Oct 5th, 2012 | By | Category: Senior Travel

Senior Citizen Attracted to History

I would imagine that the majority of Americans could not easily find Luxembourg on a map. It is a small country with a lot of history associated with its past. In Luxembourg they like to say that “Good Things Come In Small Packages” …there are less than a half million inhabitants and the country is about half the size of Delaware. The Ardennes Mountains extend from Belgium into the northern section of Luxembourg. The rolling plateau of the fertile Bon Pays is to the south. Senior travelers find the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg to be replete with historic monuments, fairy-tale like castles, and the not-to-be-missed capital city of Luxembourg itself.

An attractive country with a green and picturesque landscape of rolling hills and valleys, and many closely packed historical sites, senior citizen travelers will also discover forests, vineyards and striking sandstone rock formations. The population is predominantly rural based – the only centers of any size are the capital, Luxembourg City, followed by Esch-sur-Alzette.

Senior Travelers Enjoy Luxembourg-Ville

Luxembourg City,  a storybook beauty – often described as Europe’s most dramatically sited – radiates a composed air of old and new. The capital is split into two districts: the delightful old centre, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, complete with fortress towers, turrets and winding, cobblestone streets; and the modern downtown area on the Plâteau du Kirchberg, home to Luxembourg’s renowned international finance businesses.

Luxembourg boasts a large array of historical and cultural sights.  World Travel Guide finds that the Ardennes region will delight seniors while discovering the delightful old centre of the capital, Luxembourg-Ville. You will view the fortress towers, turrets and winding, cobblestone streets. Don’t miss the underground tunnels, known as casemates, and hop on the special open-air tourist train through the Petrusse Valley. See the changing of the guard at the Palais Grand Ducal, the Grand Duke’s official residence. Other attractions in Luxembourg-Ville include the Place Guillaume (also called Knuedler) and its twice-weekly market (Wednesday and Saturday); and the 17th-century Notre Dame Cathedral.

The city of Luxembourg is the seat of several institutions and agencies of the EU. Its culture is a mix of Romance Europe and Germanic Europe, borrowing customs from each of the distinct traditions. View the entire city with this 8-minute video.

The Grand Duchy of Luxembourg

Luxembourg is officially called the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg.  The world’s only Grand Duchy, Luxembourg is a constitutional monarchy neighboring Belgium, France, and Germany. Covering less than 1,000 square miles, Luxembourg is home to nearly 450,000 residents, with about a fifth of these individuals residing in or near Luxembourg City.

Its historic and strategic importance dates back to its founding as a Roman era fortress site and a Frankish count’s castle site in the Early Middle Ages. It was an important bastion along the Spanish Road when Spain was the principal European power influencing the whole western hemisphere and beyond in the 16th–17th centuries. The name Luxembourg appeared for the first time in the year 963 when it denoted a simple castle built by Count Siegfried on a hill known as the Bock. Today, you can observe some of its remains on a visit to the popular Bock casemates and the archeological crypt of the Count’s castle.

Luxembourg is a trilingual country, German, French and Luxembourgish. Luxembourg ranks as the world’s top city for personal safety and security, according to a 2005 Quality of Life survey by Mercer Human Resource Consulting, a leading consulting organization with offices worldwide. Residents have the highest income per capita of any country in the world. Luxembourg has the greatest concentration of banks in the European community, more than 220 banks,  and the European Investment Bank is headquartered in Luxembourg. A strong steel and iron industry further contribute to the country’s healthy economy, as does agriculture, tourism, plastic and rubber, and electrical equipment.

Lonely Planet will keep seniors busy

Luxembourg is fairy-tale stuff…complete with the happy ending. The story of this land’s tumultuous history beguiles with its counts and dynasties, wars and victories, fortresses and promontories. Only the dragon is missing. It’s no surprise that Luxembourgers are a proud people whose national motto, Mir wëlle bleiwe wat mir sin (‘We want to remain what we are’), sums up their independent spirit.

Senior travelers, when you are in Europe wandering through France and Germany,  take a short trip to Luxembourg and enjoy the many fine sites. jeb

Tags: , , , ,

Leave Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.