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The last grand duchy

It may be one of the smallest countries in the world, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t a large amount of fun to be had in Luxembourg

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One of the wealthiest cities in the world and the only existing Grand Duchy, Luxembourg is probably best known for its focus on banking, though in reality the city offers much more. From the Old Town to the Grand Ducal Palace, most attractions in the compact city are comfortably within walking distance.

The miniature nation also boasts an embarrassment of riches as far as fine dining is concerned, with a collection of restaurants that have together earned Luxembourg more Michelin stars per square mile than any other country.

Luxembourg’s Old Town is a haven for tranquility, filled with gardens, parks, outdoor cafes and boutiques. Centered around the Place d’Armes – a bustling, tree lined square – the cobbled streets, ancient battlements and historic buildings combine to give the area a unique charm. It is also the cultural heart of the city, housing the National Museum of History and Art and a host of varied art galleries, ranging from contemporary to classical. The city also offers plenty of diverse nightlife, from the quaint bars and restaurants tucked away in the Old Town to the more energetic Rue de Holleric, a swiftly developing area where most of the city’s trendiest night spots are located.

The cosmopolitan capital is perched high atop a rocky outcrop, overlooking the rivers Petrusse and Alzette, and offers stunning views from the city’s old ramparts – both by day and by night. The Petrusse valley is renowned as an area of exceptional natural beauty that has previously inspired artists such as Goethe to write about and paint it, making it the ideal vista to enjoy while appreciating the local cuisine.

Luxembourg’s diminutive size (51 miles from north to south, 32 from east to west) ensures that nothing is ever too far away, meaning that should one wish to escape to the country, a short journey will suffice. Just an hour’s flight from London, Luxembourg will surely cater to the needs of anybody looking for a short break or something to do while away on business.

Luxembourg layovers
Eat:
– Mosconi – 13, rue Munster – 2160 Grund (Gastronomic Italian – two Michelin stars)
– Clairefontaine – 9, Place de Clairefontaine – 1341 Luxembourg (Gastronomic French – one Michelin star)
Stay:
– Hotel Albert Premier, 2a rue Albert Premier (www.albert1er.lu)
– Casanova, 10 Place Guillame (www.hotelcasanova.lu)
See:
– Am Tunnel, a subterranean art gallery running for 380m beneath the National Savings Bank, 16 rue Zithe
– National Museum of History and Art, Marche-aux-Poissons, L- 2345 Luxembourg (www.mnha.lu)

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