A weekend in Lucerne

February 11, 2013

Let me share with you a few  pictures of a weekend spent in the lovely city of Lucerne (Central Switzerland).

Snow had fallen lightly  bringing a soft touch on the roof of an ancient wood covered bridge, the Chapel’s Bridge. A strange sight to see this touristic city so quiet. The cold month of January did not attract many visitors but I enjoyed visiting Lucerne in Winter.Lucerne, pont 2

The quai along the Reuss river  was almost deserted but for a few silent seagulls.Lucerne, Reuss

I found this old postcard of the “Devil’s Bridge” over the same river (Reuss) but in the mountains, wild,  still untamed, before it reached the bottom of the valley and the lake of Lucerne. The small lower bridge was built in 1707 for people and their mules  having to cross the mountainous gorge. In 1830, a larger one was constructed for the stagecoaches travelling across the Alps. Finally a third bridge and a new road have been built in 1956. Still a very impressive sight!

File:Postcard First and Second Devils Bridge Uri.jpg

Only a few pedestrians, swans and ducks were to be seen along the lake promenade on this freezing Saturday morning. Some of the large and majestic hotels were closed waiting for better days to welcome tourists.

Lucerne, quai

What a totally different atmosphere in the evening ! There was a concert in the prestigious concert hall  of the KKL (Kultur- und Kongresszentrum Luzern). A real treat. The musicians of The Festival Strings of Lucerne presented two concertos by J.S.Bach as well as a Bohemian Serenade by A. Dvorak and J. Suk.KKL, 1

Beautiful and warm decor, talented musicians, an evening to remember .KKL, 2

I am hoping you will enjoy a part of the “Serenade” by A. Dvorak, “Tempo di Valse”. The musicians are not the ones I heard in Lucerne though but I love their lively interpretation too.


The Carnival fever was already tangible all over the city, here in the main railway station . The celebration was to start on mid-February (right now in fact). Lucerne is well known for his great carnival in my country, as well as Basel.

Lucerne, gare, Carnaval

Lucerne, gare, Carnaval, 2

A few weeks later Carnival has invaded Lucerne. This weekend musicians and the “guggenmusik” groups are playing and dancing in many areas of the city.  Here are two music groups, one in Lucerne, the other in the South of Switzerland.



Saying “good-bye” to Lucerne by night from the roof of the KKL concert hall and to our relatives there who made our stay  so very pleasant. Thanks a lot Yves and Christiane.Lucerne, night



24 Responses to “A weekend in Lucerne”

  1. Sybil said

    Love the image of Chapel’s Bridge. What a lovey structure. Oh and that postcard is wonderful. What a sense of history with such ancient structures.

  2. shoreacres said

    What a lovely post, Isa. I love cities emptied of their tourists, and I love winter, so of course there is much here that appeals.

    Beyond that, your first, second and fourth photos are simply marvelous. They have the feel of paintings – the fourth, especially, seems as though it might have been painted by Manet.

    I didn’t realize that Carnival was celebrated there. I suppose I should have known, as it is quite the thing in places like Venice. We tend to think of “Mardi Gras”, where the primary celebrations are in New Orleans, and associate Carnival with Rio. The photos and music from your part of the world are wonderful!

    I had hoped to post about Courir de Mardi Gras, which is the celebration in rural Louisiana. It’s quite different from Basel, Rio or New Orleans – men on horses chasing a chicken often are involved! I’ll have to be sure to get it researched in time for next year.

    • Many thanks for such lovely comments, Linda. I had to work a bit on those pictures you liked since the day was so grey and lacking of contrasts. Lucerne under the sun is a completely different city. Carnival is supposed to mark the end of Winter here, hence the somewhat frightening masks and loud music – not always “right” – meant to chase away Winter and welcome Spring.

      We are far away from it ! So much snow has been falling over the past days. I will check about your “Courir de Mardi Gras”, sounds great !

  3. montucky said

    The beauty of the city comes through even in winter! Excellent photographs!

  4. Isa, these are all lovely. I like the scenes of the concert hall.vey interesting. The scenes of the wintry outdoors without tourists was a lucky capture for you. Quite appealing to view.That had to have been an enjoyable trip with the wonderful images to capture and the concerts to enjoy. A lovely post.

    • So happy you enjoyed this post, Yvonne. The concert hall was so beautiful, my photos cannot convey the special atmosphere of this place, sitting there and listening to passionate musicians. Wonderful acoustics too. It was a lovely trip indeed, meeting relatives and visiting the city with them.

  5. sonali said

    what a lovely serene place! I’m sure you must be feeling rejuvenated after this trip. I could imagine the music being played at the concert. Mesmerising, in deed. Lucern! Thank you Isa, for the lovely captures. They are beautiful… 🙂

    • Hello sonali, I enjoyed reading your comment, thanks. If you liked Vienna and other old cities in Europe, you would love Lucerne too. It is situated on the bank of the Lake-of-the-four-Cantons surrounded by mountains. A small town that has much to offer to any visitor.

  6. Tammy said

    Such great photos Isa. I really enjoyed them.

  7. Kathy said

    Thank you so much, Isa. You brought back some wonderful memories of when my daughter and I visited Lucerne back in 2007 or 08. Thank you so much. So loved that special town…

  8. Truels said

    Normally I enjoy your photos – this time I enjoyed your music even more 😉
    Dvorak was lovely, and that carneval must have been a great experience: Lovely costumes!

    • That’s nice to hear, Truels, about your liking my music choice. I spent quite a lot of time finding the interprets in both cases, classical and Carnival, that would give you an idea of the music mood in Lucerne. Thank you !

  9. Sartenada said

    Merci pour this partage Isa. Très belles photos que j’aime chacune. J’ai beaucoup apprécié la visite travers vos photos beaucoup. Mes photos préférées sont de la premier et la quatrième photo.

    Belle journée!

  10. Janice said

    What a beautiful city Lucerne is! I have never been, and would probably not choose to go there in the middle of winter! But your photos are lovely. I especially like the first one – your composition is lovely, and it’s a scene that must have changed little over the last couple of centuries. I always assumed Lucerne was French-speaking. Is it part of German-speaking Switzerland?

    • Hello again Janice ! Yes, Lucerne is in the German-speaking part of Switzerland. It is better to visit it in Summertime, the lake surrounded by mountains is so attractive and there are many excursions to be done in the area. Not to speak about all that there is to see in Lucerne. I loved the concert hall where I listened to a very talented British violinist, Daniel Hope. What a treat ! Thank you for your visit.

  11. Great pics would love to see Switzerland someday.

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