Liechtenstein - need to know
Aer Lingus (0818 365 000; aerlingus.com) flies from Dublin to Zurich from €98 return. Liechtenstein has no rail network, but a return ticket from Zurich to the border town of Buchs, a good entry point, costs €50. The trip takes about an hour. Within the principality itself public transport is excellent.
The Sonnenhof Hotel (0042 3239 0202; sonnenhof.li) on the hills of Vaduz offers luxurious accommodation and Michelin-Star dining from €85pps.
For a great-value Alpine experience stay in a cosy chalet-cum-dairy such as Berggasthaus Sücka from €25pps (0042 3263 2579 suecka.li), where they produce their own cheese.
Liechtenstein also has its own youth hostel, with dorm beds from €20 (0042 3232 5022; jugendherberge.ch/ schaan). For more details see tourismus.li.
FIVE GREAT THINGS TO DO
- Have a royal rendezvous. On Liechtenstein's national day, August 15, the Prince and Princess personally open the castle grounds for one day and throw a party for all members of the public, with free food, drinks and a fireworks ceremony. They even throw in a bus ride home for everybody.
- Follow Liechtenstein's intriguing history at the National Museum, and fine art at the Kunstmuseum. Maths buffs may wish to check out the Calculator Museum. For €16 you can invest in an Adventure Pass, which will grant you two days' access to the country's '25 highlights', as well as free public transport and chairlifts up the mountains.
- Sample the local vintage at Hofkellerei Liechtenstein, Prince Hans-Adam's personal wine cellar, which is open free to the public. After taking the wine trail along the splendid vineyards, you have the chance to sample the wines from his royal estates in both Vaduz and Wilfersdorf, Austria. Tastings are also free.
- Take to the slopes of Malbun. Situated in a valley of medium gradient, its 18 slopes a real favourite for beginner and intermediate skiers. As a result, it's considered largely inexpensive compared to Swiss resorts. A one-day skiing course by schneesportschule.li will cost adults €62.
- Hike along the well-marked routes that extend from the Rhine in the lowlands to the snowy climbs of the Oberland region.