65 Luxembourg

PopulationMetro: 1,185,200
Tucked among cliffs and rivers, with a moneyed, international citizenry, this may be Europe’s best-kept secret.

Storybook-inspired, petit Luxembourg (the country) and Luxembourg City (the capital) might well be tiny by the standards of bigger neighbors Belgium, France and Germany, but the major city punches far above its weight in global curiosity, as its #14 Google Search ranking would indicate.

What are people looking for? Luxembourg is renowned for its efficient bank sector. It’s also Secretariat of the European Parliament, and headquarters of the European Court of Justice. The capital of the only Grand Duchy in the world—you might run into the Duke in your wandering—also ranks #8 in the world for foreign-born residents. More than 170 nationalities call it home, making Luxembourg a true economic, social and cultural melting pot, which only seems fitting, given the destruction it endured during WWII.

CITY PERFORMACE
Place
Place 28
Product
Product 11
Programming
Programming 1
People
People 75
Prosperity
Prosperity 55
Promotion
Promotion 7

It’s also, according to fawning European travel media, one of the continent’s best-kept secrets—a UNESCO Heritage Site that’s never overrun by visitors, so you’ll be living like a local everywhere.

In a city founded in 963, built on cliffs and sliced through with river gorges, there are incredible views, including from the terrace of the city’s museum, the Musée d’Histoire de la Ville de Luxembourg.

If you crave a bit more adventure, walk the battlements of one of Europe’s most fortified cities or dive underground to explore miles of tunnels. Emerge into the future at the contemporary Museum of Modern Art Grand-Duc Jean (MUDAM for short.) Gracefully futuristic and spectacularly juxtaposed against ancient battlements, it’s the final chapter of IM Pei’s European Trilogy after the Louvre pyramid in Paris and the German Historical Museum in Berlin.