Nölliturm, Männliturm, Luegisland,Wachtturm, Zyturm, Schirmerturm, Pulverturm, Allenwindentrum, Dächliturm; every Luzerner can rattle off the names of the 9 towers that are part of Luzern’s scenery and also known as the Museggtürme. Back in the 15oos they were the very defined border to the town and ensured its safety against intruders.
On Saturday 13th, 8 of the 9 towers will be open to visitors (Luegisland is the only which will remain closed) from 10:00 to 17:00 for free.
Here is a very brief description of each one:
The Nölliturm, the one closest to the Reuss river was built in the early 1500 (new data reveals that it is later than originally thought) and has recently undergone restoration work. It now belongs to the Safran Guild and well worth a visit.
The Männliturm dates back to at least 1440. It was used for military purposes up until the second world war. Although its only partially restored, the 138 steps to the top are well worth climbing up for the amazing view!
Luegisland was built sometime around 1367, rising at 52,6 meters it is the highest tower of the 9, unfortunately you won’t be able to visit it as it is on private grounds.
The Wachtturm was called Heuturm (hay tower) until 1577. It was then used to store gun powder until it blew up in 1701 due to a bolt of lightning. The catastrophe cost 5 people their lives and the current tower was built shortly thereafter. Visitors will learn about the birds and bats who now live in the tower.
The Zytturm was built in 1403, it houses the oldest town clock, dating back to 1535. Here you will find a collection of clocks dating from the middle ages to the 20th century.
The Schirmerturm was built in 1420 and modified many times before achieving its current form in 1513. Here you will get a glimpse of the upcoming exhibition “Die Mauer – von Musegg bis Gaza” which begins on September 26th (more on that further down).
The Pulveturm was built in 1398/99, and was one of two towers used for gun powder storage, after the Wachtturm blew up it remained as the only place that stored gun powder. Nowadays it is the meeting place for the Weyzunft Guild.
Allenwinderturm built in 1540/41 it now houses the tambourine association and the mask makers association.
The Dächliturm received its distinctive pyramidal shaped roof in 1449. It is the meeting place for the Swiss Carpenter Masters, who will be glad to welcome you and show you their beautifully furnished meeting room.
There will be tours of the towers beginning at 9:00 and running every 20 minutes thereafter,
The Wässerturm will also be open for visitors.
You can find more information about the towers here.
The history museum is also launching an exhibition on September 26th based around the city wall and its towers, including a guided tour / play showing how the towers were used back in the middle ages.
So make sure you’re wearing comfortable shows, keep a firm grip on your kids and climb those stairs for some local history!