Liechtenstein is the sixth smallest country in the world, with a total area of 62 square miles and a population of 38,000. It’s Europe’s fourth smallest country and the second least-visited country in the continent. Just 80,000 tourists make the trip each year.
Liechtenstein has a mix of visitors. Most come for skiing, the country has a great resort in Malbun, with ideal slopes for all skiers. If you are not coming for skiing, many day-trippers from Switzerland come to spend the day mostly in Vaduz (and for the Liechtenstein passport stamp). The area is also known for its stunning hiking trails in the summer months.
Despite its small size, this micro state ranks in the top positions of many international rankings. Economically, Liechtenstein is the world’s richest country per capita, with one of the highest standards of living. It has the lowest corporation tax rates in Europe and crime is close to non-existent, too.
But Liechtenstein is not only strong in numbers but also an attractive travel destination. Its amazing mountainous landscape has made the country a perfect place where visitors can enjoy various winter sports. It is also known for its friendly locals, fabulous cuisine, mesmerizing Alpine views, and charming villages.
Visitors will be surprised and delighted by how much this tiny country has to offer. Here’s our guide to some of the most beautiful places to visit in Liechtenstein. Given the country's gorgeous Alpine location, nature and sports are the highlights of any visit: superb skiing, hiking and beautiful walks abound.
Schaan is the largest and the northernmost municipality in Liechtenstein. It’s a charming little town where visitors enjoy strolling the streets and taking in the local atmosphere. One of the main attractions of the town is the beautiful church located in the center of town.
Vaduz is located just 5-10 minutes drive from Schaan. As you approach the capital town, you can see the famous Vaduz Castle perched on a hilltop. Enjoy walking the beautiful pedestrian street in Städtle. This street is lined with beautiful shops, excellent restaurants and quaint cafes. Städtle also houses the Liechtenstein National Museum,p which will take you through the history of Liechtenstein. On the south end of the street is the Peter-Kaiser-Platz, the square which houses Liechtenstein’s government. Right next door is the St. Florin Cathedral, a beautiful church built in the 19th century.
The Vaduz Castle is a 20 min uphill walk from Städtle or a 5-minute drive. The views from the top of the hill are beautiful. You can see the whole valley with the Rhine flowing through. Do note that the castle is not open to visitors since the royal family resides there. So if you do take the hike up here it has to be for the views.
Triesenberg is a beautiful small mountain town. The views from the edge of the town down into the valley are breathtaking. Another town, Balzers, is where you’ll find the Gutenberg Castle situated high on a hill. This castle is open to the public as a museum and has been inhabited since the Neolithic period. The castle itself was built in the late Middle Ages.
Many visitors enjoy the amazing hiking routes which include: The Liechtenstein Trail, a route which connects all the municipalities; Princes’ Way Hike, a high altitude walking adventure; Princess Trail, a round trip hike along a flower-filled mountain ridge; and Alpaca and Lama Trekking, for some, this is the primary reason to visit Liechtenstein, the hiking trail is amazing for trekking. Mountain Biking and Cycling are also popular activities in the warmer months.
In the winter months, many visitors come to the small town of Malbun, a draw for all winter sports enthusiasts. Perched on an Alpine ridge near the Saminatal Valley, Malbun offers perfect snow conditions that lead to the first ski lifts and slopes in the 1960’s. Today, over 14 miles of trails are maintained and suitable for skiers of all abilities. The resort is also popular in the spring and summer months, too, when the slopes become a magnet for hikers, climbers, and mountain bikers.
Low-Season (April-May and September-October) - During this time, the weather remains cold and wet. This is considered off-season.
Mid-Season (June to August) - During this period, the country experiences good weather. Although the temperature can get hot, it is often interrupted by rain showers or thunderstorms. Some of the biggest festivals are observed during this time.
High-Season (End of November to March) - This is the time when people prefer to visit Liechtenstein. You can expect frequent snowfalls. So, if you love skiing, this is the time to go. The winter temperatures can go down to 30°F.
However, the visit time to the country can vary based on your preference. If you are not a snow lover, then you may prefer to visit during the end of autumn/fall or end of the springs.
Liechtenstein has a reputation for being a destination for day trips, to maybe spend a night, but not much more. However, if you want to really delve into this country, hike the mountain trails and discover the incredible walks, we recommend giving it at least a week.
There’s just one major road in Liechtenstein, so in an effort to reduce traffic, use of public transport is encouraged, and made inexpensive and efficient. No matter where you want to go in the country, there’ll be a Liemobil (https://www.liemobil.li/) bus to take you there. Bus tickets start from 2 CHF for a short single ride to 15 CHF for unlimited rides for a full day.
Another option is to grab one of the free rental bikes that are located across the country. There are 62 miles of cycle paths in Liechtenstein to explore.
Swiss franc – CHF (but € are widely accepted as well)
The official language of Liechtenstein is German, but there are around a dozen dialects spoken across the country. English is not common, but many of the tourist destinations know can speak enough to get by. We suggest you get a good English-German guidebook or app on your phone and familiarize yourself with common phrases such as hello, goodbye, excuse me and numbers 1-10.