Liechtenstein. Have you heard the name of this country? We faintly remembered hearing this country’s name but never knew much more about it. When we went to Switzerland, we decided to take a day trip to Liechtenstein from Zurich, because why not?
Liechtenstein is officially the 6th smallest country in the world & 4th smallest country in Europe. It is also the 2nd least visited country in Europe. These 2 pieces of trivia were enough to ignite our interest in visiting Liechtenstein.
How to reach Liechtenstein from Zurich?
Train & Bus: From Zurich Hauptbahnhof, take a train to Sargans. Sargans is a Swiss town located on the Switzerland – Liechtenstein border. It takes 55 minutes to reach Sargans from Zurich & if you have the Swiss Travel Pass, the journey is free of cost.
There are many buses outside Sargans train station. Take the LIEMobil bus No. 11 (Green bus) towards Vaduz, the capital of Liechtenstein. It will take about 30 minutes & the journey is very scenic. The one-way ticket costs EUR 4.
Car or Taxi: The distance between Zurich & Vaduz is about 110 km. The one-way journey takes about 1 hour 15 minutes. Roads are amazing & if you can, you should rent a car in Switzerland & drive to Liechtenstein.
What to do in Liechtenstein?
1. Hike To Vaduz Castle
Vaduz Castle is the official residence of the royal family of Liechtenstein. They still live here, hence it is not possible to see the castle from the inside. However, this should not disappoint you because the hike to Vaduz Castle from the center is rewarding.
Vaduz Castle in Liechtenstein is definitely one of the most visited attractions in the country & the castle, at least from the outside, looks grand for sure. The hike is not an easy one for beginners so if you’re not up for it, please take the bus.
2. Take In The Panorama View
Between Vaduz city center & Vaduz Castle, there are many points which offer spectacular views of the capital. This quaint city & snowclad mountains is mesmerizing. What is more fascinating? In a few pictures, you might just capture the residence of the majority population of Liechtenstein.
There are many hiking trails around Vaduz. You can get more information on the trails from the tourist information office located in the center.
3. Get Your Passport Stamped
Liechtenstein is a sovereign country but it might not be possible to get their visa stamp on your passport directly. You can head to their tourist information center in Vaduz & get an official stamp of entry for only CHF 3! This souvenir stamp is something that you must take on your passport during your visit to the country.
We also got a similar stamp in San Marino!
4. Explore The Center of Vaduz
Like every other European city, Vaduz has also got a city center. The center of Vaduz is not so big. All the important buildings are located in 1 line. In half an hour, you can literally see every building from the outside. It is possible to see some tourists & street performers roaming around in this area because well, this is where most of the action in Liechtenstein is.
You will also find most of the good cafes & restaurants in the center.
5. St. Florin Cathedral
This pretty cathedral is also located in the center of Vaduz. We went there at a time when there was literally nobody inside the church. The peace & tranquility in the church was unmatched. There are few other cathedrals in Vaduz but St. Florin Cathedral is the best one.
6. Alte Rheinbrücke
Alte Rheinbrücke is the bridge between 2 countries. This is another unique thing that you will not get to do anywhere else in the world. On this old wooden bridge, you can keep 1 foot in Liechtenstein & another foot in Switzerland!
As you can see in the picture, there are boards as well. You can also take a bicycle or a horse on this bridge. Cycling around this area is quite amazing as the landscapes are extremely beautiful.
7. Gutenberg Castle
Gutenberg Castle is located about 12 km away from Vaduz. You can see this on your way to Vaduz or while returning from there to Sargans. We reached a little late & the castle was shut. However, we could see some part of it. The view of Balzers (the town) from the castle is spectacular.
Apart from Vaduz Castle, Gutenberg Castle is the only castle in Liechtenstein that is still preserved. From what we’ve read on Liechtenstein Tourism’s website, the castle is famous for it’s chapel & rose garden.
Few Things To Keep In Mind
- Liechtenstein is an expensive country, more expensive than Switzerland. So if you are on a budget, make sure you are carrying some food with you because the restaurants in Vaduz will make you feel full with their prices. Subway offers the cheapest food in Vaduz with sandwiches starting from CHF 5.5
- There are not many things to do in this tiny country if you plan on staying here for 2-3 days. For a day trip, there are many things to do. The tourism board of Liechtenstein is actively working towards bringing more & more activities for tourists.
- Check the opening & closing hours of important attractions, especially the ones far from Vaduz. We couldn’t see Gutenberg Castle from the inside because we reached a little late.
- If you are coming by public transport, please take a picture of the bus timetable because in the evening, the services are very few & it might be a problem to reach Sargans train station from Vaduz.
Where to stay?
There are few hotels & other alternate accommodations are available in Vaduz. However, if you are planning a day trip from Switzerland, you can stay in Zurich or Luzern. There are many more options available to choose from.
Watch our complete day trip to Liechtenstein here:
Photos: Awara Diaries