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Hiking in 'Little Switzerland', the Mullerthal Trail

Spend all day, or just part of it, hiking the Mullerthal Trail — the so-called Little Switzerland of Luxembourg. This extensive network of hiking trails — 112 km (70 miles) in all — passes through deep-green forests, prehistoric rock formations and rushing rivers and streams. You can explore on your own, or have a private guide show you the highlights.

Along the trail, you can visit several small towns and villages with ruined castles adorning their hilltops. Stop to rest in a medieval town square, then head off into the canyons and caves, some of which are marked with the carvings of their ancient inhabitants.

The trail has been named one of Europe’s best for hiking, but is still relatively unknown compared to more popular nature walks. It means it’s a more peaceful destination in the warmer months of June through August. Choose your timing and desired challenge, and we can tailor your hike to your interests.

Luxembourg’s Mullerthal Trail, with its deep forests and craggy rock formations running with waterfalls and streams, is known as Little Switzerland for its abundant natural beauty. The trail runs for 112 km (70 miles) in three distinct trail loops, and has been called one of Europe’s most underrated hikes. Because it’s in off-radar Luxembourg, it’s also less crowded than many other hiking destinations, particularly in the warmer months.

You can tailor this hike to your desired level of effort and time spent, and you can see other sights along the way, depending on which path you pick. The trails themselves traverse deep forests, prehistoric caves, rock canyons and human-made features like steps and arched bridges that blend into the dappled landscape, bringing scenes from The Lord of the Rings to mind.

One trail starts in the town of Echternach, a pastel-painted town on the banks of the Sûre River, near the German border. The route passes through several other villages where you can stop and rest, before passing through the Sûre Valley, with its green-carpeted riverbanks sloping among the tree-dotted hillsides.

Several castles also emerge out of the green at various points on the Mullerthal, including the 11th-century ruin of Beaufort Castle, and the much more recently built Meysembourg Castle, an 1880 structure with sheer white walls topped by steep black spires. The romantic building stands on a bluff on a site that has had a castle on it since the 12th century.

Another 12th-century castle stands atop the nearby tiny town of Larochette, which boasts a medieval heart and only around 1,200 inhabitants. You can explore the castle’s ruin as a break from the more natural parts of the trail.

On the trail again, you’ll encounter several protected forests, including the Saueruecht, a nature reserve rich in strange rock formations, moss-covered trees and other hints that you’ve stepped into a fairy tale.

You can take a hike on your own or with a private guide, who can tell you more about the sites you visit and the details of the landscape. The trails are open most of the year, from March through November.

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