Liechtenstein has always been a country (principality) I’ve wanted to visit so when I knew I would be in Innsbruck, it seemed close enough to finally visit. I was told by a tourism officer in Prague that ‘Oh you can just drive through Liechtenstein in a day’. That was definitely not part of my plan as for me a drive thru is surely what you do at McDonalds or somewhere but certainly not a country.
From Innsbruck, it took just under 3 hours taking a train to Feldkirch, a city on the border with Switzerland and Liechtenstein and then a bus from just outside the train station to Vaduz. Both of these journeys are worth it for the beautiful alpine scenery you pass along the way and then when crossing the border you get an idea of life in Liechtenstein. Through the journeys, you are surrounded by mountains and in Vaduz they are ever-present at every angle as the Alps surround you.
I can see why some would just drive through if they are staying in Switzerland, Austria or Germany, however you would miss out on taking in the language, greeting and being greeted with ‘Hoi’ by the locals and if you go on the right day, then you will get to visit all the museums. Unfortunately, I went on a Monday when all museums apart from the Post museum were closed. My hotel was in the town centre which was perfect as I was only staying overnight before returning to Innsbruck at 9am the next day.
Vaduz is the capital of Liechtenstein and sits on the Rhine river near the Swiss border with a population of 5,450 which explains why everyone greets each other with ‘Hoi’ as they could easily know everyone. Vaduz castle stands out on a hill overlooking the town and is a royal family residence.
The museums you could visit from Tuesday onwards, are the Kunstmuseum (Art museum) and the Landesmuseum (National Museum). The Cathedral of St Florin is a Neo – Gothic church in Vaduz and is open and free to visit.
Vaduz is 300 years old in 2019 and there are many events organised throughout the year to celebrate. An interesting one which is launched from 26th May is a trail through Liechtenstein which can either be done in one go or in stages.
The currency is the Swiss Franc although you can use Euros in some places either at a 1 for 1 rate or being able to only give Euro notes and accept change in Swiss Franc. If you can speak German, then be aware that you will not understand the Swiss German that is spoken by locals. All is not lost though as they will understand your German and English.
Other buildings which are great to look at are the Town Hall, Government building and Parliament building. There are also some nice statues to take in as you walk through the town centre.
For 3 CHF, you can also get a stamp in your passport to prove you were there! Yes of course I had to.