Lucerne in the heart of Switzerland is beautiful during any season. But it is during summer when this lakeside city with majestic mountainscape truly comes alive.
Follow these tips and you will effortlessly experience the best of Lucerne this summer. Whether on foot, by train, or by boat - find out how to best explore the city of Lucerne and nearby highlights in refreshing new ways.
1. Go for a swim in Lake Lucerne
Ask any local for the most refreshing experience in Lucerne, and they will likely tell you to go for a swim. Lake Lucerne with its clear waters has been a popular bathing spot way back in time; the Luzern “Seebad” opened its doors in 1885.
Still today, many locals like to take a refreshing swim in Lake Lucerne. Be it a quick morning dip, a midday swim to cool off, or an after-work crawl. Be sure to pack your swimsuit when you visit the Seebad Luzern this summer.
2. Spend a summer eve at an outdoor bar
The longer we cannot travel to beach destinations, the more we long for some sand under our feet. In comes Lucerne with its outdoor bars. From breezy lounges to cozy gardens, they are located in some of the city’s best spots.
Think toasting with a summer cocktail, soaking in some beach feelings, and marveling at Lake Lucerne with the mountains beyond… Here’s an overview of this summer’s outdoor bars in Lucerne, and a snapshot of Sommerbar Buvette:
3. Go off the beaten track in Lucerne
City trips are only half as fun without experiencing a place’s culture firsthand. Lucerne is naturally rich in culture given its long history. This makes it ideal for some unforgettable summer moments that you will still relish once fall arrives.
The hidden corners, lively alleys, and historic buildings of Lucerne form the perfect setting for a refreshing city tour. Whether you take a guided city tour or a themed tour, it is the best way to go off the beaten track in Lucerne.
4. Embark on a discovery tour of the Lake Lucerne Region
The city of Lucerne is the perfect starting point for a discovery tour in the heart of Switzerland. And what better way to discover something new than with a friend or partner!
Currently, there is an attractive “2-for-1” Tell Pass promotion. This all-inclusive pass covers free travel by train, bus, boat - as well as on numerous mountain railroads throughout Central Switzerland!
With all those options at your fingertips, the most difficult decision will be where to go on your discovery tour... How about riding the world's steepest cogwheel railroad to the top of Mount Pilatus?
5. Treat yourself to retail therapy in the old town
Whatever activity you end up doing in Lucerne, you will need the perfect outfit for it. Start your shopping spree in the old town of Lucerne. Then, head to the Bruch and Hirschmatt-Neumatt neighborhoods for some of today’s hottest fashion. Here is a peek at Atelier Treger in Bruch:
And here’s an insider tip to help boost your shopping spree: if you stay overnight at a Lucerne hotel, you will receive a starting credit of 50 francs! This Lucerne “CityCard” credit counts towards your shopping tour, so what are you waiting for?
6. “I scream for ice cream!”
Gelato is the one indulgence you truly deserve on a hot summer day in Lucerne. It’s a good thing that there are several ice cream parlors throughout the city. The artisanal gelaterias make it a point to process local dairy into heavenly ice cream. To expand your flavor profile, seek out Gelateria dell'Alpi (black sesame) or Kalte Lust, a pop-up in front of the KKL Congress Center (sour cherry/chocolate).
Other ice-cream vendors in Lucerne, such as Bachmann’s Gelateria am Quai, offer homemade classics and exotics such as tiramisu.
7. Navigate Lake Lucerne on a steam paddler (or on a yacht)
The alpine setting of Lake Lucerne makes it truly unique in this world. There are few other lakes that can claim an equally stunning mountainscape wherever you look. Lake Lucerne offers many different boat trips, ranging from scheduled lines to shuttle boats, and from historic steam paddlers to culinary cruises and pedalo boats.
Keep in mind the many options at your fingertips, all of which are included in the Tell Pass: you could embark on the majestic Great Lake Cruise. Alternatively, how about a Wine & Dine Cruise on a summer night? Or a classy ride on the Saphir yacht with its convertible roof-top?
8. Select an experience with a small footprint
Lucerne is surrounded by beautiful nature that is worth protecting for generations to come. On their website, Lucerne Tourism lists more than 100 sustainable experiences to pick from. For your inspiration, here are some of these grand ideas with a small footprint:
- Reach the Bürgenstock cliff path by boat and funicular
- Learn about the alpine flora along the Klewenalp flower trail
- Surprise the kids with a ride to Engelberg on the themed Globi Express train
- Visit the urban organic farm Kulturhof Hinter Musegg with its restaurant and educational trail
- Try llama trekking in Giswil - a fun experience for all ages!
(This post is sponsored by Lucerne Tourism.)