Jan 8, 2019
Last summer I visited Vaduz, the capital town of the Principality of Liechtenstein. It’s located along the Rhine River in the Alps and has a bit more than 5,500 residents. But despite being small, it has many great things to offer. So now comes the question: What to see in Vaduz?
This town was meant to be just a short stop on my way to Lucerne so I spent only a few hours exploring, however, if you come to Vaduz for a whole day, you still have many things to see next time. What I noticed before even arriving in there were the car plates. Liechtenstein is the only European country with black car plates.
After crossing the river dividing Switzerland and the principality a new world appeared. Vaduz is probably one of the quietest and cleanest capitals in the world. And moreover, surrounded by high mountains, it offers the visitors great views.
Located in the heart of Vaduz, just underneath the Vaduz Castle, is the street Städtle. This is probably the place where you will spend most of your time. Walking along this pedestrian zone, you can find many cafés, restaurants, museums and much more. It really does have everything and is also filled with modern sculptures, which the town seems to love. On the north side is the Rathaus (Vaduz townhall) and a square with few governmental buildings closes it on the south.
The city of Vaduz offers numerous museums for every taste. All of them located on Städtle, just within a few steps from each other. Coming towards the Peter-Kaiser Platz is the Liechtenstein Museum of Fine Arts (Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein) holding modern art and National Museum (Landesmuseum Liechtenstein) in the picture below will give you an intriguing insight into the cultural history of this small, but rich country.
The square, renovated in 2008, now perfectly shows the contrast between new and old. Coming from the Städtle street, you will first meet very modern-looking building of the Liechtenstein Landtag (Liechtenstein’s Parliament). The building of Liechtenstein National Archives on the right closes the square. Actually, there is not much to do here if you don’t really want to sit in a tiny park and relax. So let’s move on closer to the Cathedral of St. Florin.
Josef Gabriel von Rheinberger
Slowly walking off the Square, we are meeting a statue of Josef Gabriel von Rheinberger, who was an organist and composer born in Vaduz back in 1839.
Cathedral of St. Florin
Vaduz Cathedral, or Cathedral of St. Florin, is a neo-Gothic church given the status of cathedral in a bit more than 20 years ago. It is surrounded by a nice garden, which makes a border between the town centre and a residential part.
I also recommend walking a bit through a few streets nearby to see typical colourful houses and to get a nice insight into living there.
Before coming up the hill, closer to Vaduz Castle, you should definitely take a walk through a street called Mitteldorf to see how Vaduz once looked. Located in a charming quarter of traditional houses and rose-strewn gardens, it lets you immerse in the late medieval ages.
Overlooking the town is the Vaduz Castle. It’s probably the most attractive sight in the town, you can see it from a distance when approaching. A short walk of about 20 minutes up a hill will lead you straight from the centre to the official residence of the Prince of Liechtenstein. The castle, built in the 12th century, gave its name to the town. Since 1938, it has been the primary residence of the princely family, so it has not been open to the public.
Also, take your time to enjoy breath-taking, almost royal panoramic views of Vaduz.
I can only recommend taking a bus number 21 to Triesenberg, which is a municipality including 8 villages. Located on a mountain, it offers great views on the south part of Liechtenstein, the Rhine River, and Switzerland. The village is full of typical wooden Alpine houses and walking is convenient. The bus ticket is around 3 CHF.
You can order a coffee and a cake in Restaurant Kainer and enjoy these stunning views.
Any traveller shouldn’t forget to walk on the Alte Rheinbrücke wooden bridge before leaving the principality. It connects Liechtenstein with Switzerland and the country border splits this bridge right in the half. Intended for pedestrians and non-engine vehicles only, you will meet many bike riders cycling from country to country and if you are really lucky, you can meet a horse too!
Aforementioned time and price are only approximate.
Our today’s Vaduz tour has come to its end. I hope this article made you think about visiting this small Alpine country and explore its beauty even beyond the capital.
Or have you been to Liechtenstein yet? If so, what did you like the most? Let me know in the comment section down below.
Also, check out my Instagram profile for more photos.