Never thought this trip becomes one of my memorable solo trips. I feel I need to document the story of this trip before excitement and memories are gradually swallowed up by time….
Luxembourg had never been included in my trip’s list, to be honest, not until unexpectedly it showed up on google maps when I was searching for a place. ‘It is an accessible place to visit while I am in Netherlands, why don’t I look into it and find out what to do there’, I told to myself. I started exploring that country, and found some interesting information on You Tube and Wikipedia. How uninformed I was of that tiny yet beautiful country! as I couldn’t find friends to travel with (seemed that place was not in their trips’ list), so I decided to travel alone and proved what some people testified about that country…I spent two days there as that was the only perfect time I had, also because that was my first solo trip. I was a bit worried what it would be like to travel alone… I booked the train ticket, accommodation, and made a detailed itinerary. As I would be travelling to 3 places in Luxembourg; Esch Sur Sure, Vianden, and Luxembourg City, itinerary was a must! ‘I hope everything is going on track and as expected’ I said to myself. Some friends who have been doing solo travelling told me that it’s gonna be fine to travel alone in Europe, as everything would be on schedule and predictable. ‘Well, that sounds nice’.
As Luxembourg City was not my priority, on the first day, I was directly heading off to Esch Sur Sure, a tiny village on the Northwest of Luxembourg. To get there, from Luxembourg Train Station, I took train to Ettlebruck and from there I caught a bus no. 535. I reached Esch Sur Sure around 2 pm. I really could expect that this small village surrounded by mountains would be a beautiful village, as I couldn’t stop being amazed of the natural beauty of villages, pasture, and countryside along the way in the direction of Esch Sur Sure.
Esch Sur Sure lies by the river Sauer in one side and a hill in the other side. I spent more than two hours enjoying that breath taking small village from a ruined Esch Sur Sure Castle up on the hill. That is the best spot I found in which I could sit and enjoy the view of every side of the village, with milka chocolate in hands! As I wasn’t gonna stay overnight there, I carried my backpack with me while I was climbing up the hill. I felt I was a real adventurer, haha!
The place was very quiet and peaceful, as it wasn’t a peak season, so there were no many visitors coming. One day I should stay there and do some walking along the river up to the forest! Before I was continuing my journey to another destination, I walked around the village for one and a half hours or so, being curious of that small village. It won’t take us long to explore the village tho.
Done with the Esch Sur Sure, I caught a 535 bus going to Ettlebruck and from there a 570 bus to Vianden, a small town close to the border between Luxembourg and Germany. I arrived in Vianden around 7 pm and stayed overnight there in a hostel called Youth International Hostel, situated just by the Vianden Castle.
I started my small journey in the Vianden town at around 8 in the morning. As the castle was opened at 10 o clock, I decided to make a tour around the castle and the hill. After making negotiation with the hostel’s official, I left my backpack in the hostel so that my movement could be easier and faster. As the hostel was located in the hilly side of Vianden Town, it only took me around 5 minutes walking to a nice lookout of the Vianden Town. That was a real breathtaking view of Vianden Town situated between two hills and a river called Our River. In the morning, that beautiful view combined with a peaceful nature was just perfect!
I spent half an hour or so in the lookout before continuing the walking into the forest. Well, the forest is not like an untouchable forest. It is well managed and in spring or summer time that forest must be a place for outbound activities. In some spots I could see outbound equipment such as hanging bridges, some signs of jungle trekking, high ropes, etc.
While walking and exploring the forest, I could not hear other voices except birds’ voices welcoming me as the only visitor. The more I went into the forest, the merrier they’re singing and communicating to each other as if they were happy with a guest. I kept walking following the path until I reached another stunning spot. I stopped there, sitting and facing the Our River surrounded by hills. I spent about one hour there doing nothing except whispering to self “How amazing the Creator must be crafting such a beautiful place like this”. As I was enjoying the nature, my mind directed me to a similar place in my hometown, a lake enclosed by hills…If I don’t have to stick to my schedule, I don’t mind spending hours and hours there.
The Vianden Castle was constructed from the 11th and 14th century on the foundation of a roman fort. That is why inside the castle we could see many collections of weapons, roman soldier’s costume, and swords. After the restoration around 1977, the castle ranks as a monument of the European importance.
Finished with inside the castle, my journey would not complete without experiencing a chairlift connecting the top of the Vianden Hill and the low part of Vianden Town. Again I climbed up the hill to get to the top in which I started the chairlift journey. As I have a fear of height, I was a bit worried if I could be enjoying the chairlift. After talking to self didn’t work to ensure myself that it’s gonna be ok, I asked someone who just finished the ride whether the chairlift was too shaky. He convinced me that the chairlift was very soft and smooth, and then I decided to try. At first, while the chairlift took me down the hill, I felt my legs were shaking because of the fear. But not until 2 minutes, knowing that the chairlift was really smooth, I began to enjoy the journey. And guess what, I decided to do it round trip, chairlift going down the hill and up the hill! Haha.. For round trip it cost me 5 euros.
With heart full of excitement, I was heading off to the Luxembourg City, in which I spent around three hours before going back to Rotterdam. As the city was not my priority, I only planned to visit two famous places, the Pont Adolphe, a national symbol; and the Grund, a neighborhood in a valley of the Luxembourg City Center as the place of cafes and restaurants.
In the train going back to Rotterdam, I was smiling to self thinking…it was one of my best trips, much more wonderful than I expected.