Liechtenstein is nestled in between Switzerland and Austria and is steeped in history, culture and dramatic scenery. Stunning castles, historic sites, royal heritage and pristine nature await those visiting this Alpine state. Visitors will be surprised and delighted by how much this tiny country has to offer. Here’s our guide to some of the most beautiful places to visit in Liechtenstein.
Vaduz Castle is the stunning palace and official residence of the Prince of Liechtenstein. The castle was constructed in the 12th century and overlooks Liechtenstein’s capital city of Vaduz, which is named after the castle. The oldest part lies on the eastern side, whereas the western part of the castle was expanded in the early to mid-1600s. It is unfortunately not open to the public due to the fact that the royal family of Liechtenstein still lives here, so visitors to Liechtenstein will have to enjoy its splendor from afar.
Vaduz Castle, Vaduz, Liechtenstein, +423 238 12 00
The Hofkellerei are the Prince of Liechtenstein’s exquisite wine cellars. Liechtenstein does not immediately come to mind when thinking of fine wines but at the Hofkellerei, visitors can taste several of Liechtenstein’s high-quality, award-winning wines. The staff is very hospitable and the cozy atmosphere makes this a great destination to learn more about wine making in Liechtenstein. Visitors have the opportunity to walk along the wine trail and experience the wine making process from grapevine to final product.
Hofkellerei, Feldstrasse 4, Feldstrasse, Vaduz, Liechtenstein, +423 232 10 18
The Red House
A landmark of the capital, the Red House can be seen from a distance as it is built on a mountain. During the Middle Ages, the property belonged to the Vaistlis, liegemen at the time. However, since 1807 the Rheinberger family has owned the house. The tower of the house was a later addition in 1904. The Red House overlooks one of the most extensive vineyards in the country.
The Kunstmuseum is Liechtenstein’s fine arts museum for modern and contemporary art, located in the capital Vaduz. The building was designed by three Swiss architects; Meinrad Morger, Heinrich Degelo and Christian Kerez. The ‘black box’ design appears to be simple but river pebbles from the Rhine Valley embedded into the exterior of the building create a discreet complexity. The black color of the building was created through the use of black basalt and tinted concrete. At first glance, Liechtenstein’s Kunstmuseum may not be the most visually appealing but upon closer inspection, visitors will learn to appreciate its subtle beauty.
Kunstmuseum, 9490 Vaduz, Liechtenstein, +423 235 03 00
Cathedral of St. Florin
The Cathedral of St. Florin is one of Vaduz’s most recognizable landmarks. It is a Roman Catholic neo-Gothic church located in Vaduz that was constructed in 1874 and designed by Austrian architect Friedrich von Schmidt. The beautiful stained glass windows are tasteful and modern and the statues near the front of the building are one of the highlights. The church was raised to the status of ‘cathedral’ in 1997 and is worth a short visit when in Vaduz.
Ski Region Malbun
This stunning Alpine region is a paradise for skiing enthusiasts. It is not overly crowded, so the pristine natural scenery remains intact. Visitors are treated to some of the best views of Vaduz and the Rhine from an altitude of 1600 meters. The stunning scenery and reasonable prices are a treat for seasoned skiers, but this is also an excellent area for those who are new to skiing. The skiing facilities are well maintained and the mountainous landscape is stunning.
Ski Region Malbun, Malbun, 9497 Triesenberg, Liechtenstein, +423 230 40 00
Gutenberg Castle is one of five castles in Liechtenstein and was constructed around the year 1100. This awe-inspiring structure overlooks the small town of Balzers and remains well-preserved. The castle is not a royal residence and is therefore open to the general public free of charge. Guided tours are available and it is possible to hire the castle for weddings and special events. Archeological digs have discovered that the hill the castle is situated on has been inhabited since the Neolithic Period.
Princes’ Way Hike
If you’re up for a challenge and some amazing views, take on The Princes’ Way. It is one of the most famous paths winding its way through the Rätikon Mountains. The hike’s starting point offers views from Alp Gaflei, at an altitude of 1400 meters. Throughout the hike, the path climbs while revealing more breathtaking views as well as sections with fixed wire ropes to grip. You will have the chance to see the Three Sisters in the distance at Gaflei Saddle. The hike then continues below Helwangs Peak to ‘Chemi’ (chimney) and wanders down to Bärgalla Saddle with more views of the valleys and mountains in Liechtenstein. You finish back where you started in Gaflei, having completed a hike of six kilometers.
Princes’ Way Hike, Alp Gaflei, Liechtenstein
Castle Ruins in Schellenberg
There are two sets of castle ruins at Schellenberg. The Obere Burg (Upper Castle) was constructed in 1200 and consisted of many elements typical of medieval castles. The Untere Burg (Lower Castle) dates back to 1250 and was extended several times thereafter. It is believed that by the 16th century, the castles were no longer being inhabited and thus fell into disrepair. The ruins are now open to visitors and are free of charge.
The Eschnerberg Trail
The Eschnerberg Trail, created between 1972 and 1975, unveils the history of Liechtenstein, leading hikers to the ancient settlements of Malanser and Lutzengütle. Signs along the way include information on archaeology and local legends and myths. Walkers find themselves roaming the forest of Schellenberg with impressive views of the Rhine Valley as well as the summit of the Alpstein and the Rätikon mountains. At the end of the trail, hikers experience the town of Schellenberg. This is the location of the Biedermannhaus, the oldest house in Liechtenstein. This farmhouse was built during the 16th century and offers a look into the farming culture of the 1900’s.
The Eschnerberg Trail, between Bendern and Schellenberg, Liechtenstein
Old Rhine Bridge
The last of its kind, the wooden Old Rhine Bridge connects the Vaduz and Sevelen municipalities. The 135 meters of unpainted construction was completed in 1901. Entrance is only permitted to pedestrians and cyclists, offering a path into Switzerland from Liechtenstein over squeaky floorboards. Approximately halfway through, there is a sign indicating the crossing of borders, as the Rhine River forms the frontier between Switzerland and Liechtenstein. Today, the bridge is rustic in appearance, adding to this unique border-crossing experience.
The Old Rhine Bridge, Liechtenstein
From 1980 onwards, the Walser Heimatmuseum has marked the center of Triesenberg. It was built in 1961 under the surveillance of the parish priest of Triesenberg, Engelbert Bucher. The museum exhibits the history of the village and the local church and offers insights on the traditions and customs of the Walser population. The Walsers were German immigrants who traveled to the continent in the 13th century and settled in various places including Liechtenstein. Wood sculptures by local artist Rudolf Scädler can be found in the basement and a 400-year-old traditional Walser house can be found south of the cemetery outside the main building.
Walser Heimatmuseum, 9497 Triesenberg, Liechtenstein, +423 262 1926
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