What is the capital of Luxembourg?

What is the capital of Luxembourg?

21st August 2019 2 By Biggsy
Reading Time: 5 minutes

Last Updated on 24th July 2020

Luxembourg is a landlocked European country nestled in-between Germany, France and Belgium. There are 12 towns in Luxembourg but you’d be hard pressed to name any of them other than the capital city of ‘Luxembourg City’ which lies to the south of the country. A lot of people visit the country to see its UNESCO certified, fortified medieval old town perched on the imposing sheer cliffs.

As the UK waves goodbye to the EU it’s timely to mention that Luxembourg was also among the 6 founders of the EU (along with Belgium, France, Germany, Italy and the Netherlands). It was also one of the 12 founding members of NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization). The country certainly likes to “get involved”.

The view of Neumünster Abbey and Alzette from up on the Casemates du Bock
The “picture postcard” view of Neumünster Abbey and the Alzette river from up on the Casemates du Bock

So what is the capital of Luxembourg then?

The capital of Luxembourg is indeed Luxembourg City. ‘Luxembourg’ itself got its name from the Lucilinburhuc (“little fortress”) castle bought by Siegfried, count of Ardennes, in 963 AD. This point in time marked the foundation of the country.

Our tour guide amused me by telling us how he writes down his address. There are lots of “Luxembourgs” in there!

[His name]
[His street name]
Luxembourg City
Luxembourg [the region]
Luxembourg [the country]

Don’t head to the beach!

Luxembourg is another one of those tripoint countries where you can visit 3 countries within 10 minutes, just like I did when I visited Basel and stepped from France into Germany, before finally arriving back in Switzerland.

In Luxembourg you can visit (Google link):

  1. Rodange in the south west to step into France & Belgium.
  2. Europadenkmal Dreiländereck Ouren in the north east to step into Belgium, & Germany.
  3. Schengen in the south east to step into France & Germany.
Google Maps showing Luxembourg's three tripoints
Luxemboug actually has 3 tripoints with Luxembourg City shown towards the south of the country

How many Luxembourgers am I likely to meet?

The entire country’s population is approximately 525k. That’s only slightly more than Leicester (505k) and a bit less than Glasgow (591k). With the highest number of expats among European countries, interestingly a whopping 43% of the population are actually foreign residents.

What language should I brush up on?

The country has 3 official languages: French, German and Lëtzebuergesch (Luxembourgish), with the latter being used in everyday conversations. English is of course widely spoken and once again put us Brits to shame.

Most of the restaurants had menus in French and German; the same for some of the informational boards dotted around the city.

9 interesting Luxembourg facts & things to see and eat!

1. The Adolph Bridge, completed in 1903 had the largest stone arch in existence (84.65m). The views from “underneath” the bridge along a raised walkway give great views back across the ‘Parcs de la Pétrusse’.

The view of the Notre Dame from underneath the Adolphe Bridge
Bridge with a view! Walk underneath as well as on the top of it!

2. Luxembourg is the only remaining Grand Duchy in the world with a Grand Duke as head of state. Visit the Grand Ducal Palace in the city centre.

3. The country’s motto is “Mir wëlle bleiwe wat mir sin” meaning “We want to remain what we are”. This building is by the Konschthaus Beim Engel

Luxembourg's slogan written on a house's wall
“Mir wölle bleiwe wat mir sin” (We want to remain what we are)

4. One of Luxembourg’s specialties is bouneshclupp, a green bean soup usually served with Gromperekichelcher (potato pancakes), Rendfleeschbritt (Beef broth with vermicelli) and Gromperenzopp (a potato soup with leeks, egg yolks, and cream).

5. The City Skyliner was in town during the summer of 2019 with it actually ending for the season on our last day in the city (18th August). Check if it’s going to be there for your visit. It’s actually the highest mobile observation tower in the world, and afforded us great views of the Notre Dame Cathedral, the Adolph Bridge and the ‘Parcs de la Pétrusse’.

The largest mobile observation tower in the world ... in Luxembourg
The largest mobile observation tower in the world … in Luxembourg

6. It has the largest gross domestic product (GDP) per capita in the world in 2014 at $111,716 based on the International Monetary Fund’s World Economic Outlook Report in April 2015.

7. CHOCOLATE!!! Make sure to visit the Chocolate House and indulge yourself in a ‘hotchocolatespoon’ and optional Schwarzwalderkirschtorte! We had some of this at the gateaux’s original location at Triberg in Germany.

The Chocolate House Nathalie Bonn and its giant cakes
Definitely try their specialty – dippy chocolate in hot milk!

8. The Casements du Bock! In 963 Count Siegfried built a fortified castle on the Bock promontory. It eventually turned into one of the most powerful emplacements in the world, the “Gibraltar of the North” no less. Among other things the defences were bolstered by a unique 23 km long network of casemates; 17km of which remain today for you to explore.

9. Opposite the Neumünster Abbey is a pink statue of Mesulina reminding visitors of the story of Count Siegfried and his princess. She eventually accepted his marriage proposal, but on one condition. On Saturdays the Count was to leave her alone in her room and neither see her or attempt to see what she was doing.

Needless to say temptation got the better of him and he peeped through a keyhole to see what she was up to. Imagine his horror when he saw her splashing about in a large pool, her body ending in a fish tail.

Sitting on Mesulina's lap opposite the Neumünster Abbey
Just checking on the football scores …

What other places share similar capital names to their country names?

So what is the capital of Luxembourg? Well now you know, but what other capitals share the same name as their country?

Now there’s bound to be some controversy here to what is a country and what’s not?! 🙂 The list below contains all technicalities whether they are autonomous regions, principalities or actual countries. Which takes me neatly on to country counting and my take on whether counting how many you’ve been to is actually a good thing or a bad thing?

What capitals share the same name as the country?

Hong Kong, Macau, San Marino, Singapore & Vatican City

What capitals have the word ‘city’ on the end of their country name?

Djibouti City, Guatemala City, Kuwait City, Luxembourg City, Mexico City, Monaco City & Panama City.

Which capital cities are similar to their country name?

Algiers (Algeria), Andorra la Vella (Andorra), Brasilia (Brazil), Santo Domingo (Dominican Republic), San Salvador (El Salvador), Bissau (Guinea-Bissau), São Tomé (São Tomé and Principe), Taipei (“Chinese Taipei”) & Tunis (Tunisia).

If you want to learn more about Luxembourg then check out this Britannica link.

Who’s already been to Luxembourg City and can suggest some other great places to visit?

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