If you’ve decided to include unconventional places on your European travel itinerary, consider visiting the Principality of Liechtenstein. You can tour this tiny Alpine country sandwiched between Switzerland and Austria in just a couple of days. Here are some tips and tricks to enjoying your time in Liechtenstein.
7 THINGS TO DO IN LIECHTENSTEIN
1. Purchase an Adventure Pass
The Adventure Pass (AP) is the best way to get the most out of your time and your money. My friend SK and I stayed two days and one night in Liechtenstein, and the 2-Day Adventure Pass made our trip fun, memorable, and worry-free.
From admission to swimming pools and museums to a souvenir stamp in your passport, the Adventure Pass includes free access or discounts to most of the tourist activities throughout the country. While the attraction list is comprehensive (Click HERE to visit the official website), I think the biggest advantage to buying an Adventure Pass is a little more practical: all-inclusive access to Liechtenstein’s bus network. Bus tickets are steep, and if you rely on the bus to get around, like we did, then the AP becomes a mega-franc-saver!
With Adventure Pass in hand, you can start your visit in Vaduz, the capital of Liechtenstein. Unfortunately, the AP won’t get you into the scenic Vaduz Castle that sits atop a cliff overlooking the Rhine Valley. That’s because no visitors are allowed inside the stone fortress; the castle is the official family residence of the Prince! Yet, just below this royal dwelling lies the heart of the city, where you’ll find many of the AP attractions.
2. Linger in The Liechtenstein National Museum
A tour of the Liechtensteinische Landesmuseum is a pleasant and educational experience. In addition to the permanent exhibits that illustrate the history of the region, the temporary exhibits were quite good as well. Who knew that I could learn so much about Marilyn Monroe in Liechtenstein? Didn’t see that one coming!
3. Pass through The Treasure Chamber
The entrance to the Schatzkammer Liechtenstein is sure to delight children and adults alike. With special “gold coins” that you pick up at the Landesmuseum, you pass through two automatic doors before entering a single dark room, which houses the Prince’s crown, antique firearms, an impressive collection of Russian Easter eggs, and oil paintings.
4. Wonder at The Liechtenstein Art Museum
If you are a fan of contemporary art, then the Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein is the place for you. The building is ultramodern and the works are… unique? Honestly, I’m not too keen on interpreting modern art, and I found the architecture more appealing.
But the Kuntsmuseum isn’t the only place to find art in Liechtenstein. Sizable sculptures and other artistic arrangements are scattered throughout the pedestrian area of Vaduz. As you can see, we made sure to spend some time posing with our favorite pieces!
5. Relax in The Winery of the Prince
With your AP, you can enjoy two complimentary glasses of wine at the Hofkellerei des Fürsten von Liechtenstein in Vaduz. The stone cellar and banquet hall invite you to unwind and relax, as you taste the fruity spoils of Liechtenstein. You may be surprised at the selection on hand!
6. Explore the Mountain Trails
With over 400 km of hiking trails, the best way to see Liechtenstein is from the mountaintops! SK and I spent our first afternoon in the country around the mountain village of Malbun. We took the ski lift up to Sareis (included in the AP!) and then hiked the Fürstin Gina Weg to the Pfälzerhütte. Hiking the ridgeline with views of Liechtenstein, Austria and Switzerland was an absolutely incredible experience.
The route was moderately challenging, and the trek was simply spectacular. We did it in about 4 hours, which included a break at the hut for a celebratory drink and a return path back to Malbun. Of course, in the winter, you’ll have to exchange hiking boots for ski boots and then hit the slopes!
7. Enjoy Princely Moments
In between mountaineering and sightseeing, indulge in the local gastronomical scene – which very well may include deer antlers hanging on the walls. With luxurious décor, rich food, and enchanting backdrops, it doesn’t take much to imagine you’re dining like a royal.
Among the travel community, the debate over whether or not Liechtenstein is worth visiting seems to elicit a strong positive or negative reaction from commentators, mostly only the negative side. I think both positions have valid points. After all, without an airport, Liechtenstein is not the easiest country to reach, and this sovereign state is remarkably similar to its Alpine cousins. So why go? After our little trip to this tiny country, SK and I could not agree more: our trip was totally worth it. Simply put: we had a princely time in Liechtenstein!
Hoi! Does a trip to Liechtenstein appeal to you? What do you think about traveling to locations with mixed reviews? Have you ever been anywhere that totally took you by surprise?