I lived 8 years in Paris which is not far from here but never had cause to come here. Now, flying back home via Iceland finally provided an occasion to visit Luxembourg which is, like Liechtenstein, small, lovely, charming and filthy rich with foreign bank deposits hiding from the tax ogre in their respective countries of origin.
|Atlapedia CIA Country Reports lu Traveldocs luxemb|
I got here very early by the night train from Liechtenstein and found a room at the Carlton Hotel close to the train station for 30$US which is very cheap for Europe.
The weather was great and I spent the whole day exploring the city on foot. Here is the Place de Paris on Avenue de la Liberté.
The Banque et Caisse d'Epargne de l'Etat: BCEE (State Savings Bank), on Avenue de la Liberté which is one of the two principal north-south thoroughfares, the other one being Avenue de la Gare..
The Banque et Caisse d'Epargne de l'Etat: BCEE across the Adolphe Bridge over the Petrusse River. The Petrusse and Azette rivers have cut deep valleys that created an easily defensible site for a powerful fortress built by Sigefroi, count of the Ardennes, in 963.
Constitution Square in the foreground with the Cathedral of Our Lady and government buildings in the background behind which stood Sigefroi's stronghold. The fortified city built around it was fought over by the Burgundians, the Spanish, the French, the Austrians and the Prussians who all appreciated the strategic value of its location.
In the background, the Viaduc over the Petrusse River.
Luxembourg was besieged, devastated and rebuilt more than 20 times in 400 years. It became the strongest fortress in Europe earning the name "Gibraltar of the north".
In the 19th century, the Grand Duchy got smart, declared itself neutral and blew up its fortifications to put an end the strategic role the city had held in European power politics.
From then on, it concentrated its efforts on getting rich, first by exploiting its iron mines and now by exploiting international tax avoidance. They did not do badly as you can see from this lovely Clairefontaine Square.
Looking west from the corniche towards the railway bridge over the Alzette River.
Below on the left,the Ducal Palace and on the right, the train station.
One day was enough to see the sights and to buy a one way ticket to Boston via Iceland for the next day. It was mid september, the price had come down from the high season peak but it was still high at 580 $US.