Monday, October 8, 2012

Malbun & Vaduz, Liechtenstein

Since I had been to Munich before and Jon had been there twice, our plan for Oktoberfest was to spend Thursday and Friday on the grounds, then rent a car for Saturday and Sunday and check out surrounding cities that we haven't been to yet. First up, Liechtenstein.  Many people asked, "Why are you going to Liechtenstein?" Our honest answer? Because it's there, so why not? We didn't see there being another time where we'd visit the fourth smallest country in Europe, and with it only being a 2.5 hour drive away we had to check it out.

Liechtenstein's claim to fame is that it's the world's largest producer of postage stamps and dentures. Though small, people come to visit this country for the amazing scenery of the Alps, its 250 miles of hiking trails, and it's one small skiing resort. After researching what we wanted to do here we picked out a hike in Malbun called Sassweg, which is supposed to have beautiful views of the alps and pass charming structures such as The Chapel of Peace. Unfortunately, mother nature had different plans for us as it was so foggy we couldn't see 10 feet in front of us. The main appeal of this hike is the views! We went back and forth deciding what to do, but the woman at the tourist office highly suggested against it. So we had to nix that idea and use our time in other ways.

When we first got there it wasn't too bad...

Where we were supposed to start our hike: Chapel of Peace

Different hikes

Probably a good idea that we didn't go down that path

Grumbling stomachs led us to a wonderful restaurant where we had a soothing and delicious meal.

Mmm, cheese...

Onion Soup

The best tomato soup ever!

After lunch we drove down out of the mountains and headed towards the capital of Vaduz. Vaduz is more like a village than a capital city, and seems to cater a lot to tourists since this is typically the only city in Liechtenstein people see. There's not too much to do in this city (which is why we had planned a hike in Malbun) but before the rain came we were able to walk up the steep hills to Vaduz Castle where the present day prince lives, although we weren't allowed to go into the castle for that reason.

Vaduz Castle

The rain really started to come down after this so we ducked into the postage stamp museum, which showcases all of the national stamps produced since 1912. Fortunately, admission is free. And luckily there was an exhibition upstairs of a photographer who had amazing water pictures, which made the visit to the museum a little more interesting.

Cool! Stamps!

We walked around the small city in the rain, looking at the main city square with the art museum and cathedral, but after a while we decided to call it quits.

Cool statue

Government building on left with the Cathedral of St. Florin in the background.

National Museum

New Parliament Building

More of the National Museum

We enjoyed our trip to Liechtenstein, but we wish the weather had been better so we could have seen the amazing views we had read about and seen in pictures. Nevertheless, this small country is not to be missed!


  1. Very interesting little country! Too bad that you and Jon couldn't go hiking to see the beautiful views of the alps. But after seeing the pics of the fog and rain, I think you made the right decision not to go! There is one pic in particular that I'm curious about. There is a pic of the beautiful Vaduz Castle in the distance, and then in the same pic there is a building which is much closer. I was actually surprised to see this type of a building because it didn't fit in at all with the architecture of the castle. It looked like a very modern building compared to the other buildings and structures in the area and it just looked like it didn't belong there. But I think the most fascinating thing I learned about this country was that they are the largest producers of postage stamps and dentures! I didn't find the postage stamps as strange as the dentures! And I have to ask, "Why dentures"?!! The food looked so yummy! My mouth was watering when I was looking at the pics of the food! And the statues are very interesting and quite different! I really enjoyed reading this blog about this tiny little country! Maybe one day, Dad and I will get to go there!

  2. That meal looks freaking fantastic. Can I trade you some sushi for some cheesy soup please?