Luzern has many places with a majestic view over (part of) the city. Of course, there is Pilatus, offering a view over large parts of central Switzerland from the top. But also within the city, venues such as Chateau Gütsch and several rooftop bar make for a splendid panorama. But did you know about the old city wall of Luzern, the Museggmauer already? During the spring, summer and autumn, this old city wall and some of its watchtowers are accessible and offer magical views over Luzern, the lake, and Mount Pilatus. And the best thing of all? Entrance is completely free!
The Museggmauer is still almost 900 meters long making it the longest intact city wall in the whole of Switzerland. Part of the wall is accessible to the public to walk on during a part of the year. Originally, the Museggmauer city wall had 30 watchtowers to protect the city, of which nine still remain today. You can actually climb three of those towers during your walk on the Museggmauer!
Walk with a view
You can start your walk of the Museggmauer city walk on two sides; either at Nölliturm in the west (up the winding path to the Männliturm or in the east at the Schirmerturm. Personally, I think the Männliturm is the highlight of the trip, which is why I prefer to save it for last and start my walks in the east.
The stairs to get on the city wall and inside the towers can be quite steep, so I do recommend proper footwear. For your own safety (and other visitors), do not climb the towers wearing slippers or heels!
The parts of the city wall that you can walk on are not very narrow, but the path can get crowded on busy days. Just take your time and give others space to enjoy the experience!
Ding dong does the clock(tower)
One of the towers that can be visited is the Zytturm, the old clock tower. As the clock on the old Zytturm is still in operation, it is truly fascinating to see the mechanics up close. It is quite a climb to the top of the tower, but really cool to see the pendulum swing as time passes. The Zytturm has small windows overlooking the lake and the city of Luzern. The stairs (or should I stay ladders?) in this tower are exposed at some parts, making this not a great climb for those afraid of heights.
Männliturm – the cherry on the pie
On the western end of the Museggmauer (just before the much less tall Nölliturm), you find the Männliturm. It thanks its name to the big statue of a harnessed figure on the top of the tower. The reason I recommend to start the Museggmauer walk from the east, is because I think the Männliturm offers the best viewpoint of the entire experience. As the Männliturm is located quite close to the Reuss river, the top of the tower offers breathtaking views of the inner city and the Spreuerbrücke. Many famous Luzern pictures of the crystal blue water in the Reuss are taken from the top of this tower.
Open for visits during the warmer months of the year
The Museggmauer city wall is open to the public from the 1st of April until the 1st of November. If does close in case of snow during these months.
The Museggmauer can be climbed daily from 08.00 in the morning until 19.00 in the evening. As mentioned, visiting the Museggmauer is completely free of charge and a must-do when visiting Luzern. Bring your good shoes!
For even more information about the Museggmauer, be sure to visit the official website.