Switzerland Panormaic

It is Lucerne to the French and English, Lucerna in Italian, and Luzern to the locals. Any way you spell it, the town is a great site to go for vacation. Unfortunately, we didn't even spend one night here, but stopped to get a breather about 3/4 of the way on our train ride from Interlaken to Zurich. Once again, most of the interesting stuff in the town is within walking distance from the train station. Above on the right is a the famous Chapel Bridge over the Reuss River where it empties into Lake Lucerne.

The lion sculpture, by Bertel Thorwaldsen, was completed in 1821 as a dedication to more than 700 Swiss soldiers who died protecting French royalty in 1792. The stone lion is not far from the Bourbaki Panorama painting, by Edouard Castres, which is a 360 degree panoramic. The painting shows Swiss volunteers coming to the aid of wounded soldiers, the first major relief effort for the newly formed Red Cross.

Another tourist site is the Baroque Jesuit Church with the two "onion" domes. You can see in the close-up of the wooden Chapel Bridge just how impressive the carpentry is. There is also a number of museums, including a one based on Picasso. The "Old Town" section is a pedestrian area and an interesting vacation stop. If you are there around New Year's, it might be worth looking for the "Battle of the (Marching) Bands"(?). They have great costumes.

These photos were taken in 2005.