

A view from the walk up to the city walls.

Just another lovely view.

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Pictured below is a top-ranked attraction in Lucerne, the Bourbaki Panorama set up in the building on the right, a circular painting depicting a military scene from the Franco-Prussian war. It’s a horrors-and-heroics-of-war story that you can read about at length. I spent more time than I expected shuffling along around the work and was totally absorbed.

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Another equally beloved site is the Lion Memorial (Löwendenkmal). It’s a war memorial too.

The picture above, entrance to the Lion Memorial, is symbolic for me. The bike represents getting around without cars. The WC is a public toilet, clean and free. The trash can, yes, in the tourist areas you’ll find one every block and the streets and sidewalks are as tidy as you’d expect. The trees are nice too. I’ve got this long story about the dad and the raisin box..too long to tell but I hope I remember it.

The lion is huge and best loved for his anguished expression.

The setting was lovely.

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You see a lot of this..

..and this in the Lucerne Old Town.

See that loaf of bread, SO delicious. I tear off chunks and dip it in morning coffee. Ahhh. Those savory pastries are good too. The best source of quick, tasty, and (relatively speaking) not killer expensive food is the big SBB train stations. Yes. There are sandwiches I like, a nice selection of salads, pizza by the slice, all sorts of baked goods, even branded grocery stores for fresh fruit and veg (and plain yogurt!) all available at the train station and ready to go.

My review: I opened the box, had a small hassle getting them on, but once on, they were Perfect, and within a few days they had loosened up so that I could get them on easily enough. It’s a few weeks now with many miles on these shoes, and I couldn’t be happier. I should get another pair!

I’ve been traveling, through hot days (no problem keeping cool), wet days (dried amazingly fast and No Slipping!), cold days (I wore thin wool socks). Wonderful!

I usually wear a 7 in full sizes so I got the 7.5. The heel/ankle strap stays on, the toe box is nice and wide, and the shoe feels snug and safe. Thumbs up KEEN Whisper.

Cruising Around Lake Lucerne

Feels good!

A cruise around Lake Lucerne is Included in my Swiss Travel Pass, so I decided sure why not and anyway all the mountain activities are socked in clouds and rain.

It’s a paddle wheeler with the wheels enclosed on the sides

And we’re off.

You’ll see the colors change as we get an occasional hole in the clouds.

We would hug the shore when a stop was coming up, and there were many stops.

Here’s a nice one.

Check out that tunnel/bridge. I think people were walking on the top.

Captain on the fly bridge.

The turn-around. Oh the blue. We only get it where there’s light.

Really gorgeous, and surprising!

I think this might be a close up of the village above?

It was a lovely day, probably a little of what river cruising is like. The round trip took 5.5 hours and I was never bored although I did nod off a time or two. There was a busy restaurant on board and I had quite a satisfying lunch of meat loaf, mashed potatoes, steamed carrots, and a very tasty sauce over the whole thing. I can’t remember what I did after the cruise because I’m writing this 3 days later and I don’t have any more pictures!

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