This analysis of the wheelchair accessibility of Lucerne is from our trip in Summer 2022.
We chose Lucerne as a base of operations for exploring the Bernese Oberland and Zurich, as well as a destination in and of itself. Much of our time was just walking around Lucerne, exploring the riverfront, shops, and medieval history. It was a relaxing and peaceful way to round out our trip and to recover from our daytrips. All of these destinations in Lucerne were within a mile or two of our hotel.
Overview of Route (explored over a couple of days)
Most of the sidewalks and roads were smooth and flat on the southern bank (by the train station). The northern bank is the old historic town, and as such had more stretches of cobblestone and pavers. My scooter handled all of the bumpy stretches, but some required me to go at a slow speed to handle the bumpiness.
The 14th century bridge of Kapellbrücke (Chapel Bridge) is the centerpiece of the waterfront. It runs at an angle, and used to connect the town’s fortifications. There are also approximately a hundred paintings under the rafters, most of which date back to the 17th century. The bridge is accessible via a moving platform to traverse the stairs. There is a call button to ask for assistance, but we could not get it to work. This very well may have just been user error.
The bridge is gorgeous, even without going on it. It anchors the river and is a breathtaking glimpse into history.
We walked along the river from the train station, past Kapellbrücke, and then crossed the river at Reussbrücke. This bridge has stairs on the sides at the water, but there is a main road that goes across it without stairs–I had to go a block off the water to access that road, but it then was smooth scooting. This was a great way to cross the river, and it gave a great view of the Kapellbrücke.
On the other side of the river bank, we explored the historic district. There were cobblestone streets, historic buildings, quaint outdoor cafes, and even a few street entertainers playing alphorns. The sidewalks were bumpy, but doable at slow speeds. We also grabbed a glass of wine and then dinner at different restaurants on the riverbank overlooking the Kapellbrücke.
The Spreuerbrücke (Mill Bridge) is another medieval bridge that is wheelchair accessible from the north side of the bank — there are stairs on the south side. There are gorgeous 17th century paintings throughout this bridge as well. I felt this compensated nicely for not being able to cross the Kapellbrücke.
From the Spreuerbrücke, we walked along the river to the Nölliturm, which is a remnant of the town’s fortified wall. Along the way is the dam/spillway that is used to control the river level.
We also spent time just walking along the lakeside. The swans and ferries made picturesque focal features against the stunning backdrop of the lake and mountains. Talk about peaceful. And the wheelchair accessibility in Lucerne was just as relaxing.