A Quiet Day in Echternach, Luxembourg

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Luxembourg is culturally Dutch and French and people here speak these languages as well as Luxembourgish. Some signs are in English, but most are not. When the receptionist greeted me at the hotel, she asked “French or Dutch?” I could tell she was not interested in even trying to deal with me when I told her that I speak English. However, when I mentioned that I could also speak Portuguese, her face lit up and she has been sweet to me ever since. She does not speak Portuguese, but I had heard that there was a large Italian and Portuguese immigration influence here, so maybe that put me in her cultural good graces.

Breakfast at my little French Hotel was included and it was so good. Bread rolls, cheese and meats accompanied black current jam, orange juice and hot tea. I can’t wait to wake up again tomorrow 😉

The promise of good walking trails is what drew me to this sleepy little town an hour outside the main city center. After breakfast, I set off to find them. I just wandered until I found a sign for them. I picked Burgdorf as my “destination” or direction I would follow because it said it was about 5 km away. I figured that was doable. When I finally made it to the woods section of the trail, I looked down at the uneven cobble stone path and up the hill and thought, “I will try.” About 1/2 way up there was a bench to rest. I made the benches after every rise my goal. “If it was beautiful from the beginning, this wouldn’t be so hard.” I had to laugh at my thoughts…isn’t that just like life? You hope it turns out to be what was promised, but getting there can be daunting.

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My thoughts turned to awe as I turned one particular corner. I swear I stepped into a wooded garden. Trees forever tall, Boulders of rock emerged in a mighty sense, and dainty flowers grew wildly amid the foliage. This led into a cavern of boulders that you go down into and then climb up again on the other side. I was tired at the top, but my feet were light because it was so grand. Later on the trail there was a section that was labeled “The labyrinth” which was a perfect name for the trail that was just wide enough for one person to pass through at a time in a winding pattern through the rocks on either side. A movie should definitely be filmed here.

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The trail was suddenly closed so I had to find where it opened up again which was not an easy task. I found it again only to find that the section I was on was also closed. I really had no choice but to continue on because I had to get back somehow. The trail ended at a farm. I walked the road towards what I hoped was Burgdorf. When I arrived to the little neighborhood of houses, the town was called “Hamhoff.” Ummm…well…I walked around until I found a bus stop. It was time to go back to Echternauch and not on foot. My 5 km walk may have ended up being longer because a sign said that it would be 12 km from Hamhoff to Echternauch. I would love to know.

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Back in Echternauch, I looked at some of the shops. Most of them are geared for old ladies, so not the best shopping. However, there was a great little ice cream parlor that had an ice cream bar. They made ice cream creations that would make your jaw drop and your taste buds happy. Fruit flavored gelato ice cream with fruits cascading down the martini glass or coffee and chocolate ice cream covered in an espresso shot, whip cream and chocolate shavings. So many different choices…Yum!

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About the Author : Kylene Almeida

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