We were woken up early in our room at Hotel Catania at around 5am to the rustle of people setting up for the daily market. While the Hotel itself was decent enough, I wouldn’t recommend it to someone who plans on getting up late. The hotel is flanked by the market so if you’re near a window, you’re bound to hear the bustle of the market below. However, my wife and I are early risers – so it wasn’t a problem for us.
We packed the night before (something I highly recommend if you don’t want to feel rushed), so we just grabbed our bags and headed down for breakfast at the hotel. The breakfast was ok – standard fare, nutella, croissants, and cereals – a solid breakfast, but not nearly as good as what we’ve had on the trip so far.
After our quick eats, we walked across the street to the bus stop – there is a shuttle AMT bus (line 457) from Hotel Catania that costs 4 euros each (and runs every 20 minutes heading directly for the hotel) that makes the hotel a fine stop if you’re in town for a one day layover.
The longest part was yet to come though – two stops (with two hour layovers in between) – Catania to Geneva, Geneva to Zurich, and Zurich to Luxembourg. We came prepared though with power banks, music and books to make the time pass and to enjoy our day. The Swiss Air flights we took were good (We find it to be one of the best airlines in the world – fantastic complimentary snacks and Swiss chocolate!). Additionally, the day before, we bought some snacks for lunch (pizza, chips, etc.) so we could save some money at lunchtime at the Zurich airport. The best part of it was overlooking the Swiss Alps. That alone made the long haul worthwhile!
By the time we got to Luxembourg Airport in Ville de Luxembourg, we were already refreshed from resting the entire day (multiple flights can be relaxing if you plan ahead!). We got to the Hilton Doubletree Hotel, which was a bit away from Luxembourg City Center, but was a great accommodation nevertheless and included a FREE transfer to/from the airport.
We unpacked our bags and headed for the bus (the busses in Luxembourg run frequently, and 20 euros/person gets you a 48-hour Luxembourg city pass for unlimited bus and train rides within the country). This can be purchased in town or directly from the hotel lobby.
We took a walk around the pedestrian area, taking in the views of the shops, streets and spectacular areas of the city.
We decided to try our luck at a local restaurant called “Matelots“, a French restaurant where we had some pasta, fish and crepes. We then took another bus back to the hotel and rested for our next day – exploring la Ville de Luxembourg!
On a side note – the first thing we noticed about Luxembourg (A tri-lingual country: Luxembourgian, German, and French) is that everything was in French, including signs (which is good, because my wife speaks the language, and our pronunciation of German words is pretty poor!). While the accents were different than of the Swiss or French, it was easy for us to navigate the city and speak to all the locals fluently. Si vous parlez français – you’ll have no trouble in Luxembourg. Secondly, was the pricing – we were told that Luxembourg is a very expensive city, and we were expecting prices on par with Zurich and Geneva. I must say, while it’s certainly not a cheap city, it’s on par with North American large city pricing – being from Toronto, food and shopping was as expected back home. Very reasonable.
Hi, I’m Jason Wingate and I caught the travel bug a few years ago with my wife Sophia Bello. Together, we’ve been travelling the world and sharing our experiences here on our blog, hoping to inspire and help you on your own journey!