Old town of Lucerne, Switzerland
© Xantana/Getty Image
Where the glow of the holidays lingers
On the shores of Lake Lucerne you’ll find the medieval Swiss city that shares the lake's name. Emerging from a Benedictine monastery founded here in 750, Lucerne is today the largest town in central Switzerland. The central of three ancient, covered wooden pedestrian bridges of Lucerne’s Old Town has a unique feature. The interior of the Kapellbrücke (Chapel Bridge) is painted with religious scenes and allegories to edify those walking across it to the St. Peter’s Chapel. Though we are between holidays, the German-speaking city is just getting started. After Christmas and New Year's Day, preparations begin for Fasnacht, the Swiss-German equivalent of Mardi Gras. Just like that carnival, the streets fill up with hundreds of fantastically masked and boisterous marchers, cutting loose before the fast of Lent.