Swiss Bliss Day 10 (Part 1)

Lucerne or Luzern (in German) is a very small city that attracts plenty of visitors. Most of them will use Lucerne as a base to visit the mountains of Mt Rigi or even Mt Pilatus. But that doesn’t detract the value of Lucerne as a place to visit on its own. So after our ‘mountain’ excursion yesterday, it was time to give the city of Lucerne a trip that it deserved.

Lucerne landmark - Chapel Bridge

Lucerne landmark – Chapel Bridge

“Nothing says more about Lucerne than the famous Käpellbrücke or Chapel Bridge.”

“We need to wake up early for it.” I said.

“We saw it last night.” came the reply. True, but there’s a distinct difference between the sunset/evening view and the morning view.

It was only 8am in the morning and that was the best time, there weren’t that many tourists around and we had the place all to ourselves.

A closer view of the Chapel Bridge

A closer view of the Chapel Bridge

It was at the tail end of summer when we visited Lucerne, but the flowers were still blooming. I rather appreciated the fact that they transplanted the flowers onto the bridge, giving it a fresh and colourful look to a drab structure.

Flowers galore!

Flowers galore!

We had our fair share of visiting areas where tourism is the key economical factor and found that the town-planners really got their minds together towards beautifying the place. Our own town-planners back home better get their act together. Small touches here and there is enough to have tourists flocking into town and generating some much needed moolah for the locals.

Tip: Start the day early in Lucerne, plenty of things to see and do.

“It says here that is was burnt down in 1993.”

“True. And we could still see signs of it.”

Burnt sections

Burnt sections

Unburnt section

Unburnt section

It’s a real pity since those drawings were dated back to the 12th century and now it’s gone forever.

If you’re able bodied and have the stamina, Lucerne is basically a very walkable city. Most of the sights are located near to each other. Our next stop was the Bourbaki Panorama. It’s not really a must-do on our bucket list but since we’ve bought the Swiss Pass, entrance to this is free. Not to mention the bus we took to the area.

As with the Chapel Bridge, we were the early birds at the Bourbaki Panorama. I find it a good habit to start the day early during travels, so that we can squeeze in much more for the whole day. Not to mention tourist-free photographs. If you start off around 10am, be ready to weather the tourist storm, as flocks of them would arrive on tour buses.

The Bourbaki Panorama is basically what its name says, a panoramic drawing done by a couple of artists headed by Edouard Castres. It is a token of thanks by the French government to the Swiss Federation for the sheltering of wounded soldiers. Swiss people went above and beyond to take care of these soldiers. Be sure to pay attention to the multimedia on the second floor before wandering up to the Panorama on the top floor.

Edouard Castres drew himself into the Panorama

Edouard Castres drew himself into the Panorama

The Bourbaki Panorama is made much more life like with the addition of 3D effects. As shown below.

Noticed the extended scene?

Noticed the extended scene?

The Bourbaki Panorama (click to enlarge)

The Bourbaki Panorama (click to enlarge)

“This was what I meant with walkable distance.”

“What?”

“Just down this road is the Löwendenkmal.”

“The what?”

“Löwendenkmal.”

Löwendenkmal

Löwendenkmal

Löwendenkmal or the Lion Monument was made famous by Mark Twain, since he noted it as ‘the most mournful and moving piece of stone in the world’. He said it, not me. It is a commemorative monument made to honour the Swiss Guards massacred in the French Revolution.

There is actually a mortal wound to the lion made by a broken spear

This is the closest that you can get to the monument as it lies overlooking a small pond. So no touching of the monument at all, no hugging, no weird selfies. Which is good in a sense, it allows the rest of us to get a nice picture of this touching scene of the wounded lion.

(to be continued)

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