Swiss microcosm.

AuteurDe Faoite, Diarmuid
Fonction Humour

Lucerne is one of the many Swiss towns that people may grow up thinking of as French-speaking, until you actually go there and hear the locals hacking up fur balls as they talk to you in Swiss-German. Another popular misconception is the city's spelling--people fight over whether it's 'Lucerne' or 'Luzern" In true contrary Swiss fashion, it's neither. Welcome to Lozarn!

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Lucerne is most famous as a tourist destination: each year visitors, from around the world flock to this picturesque Swiss city, which features a historic central district, lake and lovely views of the mountains. (Yes, I know that you could find this in almost any Swiss town, but don't tell the tourists--it's all part of a secret traffic containment plan. Keeping them either in Lucerne or grouped around the Gotthard Tunnel flees up valuable space in the rest of the country.)

Summer in the city

Every spring/summer, the snow from the surrounding mountains melts and flows into the Vierwaldstattersee (which, besides its bizarre name, is oddly also populated by steamboats--without casinos). It is hard to know if the annual Blue Balls music festival takes its name from the lake's ice-cold water ...

Gigs are held at the KKL (short for Krazy Kultur Location). This magnificent lakeside construction is celebrated as a world-class classical music venue, hosting many of the concerts for the annual Lucerne Festival. If "popular" culture is more your thing, it has even been known to host concerts for the likes of Joe Cocker, Seal and Phil Collins--or any one of the many faded stars who develop a sudden interest in touring Switzerland about a decade after their last big hit.

In summer, Lucerne probably has the highest concentration of foreigners in Switzerland (and by foreign, I mean Japanese). If said tourists are not Japanese, then they are most likely Indian, visiting some of the many places made...

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