Beautiful Luxembourg, Luxembourg (sometimes known as Luxembourg Ville or Luxembourg City), was founded in AD 963. It is filled with museums, old churches, ruined fortresses and lovely parks. Much of the city is built on top of hills and cliffs overlooking the Alzette and Petrusse rivers and steep ravines.

The best way to see the city is on foot. The tourist office runs guided walks, and it also has self-guided walking-tour maps. Be sure to crisscross the beautiful bridges and stroll the Promenade de la Corniche—you'll see wonderful views of the city.

Luxembourg City was once one of the most fortified cities in Europe—it was called the Gibraltar of the North. A series of tunnels and passageways, called casemates, are just under the Corniche. They were extensive enough to shelter the entire city during times of siege. Many are still open to the public during the main tourist season, and they're fun to explore. The elegant Spanish turrets and the towers of Rham are other examples of the city's former defenses.

We also enjoyed visiting the National Museum, which has displays on minerals, archaeology, painting, natural science, history and industrial art. Modern art can be found at the architect I.M. Pei-designed MUDAM building.

Other points of interest include the 11th-century Abbey of Munster (now a cultural center), the 17th-century Cathedral of Our Lady of Luxembourg and Casino Luxembourg (a forum for contemporary art). An afternoon can be spent looking at the 10th-century St. Michael's Church, the Renaissance-style Grand-Ducal Palace and some of the government's ministries, housed in elegant belle epoque buildings.

The Place d'Armes is the city's main square. It's at the center of a pedestrian area, where you'll find many restaurants and open-air cafes. Gourmet dining is an integral part of life in Luxembourg, which has the most Michelin-star restaurants per capita in the world.

For shopping, visit the Grand Rue, home of big-name designers and jewelry stores. More affordable items and souvenirs can be found in the area around the central train station.

We recommend a two-night visit to Luxembourg City. Day trips can be taken to any point in Luxembourg.

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