Ah, yes, what pretty pictures. But Lucerne was like a vain woman – shallow, boring, self-important, and expensive. And if you look again it’s not really that pretty. It gets worse when the lights go off – because (again to my analogy) nothing happens after dark. Then you realize you’ve spent all this time and money and basically got nothing. You got shafted. That’s how we felt about Lucerne.
Sure, there’s a few nice views of the famous wooden bridge and the lake. There’s mountains in the distance. But after that there’s not much. Buildings and architecture are boring. Churches are boring (we’ve seen some nice churches on this trip – Lucerne’s are plain in comparison). The fort walls are not worth the 15 minute walk because they are also boring. Boring, boring, boring.
But what really angers me about Lucerne is the way they so unashameably rip off the tourist. Again, just like some beat down skank trying to squeeze its last bucks out of your pocket because she knows that her looks are fading and you won’t be back again. The ‘tourist stretch’ is on the lake side next to the chapel bridge – the restaurants there all screw you with their prices. 35 Swiss Francs for a plate of pasta? Come on. The thing is that everything in the old city closes down in the evening, by 8 pm there was nothing open except for those lake side restaurants. Except McDonalds. I havn’t eaten McDonalds in 5 years but we did in Lucerne. Screwed up my stomach and I was stuck on the pottie the next morning squeezing out some golden nuggets – that basically sums up what I thought of Lucerne.
Then there was our hotel, Hotel des Alpes. Mini bar: 4.20 SF for a small bottle of Sprite, 5.70 SF for a small bottle of Heineken. Everyone knows they’re going to pay more from a hotel mini bar, but 3 times the price? (we went to the market at the train station and picked up a Sprite for 1.30 SF). They have no shame in shafting you. Then, on top of it all, our hotel was the unfriendliest of any hotel on our travels. They wouln’t even look up when we passed reception. A couple of old ladies at reception were so dour and mean-looking I was afraid to walk by without a cross in my hand and garlic around my kneck. Expensive and unfriendly – 2 out of 5.
Lonely Planet recommends Lucerne. Trip Advisor names it one of the 100 Best destinations in the world in 2008. I just don’t get it…
Next: Bacharach, Germany