The first destination this morning was Luzern’s Jesuit Church. The Rococo interior is bright and airy, with clear glass windows, white walls, and pink stucco marble. It stands in contrast to churches of darker interiors with stained glass.
Since their hostel does not provide breakfast, Raul and Lauren headed to Bäckerei Hug to “recharge,” as Lauren would say. They had rösti and raclette. With bellies full, Lauren navigated the bus system, and they arrived at the famous Lion Monument of Luzern. Despite their guidebook’s description of the monument being huge, Lauren was still astounded by its immensity. The sculpture of the wounded lion commemorates the Swiss guards who died defending the French king during the Revolution. Surprisingly, Lauren did not cry at the sight of the tears and pain evident on the noble beast’s muzzle. It is difficult for her to be so moved when there are hordes of tourists about.
With their emotional needs fulfilled, Raul and Lauren proceeded to satiate their intellectual thirst over the next several hours with a visit to the Swiss Transport Museum. They explored all modes of transport in Switzerland, including trains, trams, automobiles, bicycles, sailing vessels, aircraft, and high mountain lifts. One of the features that sets this museum apart from its drier counterparts is the multitude of interactive exhibits.
For example, in the building dedicated to automotive transport, there is a wall where dozens of vehicles from all eras are stacked on individual shelves. These are actual automobiles, not models, mind you. A robotic lifter is commanded by museum visitors to retrieve any one of the automobiles and bring it to the theater/viewing platform. A short presentation on the history of that particular model is then given. This was the highlight for Raul in terms of interactive exhibits. Other highlights include: a 1/20 scale model of a dual carriage alpine lift that can be operated on command, a full size replica of one of the earliest aircraft where one lies prone to fly it–complete with controls and flight simulator, nautical knot tying, vision tests, and countless others.
In the courtyard between the buildings, there was a test track where one could test drive a Chevy Volt, ride electric bicycles, or try out Segways. Lauren dislikes Segways, but she tried one anyway–she still dislikes them. Both had fun on electric bicycles. Raul gave the brakes a good test when he almost ran over some pedestrians.
It was a long day with much to see and do at the museum but well worth the time and entrance fee.
They finished the evening with a visit to Luzern’s public library and dinner at Restaurant Rathaus Bräuerei. Lauren ate Swiss macaroni and cheese while Raul had ravioli in tomato-butter sauce.
||Friday 25 May
||▲Lion Monument (Löwendenkmal), free
▲▲Swiss Transport Museum (Verkehrshaus), takes a half day, S₣15, 10:00-18:00, walk or take a boat from train station
▲▲Rosengart Collection (Sammlung Rosengart Luzern), free, 10:00-18:00
||Bicycle ride along lakeside paths