Luxembourg will be taking part in World Heritage Day for the first time this Sunday.
Since 2005, the German Commission for UNESCO has been organising World Heritage Day, with Switzerland, Spain and the Netherlands also have taken up this initiative at the national level. Since 2015, African countries have celebrated African World Heritage Day each year.
This year, the celebration of the 25th anniversary of the inclusion of "Luxembourg, old quarters and fortifications" in the UNESCO World Heritage List has prompted the Luxembourg Commission for Cooperation with UNESCO and the Ministry of Culture to launch the World Heritage Day in the Grand Duchy, as well. The Luxembourg Commission for Cooperation with UNESCO has thus drawn up a programme of events and visits for Sunday 7 June 2020, all the while taking into account the health measures put in place to combat COVID-19.
The film Luxembourg#yourworldheritage, produced for the Luxembourg Commission for cooperation with UNESCO and available on YouTube and www.unesco.lu, will inspire beautiful discoveries during the day. The three UNESCO routes through the "Luxembourg, old quarters and fortifications" area (available on the smartphone app izi.travel), can be explored individually with an audio guide, even whilst in partial confinement. Accompanied by explanatory texts (in English, French, German, Luxembourgish and Dutch) and illustrated by images and sound, these routes can be easily downloaded to one's smartphone.
- UNESCO Promenade: a 2.5 km discovery walk will take you to the most beautiful sites in the old town;
- UNESCO Bike Tour: this tour for cycle tourists can be completed using a private bicycle or a bicycle rented at one of the Vel'Oh! Stations. Across 9.5 km, the route leads through the Pétrusse valley, Grund, Clausen, Pfaffenthal and the parks of the upper town;
- UNESCO-Visit for All (Unesco-Visite pour tous): this 1.9 km route is specifically dedicated to visitors with prams and people with physical disabilities or visual impairments. The same route can also be followed in plain language.
The izi.travel application can be downloaded from the App Store and Google Play.
Visitors can also view the work "The present order is the disorder of the future" by Ian Hamilton, installed at the Dräi Eechelen park and labelled "25 years Lëtzebuerg World Heritage".
In addition, the Lëtzebuerg City Museum has just reopened, offering the public an opportunity to visit the UNESCO Visitor Centre which is accessible to all and will be open on Sunday from 10:00 to 18:00.
The public may also consult the catalogue of 365 digitised old postcards on https://worldheritage.lu/. This presents some of the most beautiful views of "Luxembourg, old quarters and fortifications" and the project has also been labelled "25 years Lëtzebuerg World Heritage".
Similarly, "The Family of Man" exhibition designed by Edward Steichen was listed in 2003 by UNESCO in the “Memory of the World” heritage list. The collection brings together 503 photos from 273 photographers from 68 different countries. It can be visited at the Château de Clervaux from 12:00 to 18:00. On World Heritage Day, entry will be free.
For its part, the dancing procession of Echternach was listed in 2010 by UNESCO on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. The Visitor Centre on the dancing procession is installed in one of the covered courtyards of the basilica. It is accessible to everyone. Visitors will discover large paintings, images and historical texts. The history of the dancing procession is animated by the projection of films, historical maps which explain the origins and the evolution of this traditional event. The centre will be open on Sunday from 09:00 to 19:00.
Meanwhile, in the courtyard of the old abbey is the abbey museum, whose collections are accessible to all. The museum is dedicated to the history of the former abbey scriptorium, who produced manuscripts which are among the most exceptional to have been written in the Middle Ages. Opening hours: 10:00 to 12:00 and 14:00 to 17:00.
The website www.iki.lu presents the inventory of Luxembourg's intangible cultural heritage. The public can discover images, films, texts and soundtracks which recall the past of the dancing procession.
The public is also invited to take part on the Instagram contest #luxembourgyourworldheritage until 31 July 2020. Participants can upload their best memories of excursions on Luxembourg's UNESCO sites. The three most beautiful images will each be awarded with the book by photographer Christof Weber, "Discover Luxembourg". Three additional laureates will be awarded cultural prizes.