I am actually in the United Kingdom now, after a blissful time in Europe. However I thought I would share some of my favourite images of my experience in Luxembourg, one of the world's smallest countries. We based ourselves in Luxembourg city and had a few day trips to explore provincial Luxembourg, as well. Upon arriving we spent the afternoon walking the streets to get our bearings. First thing we noticed was that it is so very clean, not a single scrap of rubbish to be seen! I wish the rest of the world could have an ounce of Luxembourgish pride.
You can look over the 12th century fortress walls and see landscaped gardens and potagers, the walls formed almost like a balcony over the city.
One of the first stops on most visitor's agenda is the royal palace, called the Grand Ducal Palace. It dates from the 16th century and has a story-book facade. I was almost looking for rapunzel!
Partly for touristic entertainment, perhaps, this guard marched up and down in front of the palace with a whole lot of foot stomping to boot. I am sure the gun was real, though! We watched him as we sat at the Chocolate House opposite and enjoyed the most delicious treat, a "chocospoon", a spoon shaped lump of chocolate which you stir into a cup of hot milk. There is a wall of flavours to choose from, my idea of heaven.
The flower market on Saturdays in the city centre, the flowers were amazing and so affordable! I would love to have this market in my village every week, my home would be full of flowers...
And the produce market was just as abundant! Look at the size of these cheese wheels! (Not a bad copper milk can, either. Forever the antique dealer).
And of course, I managed to find a little brocante, or flea market in the town, held on Saturday mornings.
A beautiful iron grill in a door speaks of times past.
And I found the colours of these doors gorgeous, I took a picture to use the colour somewhere back home.
Vianden was one of day trips to country Luxembourg, renowned for this impressive castle perched on the hill overlooking the village. The fortress castle was built between the 11th and 14th centuries, and again stuff of fairy tales. We toured throughout the castle which was amazingly a ruin until more recent times, when reconstruction and restoration began in the 1970s.
Another day trip was to Remich in the Moselle valley, where we toured the caves of the famous St Martin cellars. The caves provide the perfect climatic conditions for the fermentation and storage of their Crémant, a sparkling wine equivalent to the French champagne. I was amazed at how many oak riddling racks the cellar held in the caves, used for the hand turning of the bottles of Crémant, a crucial process for the production of sparkling wines.
And finally, on the last day in the city, I found a piece for myself, above, in one of the antiques stores. I have always had a crush on vellum books and have a little collection at home. But this example tops the cake. It dates to 1544 and has an exquisitely tooled binding, both front and back. It is German and has a picture of a saint in the central frame of both sides, one of which we believe to be depicting St Martin Luther. The other? Well more investigation required...
Until next time,