If Switzerland is considered the Soul of the Alps then Liechtenstein is truly its Heart. Liechtenstein is often one of those countries that people have heard of but few know exactly where it is and even fewer have ever visited. In fact, according to the United Nations World Tourism Organization, in 2016 it was Europe’s second least visited country with a mere 69,000 visitors. While they would love more tourism, the tiny Principality of Liechtenstein is a true gem to those who do wander across its borders. They treat their visitors like family and appreciate anyone willing to give them a chance. If you do venture to the 6th smallest country in the world, let 11 Things to do in Liechtenstein be your guide.Visiting the 6th smallest country in the world #Liechtenstein is definitely on my travel bucket list! Click To Tweet
1) Get one of the rarest passport stamps ever!
Being a landlocked country that has no international airport, chances are to get to Liechtenstein you will have to visit one of its next door neighbors – Austria or Switzerland first before entering the country. But that doesn’t mean you can’t get the official Liechtenstein stamp in your passport. Just head over to the Liechtenstein Center or the tourism booth next to the City Train to get your stamp for 3€ or if you purchase the Museum and Adventure Pass you’ll get it for FREE.
2) Walk the Städtle
The Städtle is a beautiful pedestrian street that runs through the city center of Vaduz. Here you will find a wonderful mix of local cafes, shops, government buildings, and museums. Along with the magnificent buildings, there are also several modern art sculptures that line the street including the horse statues by Swiss artist Nag Arnoldi in front of the Rathaus city town hall.
Strolling along the Städtle also offers the opportunity to mail those post cards with the rare Liechtenstein Postage stamp. After writing your letters home and enjoying a coffee or a Alpagold Liechtensteiner Lagerbier at one of the Städtle’s cafes, head over to Post Vaduz (located Städtle 38) to send them off.
3) Explore the Cathedral of St. Florin
- From Life to Death Bronze Statues beneath the front steps that showcase the Virgin Mary holding her son Jesus in two defining moments of their lives.
- The Royal Box above the Sanctuary where the royal family sits during mass.
- The Furstliche Gruft also known at the Princely Vault behind the Cathedral is the final resting place for the Royal Family. Currently Prince Franz Joseph II, his wife Princess Georgina, and Princess Elisabeth are all buried here.
4) See the Josef Rheinberger Memorial & Music School
Josef Gabriel Rheinberger is one of Liechtenstein’s favorite sons. Born in 1839 in Vaduz, he revealed an unbelievable musical talent by age 7 playing the organ. Then by the ripe age of 8 he had written his first composition and it was publicly performed that year. After some convincing, his father finally sent the boy to study in Munich where his music career flourished. Rheinberger died in 1901 in Munich. However, his grave was destroyed during World War II and in 1950 his remains were transferred back to his birthplace of Vaduz.
Behind the memorial you can still see kids entering his original home to attend the Liechtenstein School of Music.
Fun Fact: In Liechtenstein, in proportion to the population, twice as many people take music lessons than in Switzerland, and five times more than in Germany (source: Liechtenstein Board of Tourism)
5) Visit the many museums
There is no doubt that Liechtenstein supports cultural and artistic growth. This is quite evident with the Liechtenstein Museum and Adventure Pass that allows you to visit most of the museums for free. And if you know me, if it’s free give me 3! However, there are far more than 3 unbelievable museums in Liechtenstein. With a plethora to choose from, it isn’t hard to find a museum to satisfy your interests.
- Treasure Chamber Liechtenstein: This was perhaps one of our favorite museums. Known locally as the Schatzkammer, it houses many exhibits belonging to the Princes of Liechtenstein and other collectors. Inside, you will find amazing Fabergé Eggs, historic weaponry, and a replica of the Royal Crown. We loved seeing the lunar rocks collected by the astronauts on board Apollo 11 and Apollo 17.
- The Postage Stamp Museum: A museum about stamps?!? Heck Yeah and it’s awesome. This museum showcases the hard to get beautiful stamps issued in Liechtenstein throughout history. Moreover, it also shares the history of the postal service in the country. We particularly liked seeing the interesting and unusual tools they used to deliver mail.
- The National Museum: This museum, known locally as the Landesmuseum, offers over 3,000 exhibits showcasing the history and culture of Liechtenstein. In fact the Landesmuseum’s building itself is historic. It was once the princely tavern where Goethe visited during his travels in 1788.
- Liechtenstein Art Museum: Considered an architectural masterpiece, the Kunstmuseum as it is known locally, offers exhibits in both modern and contemporary art. Often there are also special exhibitions from the Prince of Liechtenstein’s own private collection.
- The Hilti Art Foundation: Located next to the Liechtenstein Art Museum (Kunstmuseum), the Hilti Art Foundation showcases exhibits from classical modernist to contemporary. Here you will see sculptures and paintings by artists including Gauguin, Picasso, Magritte, and many more.
6) Straddle the boarder between Liechtenstein and Switzerland
While in Liechtenstein why not hike over to it’s big brother Switzerland? Actually it is more like a casual scenic walk than a hike. Located about 15 minutes from the city center of Vaduz, is the Alte Rheinbrucke. The beautiful covered wooden bridge spans 443 feet (135 meters) across the Rhine river. As you enter the last surviving wooden bridge across the Rhine built around 1901, make your way to center. Here you will find the sign denoting the Liechtenstein-Swiss border.
Fun Fact: Did you know that you can get your Kicks on Route 66 in Liechtenstein? There’s an official signposted Route 66 hiking trail that crosses the entire country. In 3 one-day stages, hikers can cross from one side of the Principality of Liechtenstein to the other. (source: Liechtenstein Board of Tourism)
7) Have fun storming the castle
Overlooking all of the City of Vaduz is the 16th century medieval Vaduz Castle and home to the Prince of Liechtenstein and his family. Sadly, you cannot take a tour of the castle because the princely family still actively lives there. But that doesn’t mean you can’t see it up close and personal.
To get there, start hiking next to Brasserie Burg restaurant on the Städtle. Bring a bottle of water and your camera for the 20 minute hike up the slightly steep incline to Vaduz Castle. Don’t fret though, there are plenty of stopping points to rest and signs along the trail detailing the history of the country, castle and princely family. Make sure to stop at Känzeli Viewpoint to take in the amazing views of the city of Vaduz and the Rhine river valley.
Fun Fact: The Princely Family can frequently be seen going about their daily business, shopping or attending a concert in Vaduz. In fact, local children often greet the Prince with a friendly “Hoi Förscht”! (source: Liechtenstein Board of Tourism)
8)Take a ride on the Citytrain
Easily making the 11 Things to do in Liechtenstein and one of our favorite things we did in Vaduz was ride the Citytrain. This 35 minute train ride takes you on a relaxing tour of the Central Village (Mitteldorf), by the Rotes Haus, and down the Städtle. If you are limited on time, this is a great way to tour the city as the conductor educates you on all the major sights. Plus it is FREE with the Liechtenstein Museum and Adventure Pass.After reading 11 Things to do in Liechtenstein I'm adding it to my travel bucket list. #Liechtenstein Click To Tweet
9) Stop by the Rotes Haus (the Red House)
After Vaduz Castle, the Rotes Haus (Red House) is probably the second most iconic landmark in Vaduz. Located in the historic village area of Vaduz known as Mitteldorf, this house was built in 1338. Around the mid 1500s it was purchased and became St. Johann Monastery and the “Abtswingert” (abbey vineyard) was developed. Later in 1807 the Red House was bought and is still owned by the Rheinberger family. Whether you walk here after “Storming the Castle” or visit it while riding the Citytrain, it is a must see.
10) Drink princely wine, local lagerbier, or wood fired spirits
Liechtenstein produces its own excellent wine, beer and whiskey that will appease even the choosiest of connoisseurs. This is perhaps due to the favorable climate surrounding the Rhine Valley or maybe the fact that Liechtensteiners demand quality in everything they create. Either way, you will reap the benefits of their various local libation.
- Wine: There are several vineyards throughout Liechtenstein, but visiting the Princely Cellars in Vaduz should definitely be on your list! Known locally as the Hofkellerei, this vineyard is actually owned by the Prince of Liechtenstein. Make sure you stop by for your own personal wine tasting of their Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. If you have the Liechtenstein Museum and Adventure Pass, you will get a tasting of each for FREE!
- Beer: For those who love a good beer you should definitely try one of the local brews from Liechtensteiner Brauhaus or Prinzenbräu. You won’t be disappointed in the wonderful flavor and variety either has to offer.
- Spirits: When it comes to Liechtensteiner Spirits, look no further than Telser Distillery. Started in 1880, this family run distillery offers a variety of spirits including Gin, Rum, and Whiskey. Telser is unique because their spirits are still distilled over an open wood fire. Make sure you visit them for a guided tour, followed by a tasting session.
11) Enjoy the great food
Goethe once said about Liechtenstein, “As a rule, where fine wines grow, cuisine also tends to be excellent.” From guest house taverns and cafes along the Städtle to fine dining options, Liechtenstein has something to offer everyone.
- For Breakfast: There are plenty of cafes to stop in for a light breakfast, but for a unique breakfast opportunity head over to Bangshof farmyard. Here you can enjoy the Farmer’s Breakfast of homemade jams, cheese, eggs, meat products, fresh bread and other seasonal treats from a rich buffet.
- For Lunch: If you are looking for a great lunch, head over to the Städtle where you will find many great options including Burg Brasserie. They have great sandwiches, gigantic burgers, and an assortment of delicious pizzas made to order.
- For Dinner: If you prefer home style cooking then you will be more than happy with the plethora of choices. We particularly loved the food at both Landgasthof Rössle and the Restaurant Adler Vaduz 1908.
- For Fine Dining: If you are searching for fine dining, then Liechtenstein won’t disappoint. With restaurants like b’eat and Restaurant Kommod, to name a few, you will be treated to wonderfully crafted dishes and tasty drinks all in a classy environment.
Fun Fact: Every 6th pizza that is eaten in Germany comes from the Liechtenstein-based company Ospelt Food GmbH. (source: Liechtenstein Board of Tourism)
How to Get To Liechtenstein
As mentioned above, Liechtenstein doesn’t have a major airport, so you will likely visit Austria or Switzerland before entering the country. If you are not renting a car, then chances are you will be arriving by bus or train to Sargans, Switzerland in the South or Feldkirk, Austria in the North. From either destination you then easily hop on the Liechtenstein Bus to take you to your final destination in Liechtenstein.
We recommend you use GoEuro to find the best way to arrive at either border destination. GoEuro allows you to find the fastest, cheapest and best travel options by train, bus and flight to any city, town or village in Europe.
How to Get Around in Liechtenstein
We found it very easy to get around and discover 11 Things to do in Liechtenstein via the Liechtenstein Bus. The buses are extremely punctual, clean, and comfortable. The drivers are great and were very helpful when we had questions. Also if you have the Liechtenstein Museum and Adventure Pass your bus travel is FREE!
Fun Fact: Liechtenstein does not have its own currency. The Swiss franc has been the official legal tender since 1924 though Euros are widely accepted as well. (source: Liechtenstein Board of Tourism)
Where to Stay
There are plenty of places to stay in Liechtenstein that will fit any traveler’s style and budget. Whether you are looking for an active hostel, a family owned guest house, or a quiet luxury hotel, you won’t be disappointed in your options.
- Budget: Youth Hostel Schaan-Vaduz is located in Schaan, and is convenient to Rheinpark Stadium and Liechtenstein Art Museum.
Mid-Priced: If you are looking for convenience and a good price than check out the Residence Hotel. This hotel is located in the city center of Vaduz beneath Vaduz Castle.
- Luxury: After staying at Hotel Kommod it is obvious that they take pride in offering a comfortable, practical, and effortless stay. Kommod is the ideal location for business guests, nature lovers and travelers alike. They made it very easy for us to discover our 11 Things to do in Liechtenstein.
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Have you ever been to Liechtenstein? Which of the 11 Things to do in Liechtenstein is your favorite? Have we left out other things to do in Liechtenstein that you would recommend? Let us know in the comments below!
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